Ricotta Mango Parfait
This is a wonderful dessert made using fresh ricotta. Its summertime and mangoes are in the season. So, we thought of making a very simple dessert with very few ingredients. You’ll find almost everything at home. You won’t have to go grocery shopping and can make this quickly for a sudden dessert craving after lunch. It’s beautiful to serve even for a summer dinner party. Make it in individual glasses or bowls beforehand and its very easy to serve.
Firstly, you’ll need mangoes and the most important ingredient of this dessert is fresh ricotta. You can make it at home using our recipe for ricotta. You can also use a store-bought one. If you’re making it at home, you’ll just need milk and lemons. The third layer for this is made using crushed digestive biscuits of graham crackers whichever you can find and butter. We will be using some lemon zest and a little bit of fresh cream or condensed milk, whatever suits your liking.
In a bowl put the chopped mangoes and add some lemon zest and lemon juice to it and keep aside. In another bowl crush the biscuits with a rolling pin and add melted butter and mix. In the third bowl take the ricotta and whisk it well to soften it. Now add condensed milk to it and mix well. If you’re using cream instead of condensed milk, add that along with very little powdered sugar. the ricotta will turn into a thick sauce like in the picture above.
Take a shallow and wide glass, or wine or martini glass. You can also take the Mumbai-style cutting chai glass. Anything that has a characteristic shape and is transparent. Put the biscuit mixture at the base.
Now spoon some ricotta cream mixture on top. Be careful not to dirty the wall of the glass because the beauty of the dessert is in being able to see the layers. Thats the reason its called a parfait. In French, parfait means perfect. Later in the 1800’s, desserts that were beautifully layered with precision, came to be called parfait. That is exactly what this is and thus we called it Ricotta Mango Parfait. And ricotta being an Italian cheese traditionally, this is a beautiful fusion of a French-Italian dessert. The two countries do share a lot of common ingredients and food influences.
Then go the macerated mangoes on top of the ricotta cream. They’ll be soft and soaked by now.
Then the biscuit mixture again. The biscuit gives it the crusty flavour that a cheesecake has. Thus, you can actually make a cheesecake with the same method. The only difference will be, you don’t multi layer it. For the cheesecake take a loose-bottom tin or a springform tin. Put the biscuit mixture and press it down to form a crusty layer that doesn’t disintegrate on un-moulding. Put a high layer of the ricotta cream mixture. Chill for a bit. Then top with the mangoes and refrigerate till set. Un-mould and et voila!
Finally, top it with a generous amount of mangoes. Mangoes taste very good in this dessert, however, you can also make this with other fruits. You can use any citrus fruit or berries – strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, kiwi, peaches and cherries. Comment with more ideas and we’ll tell you if that would go well or not.
Now you can actually see the layers. mangoes add a beautiful yellow to it. Thats how the layers should be , so make sure to keep the glass neat and put the mixture for various layers in the centre, then spread to the side. That way you’ll avoid messing it up.
Now put the mint leaves to garnish. They will add a refreshing fragrance, taste and colour to your parfait. Instead of the clichéd garnish of one bunch in the centre, put smaller segments of mint leaves in 2-3 places. This is because its already high in the centre and you don’t want to add more height with your garnish in this case. You just want to add colour and character.You can also garnish with pistachios or dried blueberries or cranberries.
…and TA-DA! Your start dessert is ready. Chill it in the fridge to set the layers. It also tasted best chilled in the summers.
Recipe: Ricotta Mango Parfait
250 gm Fresh Ricotta 3 mangoes, Peeled and cut into cubes 150 gm digestive biscuits, crushed 50gm Amul Butter 4tbsp Amul Mithai Mate/ Condensed Milk or AmulFresh Cream 2 Lemons Mint leaves for garnish
Zest 2 lemons over the cut mangoes. Then put the juice of 1 lemon in the mango . Mix well and keep aside.
Crush the biscuits using a rolling pin. Melt the butter and mix it well with the crushed biscuits.
Using a whisk just beat the ricotta a little. Mix the condensed milk with the ricotta to get a thick sauce.
In a glass start by putting a little amount of the biscuit mix. Over that layer 2 spoons of the ricotta cream and then a layer of the lemony mango.
Repeat with biscuit, ricotta cream and finishing with the mango.
Garnish with mint leaves and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. Enjoy chilled.
If you want to make a pie or a cheesecake out of this you can spread the biscuit mixture in the pie dish or cheesecake mould. Then press the biscuit mixture firmly. Over that spread the ricotta cream and then finally the mangoes. Chill this in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours. If making a cheesecake make sure the ricotta cream is not very runny but a little thick.
You can also do the above in a regular flat glass dish for a big party and let it set by chilling in the refrigerator for 3-4 hours.
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