A quick and delicious breakfast for us this morning. The perfect antidote to a very grey day in Wales, some tropical flava! We managed to pick up/ save some very ripe mangoes recently and have been trying out coconut water, which seems like a bit of a craze at the minute. Mangoes and coconut, beaches and palm trees, a little escapism from the dark nights and storms of our little hillside retreat.
A lassi is something like an Indian milkshake that comes in many varieties, basically salty or sweet, but there are so many ways this yoghurt based drink can be enjoyed. Salted lassi is lovely, normally flavoured with a little ground cumin. Lassi’s are easily made vegan with the addition of non-dairy milk and vegan yoghurt, both are best used unsweetened we find. You can then control which and how much sweetener you choose to use, if any. The mango and coconut water are already sweet here and any sweetener is really only needed to give the sweet tooth a little treat.
We’ve eaten mangoes all over the world, but have to say that the best are Indian. I don’t think any other country reveres a fruit quite like Indians with their mangoes. Maybe the French with grapes?! Italians with tomatoes?!! Brits with apples?!! Its out there for discussion. Surely having a mango tree in your garden is a sign of very good karma though! Especially in Wales!!
The sheer diversity of mangoes in India is bewildering and the season is anticipated like the festive season over here. Mangoes are now very expensive in India, especially certain highly regarded varieties like Alphonso, Badami, Chausa, Dasheri…..there are loads. Where are you favourite Mangoes from? Thailand and the Philippines are closely behind India in the mango nirvana stakes for sure. The ones we bought here were from Brazil(!)
Adding turmeric to lassi’s is an age old remedy for stomach complaints in the sub-continent and we like adding turmeric to anything, such is it’s vibrant health giving properties (not to mention the colour! WHAM!! YELLOW!!!)
We are drinking these in autumnal Wales and need no extra chilling. If you happen to be in a nice hot part of the globe (well done!) you may like to add a few ice cubes to the lassi and decrease the coconut water a little. You could also freeze your coconut water into ice cubes, this works brilliantly and adds a lovely coco twist to cold drinks.
Other lassi varieties you could try:
Strawberry, Pineapple and Mint, Avocado and Lime, Beetroot and Thyme, Chocolate and Pistachio, Apple and Chai Spiced…….
You may also like to check out the brilliant Vegan Richa’s recipe for a spicy Thandai Lassi.
How to pick a ripe mango? Well worth knowing.
Mangoes are such a treat in Wales, they don’t come our way very often. We think a lassi is the perfect home for a nice ripe mango and a breath of bright tropical air in the early dark nights and rain clouds of beautiful Wales.
If are struggling to find coconut water, go for non-dairy milk (like soya or almond) and even straight water will make a good lassi.
If you can get ground cardamom, please do. Just a sprinkle on the top transforms the lassi. Cardamom and Indian sweets got together perfectly, but remember that too much can be overpowering. Lightly sprinkle.
These lassi’s are made without turmeric, so the colour is a little lighter.
The Bits – Makes two small glasses
1 mango (peeled and de-stoned)
175ml coconut water
5 tbs dairy free yoghurt
1-2 teas sweetener (we used brown rice syrup)
1/2 teas turmeric (optional)
Pinch cardamom powder
Pop all ingredients into a blender and blitz until smooth and creamy. Check the sweetness and you can even add more yoghurt for extra creaminess.
Pour into your finest glassware and sprinkle over a little cardamom and chopped almonds or pistachios for a real authentic India style.
Soya is packed full of protein and coconut has amazingly healthy fats. Mangoes are very high in vitamin A and C……as far as breakfasts go, this is a smooth and tasty winner!