A bucket of mangoes
March 20, 2008 4:21 PM   Subscribe

Help me make the best mango lassi in the world.

I've just discovered a trove of the most flavorful mangoes imaginable at my local veggie mart, and coincidentally am invited to a dinner of Indian food this weekend. I want to whip up a pitcher of the ultimate mango lassis, but the one other time I tried this I failed miserably. Please help me with some tried and true lassi recipes!
posted by TungstenChef to Food & Drink (15 answers total) 47 users marked this as a favorite
Can't help you with the Lassi (though I have a recipe around here somewhere... argh!)--but if you want a recipe for a terrific non-bake Mango Cobbler, lemme know and I'll post it. It requires a food processor.
posted by dobbs at 4:58 PM on March 20, 2008

Response by poster: I would love a no-bake Mango Cobbler! If I can find enough things to do with them I just might buy out my grocer.
posted by TungstenChef at 5:06 PM on March 20, 2008

I always make lassi to taste. It's different every time, due to the variation in mangoes, I suppose now that I think about it. I don't know how authentic it is, but I use yogurt, a little milk, sugar and mango cubes, blended with ice. My blender sucks, but it's usually decent. You can adjust proportions as you go to arrive at the taste you want. I hope this helps, because I really think the world would be a better place if more people could enjoy a really good mango lassi.
posted by Shohn at 5:25 PM on March 20, 2008

Many Indian restaurants don't use fresh mangoes for their lassi - they use a thick bottled "nectar" like Looza.

That said, I've made lassi at home several times with nice fresh mangoes. I just wing it. Mango, yogurt, sugar. I've never really bothered with ice - I don't much care for it in my lassi.

Just like Shohn says, though, I usually have to do a fair bit of adjusting to taste. More or less yogurt, more or less sugar, etc.

If yours was tasting funny to you, could it be because of your yogurt? The yogurt you get in Indian markets isn't quite the same as the Dannon or Yoplait variety you might pick up at the supermarket. It's not sweetened with HFCS or artificially flavored. When I've tried to use supermarket yogurt in recipes, they always taste odd.
posted by kaseijin at 5:54 PM on March 20, 2008

Haven't made lassi in a while, but we've used good yogurt (Nancy's and Straus are both delicious), and - the secret - added some good-quality, no-HFCS mango sorbet to the blender. Since you've got access to good mangoes, you can even make your own!

Oh - and add a little salt to the lassi (when it's in the blender). Salt brings out the depth of the mango flavor.
posted by rtha at 5:58 PM on March 20, 2008 [1 favorite]

Try some honey instead of sugar in the lassi.
You might be suprised
posted by citybuddha at 6:06 PM on March 20, 2008

Best answer: Kickass Fresh Mango Cobbler


3 cups raw pecans
1 vanilla bean, scraped
3/4 tsp sea salt
3/4 cup pitted dates


3/4 cup pitted dates
3 tbs coconut oil (aka coconut butter -- available at health food store. get the raw, unpastueurized unrefined kind)
1/2 vanilla bean
2/3 cup water, as needed


4 - 5 ripe mangoes, peeled and sliced (about 7 cups)

To make crust, process pecans, vanilla bean, and salt into a powder in your food processor. Add 3/4 cups dates and process until well mixed. Sprinkle half of the crust into the bottom of your serving dish and set aside. (Don't bother rinsing out food processor.)

To make syrup, process the dates, coconut oil, vanilla bean, and water as needed to make a thick syrup. Set aside.

Place the mangoes into a large mixing bowl and pour in the syrup. Mix very well.

Spoon mango mix onto crust. Top with remaining crust.

Keeps in the fridge for 2 days.

This dish absolutely kicks ass. I make it for parties all the time. Last time there was in fact an Indian guest. He loved it.
posted by dobbs at 6:13 PM on March 20, 2008 [10 favorites]

Best answer: Lime juice makes it tart-er--I've made a variation with rose water instead of lime juice but the cardamom and salt are key

2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup chopped ripe mango
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

Combine all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.
posted by beckish at 6:40 PM on March 20, 2008 [6 favorites]

If your yogurt is only so-so (and not amazingly creamy and delicious like Straus) you can vastly improve it by draining the whey first. It makes even nonfat taste really creamy, using this in your lassi will up the creaminess without diluting the mango flavor.

It's really easy to do if you plan ahead, basically just stick a strainer over a bowl with a clean dishcloth in it and then dump the yogurt inside. Flip the edges of the cloth over the top and stick in the fridge overnight. It'll roll right out of the cloth when it's done, then just mix in a little milk to thin it. Somehow even thinning with water afterwards makes it end up a lot creamier than it started, not sure how that works but it does.
posted by cali at 7:31 PM on March 20, 2008

Cardamom is the secret to awesome mango lassis.

I've gone both directions, either mixing chopped mangoes in a blender with yogurt, or getting the mango nectar from Looza. The chopped mangoes with yogurt will taste creamier, so I definitely recommend this when possible.

Either way, you want about a 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of ground cardamom per 8 oz glass of mango lassi. This depends on your taste for cardamom.

You can get pre-ground cardamom spice from your local grocery, or hit up a spice store or "international" grocers for cardamom pods, which you can grind yourself with a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle.

I prefer pods, but I don't always have access to them, so I keep a jar of the ground stuff.

Hope you enjoy it!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:42 PM on March 20, 2008 [1 favorite]

Why not make your own yoghurt?
It's easy and when you use good quality milk, makes an authentic lassi, even more lassified.

Or that's what we do. Best of luck possum, send us some over when you're done. I lurve a good mango lassi!
posted by taff at 8:11 PM on March 20, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks all, the host requested a dessert and the cobbler is perfect. I'm going to buy a few extra keep some lassi for myself.
posted by TungstenChef at 9:05 PM on March 20, 2008

Half and half yoghurt and water, the same volume again of mango pulp.
posted by Dr.Pill at 11:58 AM on March 21, 2008

Response by poster: Ok, I made the cobbler this weekend and it turned out crazy delicious. The topping/syrup was a huge winner, and I can't wait to try the same treatment to a tart of summer berries, or a bunch of fresh peaches with cinnamon. I think the topping would be really good too if it were added for maybe the last 10 minutes of baking a crisp, it would develop a great toasty flavor.

One caveat, don't try to make the syrup like I did by just putting everything in the food processor and turning it on, big mess. My second attempt turned out much better, I treated it like pesto and put the dry ingredients in and processed them to a paste. Then I added the coconut butter, and finally the water in a thin stream while the processor was running and it formed a beautiful emulsion.
posted by TungstenChef at 9:54 AM on March 24, 2008

TungstenChef, glad the cobbler worked out well.

Since you mentioned Berries, here's an alternate version, again, it's a raw dish:



1 cup raw (ie, not roasted) pumpkin seeds
1 cup raw almonds
3/4 tsp sea salt
4 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup pitted dates


1 cup blueberries
1/2 cup pitted dates
1/4 cup water, as needed


1 1/2 cup blackberries and/or blueberries

In food processor, pulse pumpkin seeds, almonds, salt, olive oil until mixture becomes dough like consistency. Slowly add dates and mix into a "dough".

Cover the bottom of the pie dish with this crust

Syrup: In a blender, blend blueberries and dates, adding enough water to make a THICK syrupy texture.

To serve, pour berry syrup on top of crust, top with topping.

Keeps in the fridge 2 days.

Like the previous recipe, this is from Ani's Raw Food Kitchen, a terrific book!
posted by dobbs at 8:04 PM on April 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

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