Its been raining mangoes everywhere, supermarkets, homes and our food blogs of course! The king of fruit has cast his spell on me too and I am can't be immune to his charms, though I try hard. Eating the luscious fruit as is, is the best way I can think of relishing it. A few pieces of the fruit make the perfect dessert and snack, desserts with mango though not a bad idea. Summer has its effects on me, the unflattering and the most noticeable one being my lethargy and the consequent - you said it - tipping of the weighing scales, not entirely in my favor. For the umpteenth time, I wonder, why can't tasty food actually accelerate your BMR? Why should it be so painful and slow to shed the kilos but a snap and a little(??) lethargy to gain them back? Sigh, sigh!!
But then, a dessert with mangoes it has to be, before the season zooms past. A low fat one is even better. And easy ones with minimal effort (and distributed effort at that) are perfect on days when I feel lazy, but a dessert is such a welcome thought. Shrikhand is one dessert I immensely enjoy, for its creaminess, the subtle tang of the yogurt and the flavor of cardamom. I like it even more as it does not have me thinking how much it would contribute to my greedy bathroom scales.
This Maharashtrian sweet dish is basically made of yogurt, drained and thickened, flavored with cardamom and saffron and sometimes fruit puree added for a distinct flavor. Nuts such as chiroli, slivered pistachios or almonds add crunch, a wonderful contrast to the creaminess of the dessert. The only time consuming part of this dessert is draining the yogurt, but you could use packaged thick yogurt to speed up the process. I normally drain the yogurt in the fridge itself as I prefer the yogurt really well drained, yet without too much of tang. Shrikhand is not really shrikhand to me, unless it has a predominant cardamom flavor, so I am generous while adding this.
A shrikhand made with mango puree or Aamrakhand is very popular during the mango season. As is aamras in most Indian households, this being made every other day to go with rotis and sometimes puris on a more indulgent day. Shrikhand is also made with strawberries or even chopped mixed fruit which I plan to try sometime soon. For now, before the mangoes bid adieu, its Mango Shrikhand.
Here is what I did:
Fresh yogurt -3 cups drained to get 1 cup of hung yogurt ( I used regular, but you could also use low fat)
Fresh mango puree - 1 cup ( You may need one very large one or 2 smaller ones. You could use canned pulp too)
Fine grained sugar or powdered sugar - 1 or 2 tablespoons or as needed
Cardamom powder - 1/2 teaspoon
Slivered pistachios for garnish
Procedure: Tie the yogurt in a clean muslin cloth and drain it in the refrigerator with a bowl placed underneath for the whey to drip in. It may take a few hours time to thicken depending on how thick the yogurt is. I drained it overnight as I wanted the yogurt really thick for a very creamy aamrakhand.
Once the yogurt is fully drained, puree the mango till smooth. Strain the puree. Using a wire whisk, whisk together the mango puree and the drained yogurt. Add sugar according to the sweetness of the mangoes and to taste. Mix in the cardamom powder. Divide between serving bowls, garnish with nuts and chill.