We are utterly in love, in fact, besotted with shrikhand. Whether it is plain or flavored with cardamom, the chilled delicacy is the perfect escape from the blistering heat of Indian summers.
Since during this time, all things revolve around mangoes too, I decided to combine the two loves of our life and make mango shrikhand.
What is shrikhand?
Shrikhand or srikhand is a creamy and thoroughly refreshing sweet dish avidly popular in India, tracing its origin to Gujarat and Maharashtra as far back as 400 B.C. (I guess that makes shrikhand the oldest sweet dish on our shores?)
It is made with hung yogurt and has this unbelievably thick, rich, and luxurious texture. Not only is it nutritious, filling, and delicious, but also very easy to prepare at home.
Mango shrikhand, or also known as amarkhand, is one of the common (and frankly the most delightful) variations of the dish.
How to Make Mango Shrikhand?
The light dessert has a wee tang from the yogurt, brightening the sweet taste of mangoes and a surprising pop of color from the saffron. It feels less like a mouthful of yogurt and more like a bite of chilled cream.
To make it, you hang full-fat yogurt in a muslin cloth overnight. The next morning when all the water is drained into a bowl kept underneath, you hand whisk the hung yogurt.
Once it is creamy, add in raw sugar, fresh mango puree, and a tinge of cardamom. Because I adore the lovely combination of mango and saffron, a few strands of it also went into the shrikhand.
After all the ingredients are in, whisk it again till the mixture is smooth.
I used the extraordinarily juicy and delectable pairi mango for the shrikhand. But safeda would do in a blink too. Alphonso or Kesar mango are the best for this.
I prefer chunky pieces of the fruit with every spoonful of shrikhand, so my mango puree was not blended to a lump-free level. Traditionally, a smooth puree is used.
Don’t have access to fresh mangoes? Any good-quality canned mango puree works like a charm.
For the yogurt, homemade is best. But plain Greek yogurt will work in a pinch, and you won’t even need to hang it. Irrespective of which you use, it has to be full-fat!
A lot of people prefer powdered sugar to make mango shrikhand. If that’s the case, use your coffee grinder to blend your granulated sugar. I didn’t as my raw sugar was already super fine.
The sweetness of the mangoes and the sourness of your yogurt decides the amount of sugar. I recommend giving the shrikhand a taste test and then adjusting as required.
Lastly, and most importantly, avoid the blender when mixing hung yogurt with all the ingredients. It makes the shrikhand runny and watery.
Whisking by hand does the trick. It may take 3 to 4 minutes extra, but the effort is well worth it when you have that gorgeous thick consistency.
Serving the Mango Shrikhand
The fresh, juicy mangoes, the velvety, thick yogurt, and the sunshine spice definitely make mango shrikhand a go-to dessert. But what makes it a mainstay in summers is its cooling effect.
Serve it chilled by letting it sit in the fridge for a few hours.
When you are ready to dig in, garnish it with slivers of pistachio, almond, dried rose petals, and saffron. I ran all out of mangoes; else, I would have loved to top it up with some pieces!
The ideal pairing for mango shrikhand is hot off the stove pooris. But the temperature here was too high for me to fry some, so we enjoyed ice-cool bowls of it as a light dessert after dinner.
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- 600 gms Full fat yogurt
- 3/4 cup Mango puree
- 1/4 cup Raw sugar
- 1 tsp Cardamom powder
- 1/2 tsp Saffron Strands, soaked in 1 tbsp warm milk
- Slivered almonds, pistachios, dried rose petals
- Place the yogurt in a cheesecloth lined sieve. Place the sieve on a bowl, to catch the whey from the yogurt as it drains.
- Leave this to drain overnight or at least 4-5 hours in the refrigerator.
- Mix the drained yogurt with the mango puree, cardamom powder, saffron and raw sugar.
- Whisk well till the mixture is thick, smooth and lumpfree.
- Taste and adjust for sweetness.
- Transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with pistachios, almonds and rose petals.
- Chill for another 1-2 hours. Serve cold. Enjoy!