How goes a Mango?
Apart from summer berries, one of the fruits that I love eating this time of year in Australia is the mango. My parents, being South-East Asian, ate a lot of mangoes throughout my childhood, so I grew up sharing their love of this sweet, fleshy fruit. Normally, we would eat mangoes after dinner as an after dinner dessert. My parents weren’t really big on cakes or anything like that after dinner; instead, we would have a plate of fruit and an Asian tea of some sort. Boy, have things changed since I left home! I’ve transitioned from having fruit to having ‘proper’ dessert, that is, baked goods, cakes, chocolate and other sweet delights! Reminiscing about family dinners got me thinking. Why not combine the two kinds of desserts? Whilst flicking through the December 2013 issue of Taste.com.au magazine, I came across a feature article on mangoes. A beautiful mango tart with a lemongrass custard filling caught my eye which I thought was a perfect mash up of my past love and my current love of desserts. There was a slight hitch making this tart though. The fluted tart pan I have is a little bigger that what the original recipe called for, so the filling layer was not as thick as I would’ve liked, but the combination of flavours was still very tasty! This tart serves 6 people.
How goes a Mango tart
300ml thickened cream
3 lemongrass stems, bruised
3 egg yolks
⅓ cup (75g) caster sugar
1 bronze-strength gelatine leaf (equates to 3.3g of gelatine)
2 ripe mangoes, peeled, thinly sliced
1⅓ cups (200g) plain flour (I used Lighthouse Biscuit & Pastry Plain Flour)
100g chilled unsalted butter, chopped
⅓ cup (30g) desiccated coconut
1 tbs icing sugar
Chuck the cream and lemongrass in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to just below boiling point, remove from the heat and set aside for 1 hour to infuse.
To make the pastry, blitz the flour, butter, coconut and icing sugar in a processor to combine. Add 3 tbs chilled water, then blitz again until the mixture comes together in a ball. Wrap the pastry dough in cling wrap and whack in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
Roll the pastry on a lightly floured surface to 2mm thick. I did this part on some lightly floured baking paper, so the pastry wouldn’t stick to my bench top. Grease a 13cm x 36cm loose-bottomed tart pan (the original recipe calls for a 10cm x 34cm tart pan) and line the tart pan with the pastry, trimming any excess. Whack it in the fridge to chill for 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 180°C (fan forced). Line the pastry with baking paper and evenly place some pastry weights or uncooked rice over the top. Blind-bake the pastry for 10 minutes, then carefully remove the baking paper and weights, and return to the oven for 5-7 minutes or until golden, crisp and dry (you can bake the case for longer if necessary, but keep checking so it doesn’t end up burnt). Set the pastry aside to cool in the tart pan.
Beat the yolks and sugar with an electric beater until thick and pale. Add the cream, making sure you remove the lemongrass first. Soak the gelatine leaf in cold water for 5 minutes. Pour the cream mixture into a saucepan and cook over low heat for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly, until thickened slightly. Remove from heat. Squeeze the excess water from the gelatine, and add to the cream mixture. Stir to completely dissolve the gelatine. Cool the cream mixture completely, before pouring into the tart case. Chill for a couple of hours until it’s firm, then top with overlapping mango slices.
Note: I’ve made very minor changes to the original recipe based on what I had on hand at the time, so if you would like to see the original recipe, click here.