Mango Mania – A Twist of Taste
My friend, Dipta Maitra, drew my attention to this recipe made and posted by him at a food forum, at Facebook. He mentioned that he wasn't really sure whether he would consider this to be a salad or a dessert. When I finally re-created the recipe on my plate and had a bite of the mangoes and cashews, I decided l would definitely go with dessert. Please, don't take my word for it. Make it and decide for yourself, and when you do, please do let me know ;-) It is the season of delicious, luscious mangoes so be it a salad or a dessert, I'll take them any way I get them. Go ahead, give this recipe a try and enjoy the mango season while it lasts.
2 star anise
2 sticks cinnamon, each two inches long
4 heaped teaspoons powdered sugar
150 mils water
1 teaspoon white sesame seeds
1 teaspoon black sesame seeds
12 cashew nuts
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
1 fresh red chili, deseeded and cut very fine
2-3 leaves mint, finely chopped
- Toast the white and the black sesame seeds on a griddle/tava. Keep aside.
- Roast the cashews on a low flame without burning them. Keep aside.
- Mix the EVOO and the apple cider vinegar with the mint and red chilies. Keep aside.
- Add sugar, cinnamon and star anise to water and boil till the sugar attains a one string consistency. It will boil down to about 20 to 25 mils. (The consistency of the sugar syrup should be such that when you pour half a teaspoon of syrup on a plate it should not be runny.)
- When the sugar attains the desired consistency, retain the syrup and discard the cinnamon and the star anise.
- Cut a large thick slice from the large flat side of the mango, right through till your knife touches the seed. Repeat from the other side of the mango. Also, repeat the same for the second mango.
- Cut the large slices with crisscross cuts. Press the skin upwards to open up the cuts and voila! You have a decorative slice of mango in your hand. (to learn the mango cutting procedure, click on Basic Decorating Mango Cutting )
- Dip the cashews in the sugar syrup and remove. Ensure that they are not dripping with too much syrup.
- Place three cashews on each plate.
- Pour some sugar syrup reduction over the cashews and sprinkle some toasted black and white sesame seeds over it.
- Place the cut mango next to it and drizzle some EVOO-Apple Cider Vinegar mixture over it.
- Sprinkle it with a tiny pinch of sea salt.
- Pour a few drops of the sugar reduction here and there on the plate and scatter some sesame seeds too. Serve!
- This quantity will make four individual servings.
- Deseed the red chilies and preferably use a sharp kitchen scissor to cut the chilies really fine. It should be cut fine as it should occasionally give a spicy hit to the mouth. It shouldn't be allowed to cower nor should it overpower the sweetness of the mangoes.
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