Monday, 28 May 2012

Recipe: Mango Barfi

India's favourite fruit - Indian mangoes - are ripe and in season! This will bring a burst of sunshiney joy to most people I know of South Asian descent, who eagerly await this time of year for these scarce few weeks when we are able to purchase the fruit here in England. There is no flavour like it, yes you can get the tinned pulp of the 'Kesar Keri/Mango' all year round in Indian supermarkets but it's just not the same. Neither are the greenish-red skinned mangoes of the West Indies, nothing compares to the sweet, fruity, delicious flavour from the saffron orange mangoes from India and Pakistan when they are at their peak season.

For years we have tried to recreate this flavour in the Devnaa kitchen, how wonderful it would be if we could offer this amazing aroma to our customers all year round but alas, absolutely nothing compares to the real deal. So, with the fruit in season and us having purchased boxes full to enjoy while we can, I snuck two mangoes out of the box when nobody was looking to create this mango barfi recipe that's easy to make and everybody can enjoy at home. Keep it chilled in the fridge once made and consume within 2 days, if it lasts that long!

I should mention that there are many recipes for mango barfi available on the Internet and this one is a little different from the rest, this one is just a bit easier with the use of milk powder and we prefer the smooth, indulgent texture and light flavour gained from this method. Perfect for summer :)

Mango Barfi (makes about 20 pieces)


2 ripe kesar mangoes
100g sweetened condensed milk
100ml double cream
1/4 tsp vanilla seeds (or extract if you don't have seeds)
brown sugar to taste (if required)
250g milk powder
3 cardamom pods
some good quality dark chocolate, optional.

  • First the messy bit - slice the mangoes, remove the skin and place all of the flesh in a food processor. (I got about 250g worth of flesh but the quantity will depend on the mangoes, bear in mind that the other ingredients in this recipe were calculated using 250g of mango pulp).
  • Pulse the fruit to make a puree and then strain this puree through a fine metal sieve and into a measuring jug. You should end up with smooth, thick mango pulp.
  • Add the condensed milk to the mango pulp, mix well and then pour the mixture into a non stick wok.
  • Place over a gentle heat and cook, stirring continuously, until reduced by half.
  • Add the cream and the vanilla seeds and continue to cook until the mixture becomes really thick.
  • Taste the mixture at this stage, taking care whilst doing so as it will be extremely hot. If you feel you need to, add some brown sugar to taste and then continue to cook down.
  • The mixture is ready for the next step if when you draw a line through it with your spatula, it holds for 2 seconds before coming together again.
  • Add about three quarters of the milk powder and mix well to create a smooth dough that comes clean away from the wok. Add more milk powder if required.
  • Turn off the heat, crush the cardamom (fresh cardamom really makes a difference in this recipe however if you don't have it to hand you can use ready ground), and mix it into the dough.
  • Set in silicone moulds or a tray. Allow to cool completely before refrigerating.
  • Set in the fridge for at least 1 hour before demoulding or cutting into pieces.
  • If using dark chocolate, gently melt the chocolate and dip or drizzle the pieces as required. Set on greaseproof paper and then refrigerate the barfi until ready to serve.
  • Best served chilled.

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