Over the last few weeks I’ve been gorging myself on delicious Kesar mangoes from India. Alphonso mangoes haven’t been as good this year, their flavour not as sweet and their scent not as perfumed as usual but the Kesar ones have been delicious. I’ve bought box after box from my local Asian grocery store, shared with family and friends or eaten at home with sleeves rolled up and an apron protecting my clothes.
The last box I picked up wasn’t ready to eat when I bought it so I had to wait, impatiently, for the fruits to ripen. When they did, they all ripened at the same time and it wasn’t long before they continued onwards from ‘perfectly ripe’ to ‘starting to go brown’. I quickly cut open the last four and scooped all the flesh out before they turned. That left me with 700 grams of top quality sweet and fragrant mango flesh in the fridge.
I thought about freezing the mango flesh in small portions to throw straight from the freezer into smoothies or instant sorbets. But my thoughts went instead to a recent family barbeque in which my mum had made lassi, which we enjoyed while eating sweet, ripe mangoes.
Lassi, for those who aren’t familiar with it, is a popular Indian drink made from natural yoghurt and water. It can be made sweet or salty, the former often enhanced with rosewater or kewra essence, the latter with spices such as cumin. More recently it’s become common to add fruit, with mango lassi becoming increasingly popular both in India and worldwide.
I’m not the first to think of translating mango lassi into ice lolly form – it’s an instinctive idea during the hot summer months. It’s also a great way to enjoy top quality mangoes beyond the all-too-brief mango season.
For these mango lassi ice lollies I debated whether or not to blend the mango flesh into the yoghurt but decided to keep the two elements separate so that some bites are sweet and heady with mango, while others are refreshingly tart from the yoghurt.
If you prefer, you can blend mango and yoghurt together for an all-in-one style ice lolly.
Mango Lassi Ice Lollies
Delicious mango and natural yoghurt ice pops
- 700 g fresh mango flesh
- 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice, (about 1 medium lime, juiced)
- sugar to sweeten the mango, to taste (optional)
- 500 g thick full-fat natural yoghurt
- sugar to sweeten the yoghurt, to taste (optional)
You will also need lolly moulds and lolly sticks. I use disposable plastic cups as moulds, and traditional lolly sticks (easily purchased online).
As these mangoes were very sweet, I didn’t add any sugar but if yours aren’t sweet enough, add sugar while blending, to taste. You want the mix to be a touch sweeter than ideal, as freezing always mutes sweetness a little.
Likewise, my natural yoghurt was very tart, so I mixed 50 grams of sugar into it – just enough to soften the tartness without eliminating it.
In a blender, combine the mango flesh and lime juice and blend until smooth. If you are adding sugar, add a little at a time, blend thoroughly and taste again before adding more if needed.
If adding sugar to the yoghurt, fold it in by hand or your yoghurt will lose its naturally thick texture.
Assemble your lolly moulds – as you can see I use 'disposable' plastic cups but usually clean and reuse at least a few times before they break.
Spoon in dollops of the mango mixture and the yoghurt in turn, swirl with a lolly stick to mix if needed.
Insert a lolly stick into each mould. If using cups rather than custom-designed ice lolly moulds, you may need to use elastic bands or masking tape to hold the stick upright – mine stayed upright on their own as the mango and yoghurt mixtures were both quite thick.
Freeze upright for 24 hours.
Once frozen, unmould individual lollies by dipping each mould into a bowl of hot water for a few seconds before pulling the ice lolly gently out.
If you’re a fan of fresh fruit lollies, you may also like my roasted banana ice lollies and my eton mess strawberry cream and meringue ice lollies.
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