Summer in India is synonymous to Mango for Foodies. Each state in our country boasts of having varied varieties of this king of fruits. Also, each state has its own favourite Mango recipe. Be it sweet or savoury, mango is enjoyed as a core ingredient in many dishes. The list of delectables made with mango is endless.
Its no wonder that with the mango season around, I had to try them in a recipe apart from eating them as a fruit. Having tried Mango Mousse, Mango cheesecake and Mango & Banana Gelato last year, I decided to try this traditional Sandesh. With authentic Bengali recipes I always blindly trust Sayantani's blog A homemaker's diary. Her breathtaking pictures and simple recipes always turn out amazing.
With this attempt I also learned about the Paak sandesh. Paak means cooked. The kneaded chenna which is cooked very little to achieve a melt-in-your mouth texture is called Norom Paak Sandesh-Soft cooked Sandesh. You also have a Kora Paak Sandesh which is cooked for a longer time resulting in hard sweet. Kora means hard.
The Aam Sandesh, a Norom Paak Sandesh, true to its name turned out super soft and just melted away. The mango flavour come out just strong enough to confirm its presence. Being another Sweet day on our blog, it was the perfect recipe to make and share.
I used the Tamol Paan holder that I had bought from my recent trip to Guwahati. It is a made of brass and is used to greet guests with Tamol(betel nut) and Paan(betel leaf). We were gifted with Gamosa/Gamcha which is hand weaved and is very traditional to the people of Assam. You may see it wrapped on the Tamol paan holder in the pic beneath.
Recipe Source : Adapted from A Homemaker's Diary
Ingredients: For 8-9 pieces
- 500 ml Full cream milk
- 1/2 cup Mango pulp (I used Himsagar)
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp lime juice/a pinch of citric acid
- chopped Cardamom for garnishing
Take milk in a pan and bring it to a boil.
Mix in the lime juice or citric acid and stir till you see the milk curdling and the whey separating.
Turn off the flame and let it stand for 2 mins. Meanwhile prepare a vessel by placing a muslin cloth or use a colander.
Strain the mixture into the muslin cloth. I usually save the whey to use it to knead my dough for roti or use it while boiling dal.
Bring the sides of the muslin cloth together and hang it to drain excess liquid for 30 mins. This is the Chenna.
Take the chenna in a plate and knead it with the heel of your palm for 5-10 mins till you get a smooth and doughy texture.
Prepare mango pulp by processing a chopped ripe mango in a mixer. Strain it to remove any threads.
In a non stick pan, add the mango pulp and mix in the sugar. You may avoid adding the sugar if you want the natural sweetness of mango.
Add the kneaded chenna to it and on low flame keep stirring continuously to avoid burning the chenna.
The chenna will gradually change colour as it gets mixed with the mango pulp and will become lumpy. This should take 10-15 mins of continuous stirring.
This is called 'Makha' or 'Ready to be moulded' stage.
Remove from heat and allow to cool enough to handle with hands.
Grease your Sandesh moulds (though after my first attempt I saw that I did not require greasing others as the chenna had enough oil on its own)
Take little of the makha and press it on the mould gently. Smoothen the edges and take it out of the mould from one end very carefully.
Repeat with the rest of the makha.
Press some chopped pistachios on top.
- If you do not have the Sandesh moulds, simply shape them in rounds balls and press the top with a finger tip to place the chopped pista.
- You may try them with other fruits too like strawberry.