Mango Shrikhand Tarts

IMG_5336Mango 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! But what makes this post special is a little upgrade on the moulds that I used to make the tarts.

When we were in Mumbai earlier this year, I chanced upon a little hole in the wall bakery shop at Santacruz market, where a couple of guys were sitting and moulding aluminum 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 finalize the size and much haggling over the price, I managed to acquire these beautiful mango-shaped tart moulds 🙂

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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 this time I 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. And finally decorated with pistachio powder and some pomelo (inspired by the mango pomelo sago dessert from Hong Kong)

The Marathi and Bengali yoghurt-based desserts, like shrikhand and bhapa doi go 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! Especially after the full-on meal we serve 😉

At the request of a reader, I am adding the recipe to the post. I’ve tried to be precise with my measurements, but invariably I do play around with the flavours when cooking. So 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)
  • Pastry
    • 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
    • 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.

To serve

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.

Priya

 

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Dahi to Doi: a journey in yoghurt

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Although there is little in common between Marathi and Bengali food in terms of flavour, there are some ingredients that are commonly used. Yoghurt is one such ingredient, used in both savoury as well as sweet preparations. It is called dahi in Marathi and doi in Bengali.

As I started to think of what else I could do for a dessert option on our dining menu, the idea of playing around with all the versions of yoghurt started appealing to me. I have already spoken about shrikhand and sandesh (sandesh is technically made from curdled milk, but why let facts get in the way of a good story?) I decided to add another Bengali yoghurt dessert to my repertoire – Bhapa doi. Bhapa means steamed and doi is yoghurt, so this is a steamed yoghurt pudding.

IMG_3701You couldn’t find a simpler recipe to make – equal parts of yoghurt and condensed milk mixed together with a little vanilla essence for flavour. This is then steamed to allow the mixture to set and become like a pudding or cheescake.

And so with that I have a nice little trio of milk/yoghurt based desserts – Shrikhand tart with mango, Bhapa doi and sandesh! All light in taste and so different from typical Indian desserts! Only one more needs to be added to this….a shrikhand vadi. But that is going to take a little practice to get right 😉

Priya

Shrikhand continued…

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A new flavour for shrikhand – roasted figs, orange juice and pistachios. I used dried turkish figs and roasted them to get more flavour. I prepared the yoghurt as I normally do for shrikhand, using a cheese cloth to drain out the whey. And then I blended the yoghurt cream with the roasted figs and a little squeeze of orange juice, chilled it and served it topped with a slice of fresh orange, pistachios and walnut. The graininess of the figs provided a nice texture to the shrikhand and made for a very different and enjoyable taste.

Shrikhand

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Shrikhand is a quintessential Marathi dessert and I have fond memories of my grandmother making this at home. Shrikhand is made by hanging yoghurt or curds to strain out the whey. The remaining yoghurt cream is then mixed with some sugar, ground cardamom and nutmeg, saffron and charoli (lndian dry fruit) and chilled before being served.

There are many variations of shrikhand and my favourite is the one made with mangoes also known as Amrakhand. Since the mango of choice is the Alphonso or haphoos, this variation was always made during the summer months when the Alphonso was in season. Other variations are made with different fruits like oranges, figs and a combination of dry fruits like almonds, pistachios and raisins.

My grandmother and mother usually made shrikhand with yoghurt set at home. Home set yoghurt tends to be less tart than the ready made yoghurt and needs less sugar when making shrikhand. My variation on this traditional dessert is to serve chilled shrikhand in home made pastry shells and I prefer using greek yoghurt as it results in a much thicker yoghurt cream. I sometimes add a layer of dark chocolate ganache onto the base of the shell to create a flavour contrast with the yoghurt.

Priya

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