The classic Indian flavor combination of cardamom and mango bring new life to this healthy dessert. If you love chia seed pudding, this is going to be your new favorite make ahead treat!
Aahh… cardamom & mango… flavors that go together like peanut butter and jelly, like enormous quads and Autumn Calabrese, like goat cheese and sweet potatoes, like fried chicken and guilt, like veggies and 21 Day Fix Ranch, like… ok, you get the picture.
Anyway, I know plenty of people who’ve neither had cardamom nor mango, so let’s take a second to talk about each. Cardamom is a sweet Indian spice, it’ll be love at first smell, I promise. It’s used in both sweet and savory dishes, such as puddings (like this one!) and curries.
As far as mango goes, I’m betting you’ve had mango-flavored items (I’ve been known to enjoy the occasional mango margarita, for instance 🙂 ) but you may have never had it fresh. Unfamiliar produce can be kind of intimidating. What do I do with it, how do I know when or if it’s ripe, how do I store it? So here are the answers to your questions:
- When is it ripe? First of all, I just want to point out that the color on the outside has nothing to do with ripeness (like an apple). It’s ripe when it starts to soften. Soft but not too soft, sort of like a peach or an avocado. When you buy it, it’ll likely be very hard. Leave it out on the counter for a few days until it gives to gentle pressure. Once it’s ripe, stick it in the fridge until you’re ready to use it. It’ll last several more days in the fridge.
- How do I cut it? I’m about to go off book here. The rule of thumb is to slice off the “cheeks” of the mango around the large flat seed, then score (like you would an avocado), pop it inside out to slice of the cubes that the scoring creates. However, that’s not what I do (though it’s probably easier, I just hate to see all of the excess get wasted.) I peel it with a vegetable peeler – be very careful if you do this, things get slippery and I will not be held responsible for sliced appendages! Then I cut as much off around the seed as I can.
- What do I do with it? Start with adding it to your cardamom anything… how about some cardamom french toast with chopped mango? That sounds so good right now! Or you can just eat it by itself, it’s absolutely my favorite fruit and it definitely is amazing all on it’s own. I’ll have to think of some other fun uses for mango, but I’m in a hurry right now (sorry guys!), so I’ll get back to you on that.
Ok, so all of that being said, I just want to tell you that I tested this recipe with frozen, thawed mango to see how it would work out. I’d never thawed it out before, usually I buy it frozen just for smoothies or sorbet, but I’ve never actually eaten it as is. Best surprise ever, it worked beautifully! In fact, the chopped mango in the pictures is the frozen mango that I thawed. It was delicious, people. – Another quick note about that, the recipe has one half of a cup of chopped mango and that is what I use, but if I would have put it all in the pics, you wouldn’t have been able to see the pudding!
Well, writing this post is really making me want some cardamom chia seed pudding and since I have a couple of these beauties waiting on me in the fridge… adios muchachos!