Mango Shrikhand tarts are not new on this blog…in fact this little dessert was one of the first things I wrote about when we started the blog!
When I was young, my grandmother would make shrikhand at home, as back then it wasn’t available in stores as it is now. She usually made the basic version which was hung yoghurt, flavoured with sugar, cardamom, nutmeg a little saffron and pistachios. And she had a giant steel dabba (box) in which she would keep the shrikhand inside the fridge from where we would help ourselves to it when we wanted. I always enjoyed having it, especially with chapatis as a child, but never treated it as something special. It was always there!
When we started thinking about dishes for BHDC, we realised that yoghurt based desserts were quite unique to Indian cuisines and so started experimenting with new ways to bring them onto our menu.
Shrikhand appeared on our menu as a Shrikhand tart, flavoured with Alphonso mango and is a seasonal dessert for the summers when Alphonso mangoes are available. We don’t serve it during the rest of the year. Originally I used my regular fluted tart moulds to make the pastry into which I then filled the shrikhand.
But on one of our trips back to Mumbai, I chanced upon a little hole in the wall bakery shop at Santacruz market, where a couple of guys were sitting and moulding aluminium sheets and strips into cake and tart rings of all shapes and sizes. Intrigued, I started looking around at the different moulds on display and asked if they had any baking tins shaped like a mango. I had been on the lookout for a mango or paisley shaped tin for a while and where better to look for one than in Mumbai! One of the guys rummaged in a drawer and held up a tiny cookie cutter in a mango shape!! Delighted I asked if they would be able to create a larger size for me and after some drawings to finalise the size and much haggling over the price, I managed to acquire these beautiful mango-shaped tart moulds 🙂
I knew it would be tricky to fold the pastry into this shape, but after a couple of attempts I managed to successfully produce the tarts. For the filling, the base of the tart has white chocolate ganache flavoured lightly with saffron, cardamom and a pinch of sea salt (yes, you read that right….helps balance the sweetness!). I used to earlier put dark chocolate ganache at the bottom but felt it competed too much with the yoghurt, so replaced it with white chocolate ganache. The shrikhand is made with hung yoghurt mixed with Alphonso mango pulp and flavoured with saffron, cardamom, a pinch of nutmeg and some sugar.
The Marathi and Bengali yoghurt-based desserts, like shrikhand and bhapa doi have consistently down well with our guests, especially our non-Indian guests, because no one expects yoghurt-based desserts to taste so good and they’re much lighter to eat as compared to many other Indian desserts!
So here is the recipe. I’ve tried to be precise with my measurements, but invariably I do play around with the flavours when cooking. Feel free to adapt the sweetness or amount of mango or spices depending on your personal taste. Hope you have fun making these! 🙂
MANGO SHRIKHAND TARTS
- Mango Shrikhand
- 250ml greek yoghurt, chilled
- 3 Alphonso mangoes, cut and pureed
- 1 ½ tsp nutmeg powder
- 1 ½ tsp cardamom powder
- 8-10 strands of saffron
- 2 tbsp milk (to soak saffron)
- 1/3rd cup chopped pistachios (for garnish)
- 100g plain flour
- 60g butter
- 20g icing sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- Pinch salt
- 2 tsp cold water
- ½ tsp cardamom powder
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- White chocolate ganache (optional)
- 50 g white chocolate
- 25g cream
- pinch of salt, pinch of nutmeg/mace, pinch of cardamom
For the shrikhand:
Place the yoghurt in a muslin cloth. Tie the cloth to create a knot over the yoghurt and place in a colander over a bowl to allow the whey to strain. Warm the milk and put the saffron strands into it to release the colour and flavour. Peel the mangoes. Cut the flesh in large chunks and put it in a blender to make a smooth puree. Untie the muslin and scrape the yoghurt cream into a bowl. Gradually add the mango puree into the yoghurt. Add the cardamom powder, nutmeg powder and milk with saffron. Whisk the mixture till creamy. Adjust mango and spices for taste & add a little sugar if needed. Pour the shrikhand into a piping bag and keep in the fridge (or freezer to chill faster)
For the pastry:
In a bowl, add the flour. Make a well and add the butter, icing sugar, salt and spices. Mix to incorporate the butter till the mixture becomes crumbly. Add the egg and water to form a dough. Turn the dough onto the counter and using a little extra flour, knead 3-4 times to bring the pastry dough together. Place the dough in cling wrap, flatten it and chill it for an hour. After it has chilled, take the dough out and let it stand for 5 mins. Depending on the tart tins you are using, divide the dough into appropriately sized balls and roll out the pasty to a size larger than the pastry tin. Place the pastry into the tin and using your fingers press it gently into the tin all around and on the base. Using the rolling pin, roll over the top of the tin to cut out the extra pastry. Once done, press the pastry on the sides to raise the dough slightly over the surface. This is to account for some shrinkage as the pastry cooks. Prick the base of the pastry with a fork and place the lined pastry tins back in the fridge for 20 -30 mins. Pre-heat the oven at 180°C (Gas 3). Remove the pastry tins from the fridge, line them with baking paper/aluminium foil and place baking beans/rice/beans. Blind bake for 10 mins. Then remove the baking paper/foil and bake them for 5 minutes to let the pastry get some colour. Remove from the oven and let the pastry cool down. Once cool, remove it from the tin.
For the ganache
Chop the white chocolate into small pieces. Gently heat the cream in a pan. When it starts to simmer, remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Stir well to allow the chocolate to melt. Add salt and spices and mix. Once the chocolate is completely melted and the ganache is smooth, keep it aside to cool down.
Once the tarts have cooled down, pour a little ganache to line the base of the tart and keep it in the fridge for 30 mins to chill. Then remove and pipe the shrikhand into each pastry tart. Decorate the top with chopped pistachios.