Another beautiful weekend in the Golden State! We've been exploring and barbecuing with friends which is pretty much perfect. Yesterday (while reading in the shade by a lake) I decided that for dessert tonight, I would make something new. A nice perk of living in such a warm climate is that the produce is super fresh, plentiful, and relatively inexpensive. I had seen mangos at the grocery store in our neighborhood and thought now would be the time to try a mango jelly of some kind. After some Googling, this one seemed the freshest (just one cup of cream and a little lime juice to cut the richness). Our kitchen isn't terribly well-equipped but fortunately, Paige and her husband are generous with their housewares and time. So Paige was my right hand for this one and, as usual, a lovely photographer. She would want me to apologize for the poor lighting and off-coloring of the photos but I won't because they're so much better than my iPhone could have done.
Mango Pudding (via Christine Gallary on Chowhound)
2 1/2 cups cold water
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
1 pound fresh or frozen mango chunks (about 3-4 medium mangos)
2 (1/4-ounce) packets unflavored Knox gelatin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup heavy cream, chilled
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
The first step is to find nice ripe mangos (although frozen works too) - mine were a bargain price of 5 for $5! Then you'll want to decide what to serve the pudding in. Ramekins work, but I also used a few jam jars because I thought it would look nice. Also, Paige has an unusually vast jam jar collection from her wedding five years ago. So pick what you'd like and arrange them on a baking sheet or something easy to transport them into the fridge on.
Next, heat 3/4 cup of the water and 1/2 cup of the sugar in a small saucepan on high. Stir until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is boiling, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat.
Put your mango chunks in a blender, pour in hot sugar mixture, and blend on medium-high until very smooth, about 1 minute. Then pour through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium bowl and, using a rubber spatula, work the mixture through the strainer, discarding any pulp or stringy fibers (don't skip this step!). Measure 2 cups of the purée (reserve any extra purée for another use - a garnish? to stir into plain yogurt? go crazy); set aside.
Again heat 1 1/4 cups of the remaining water in a small saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil. While you're doing that, place the remaining 3/4 cup sugar, gelatin, and salt in a large mixing bowl, add remaining 1/2 cup water, and whisk to incorporate, about 30 seconds. Add the boiling water and whisk until gelatin and sugar are dissolved, about 1 minute.
Finally, whisk in the lime juice, 2 cups of mango purée, and cream (in that order to prevent curdling) until evenly combined. Pour this mixture into your receptacle of choice (I used a ladle) and refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours but that can vary wildly so I would recommend making the morning of or evening before.
To garnish, I added a spoonful of the mango purée and some crumbles of toasted coconut chips. Next time I'll add a spoonful (or three) of whipped cream and extra coconut. So good.
And the crowd went wild.