chinese new year: mango pudding

Gung Hay Fat Choy! Today is Chinese New Year and to ring in the Year of the Horse, I’m cooking up, as requested by Rock, a ‘Chinese feast’ for a bunch of friends.  Thankfully, I get every other Friday off of work and this just so happens to be one of those Fridays.  Rock is super into this blog right now and he wants me to post about the dinner so this will be the first of a series of posts for Chinese New Year (I’m making desserts starting in the morning because all the main dishes will need to be cooked pretty much right before eating).  To be perfectly honest, I don’t really cook Chinese food all that often and my Chinese New Year dinners are always out at restaurants.  But I know what legit good Chinese food is (it’s not chicken balls, general tso’s chicken, and egg rolls) so I figured, I can do this.  Plus, if I’m going to be in Moose Jaw for an indeterminate amount of time, I really want to up my game in Chinese cooking.  Anyway, my sister loves mangos and suggested I make this so, even though she’s celebrating in Vancouver, here it is.

3 cups well-pureed mangos (I used thawed frozen mango chunks but if you can get your hands on fresh ripe ones, by all means use those instead)  /  2 envelopes of unflavoured gelatine  /  1 cup boiling hot water  /  3/4 cup sugar  /  1 cup of ice-cold water  /  1 cup 2% evaporated milk

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For the mangos, just puree them with a hand blender or a food processor.  A bunch of recipes for mango pudding call for sieving the puree but I don’t have a sieve and I really don’t think it makes that much difference but feel free to do so if you’d like.  After boiling the water, stir in with the gelatine and sugar until it is all dissolved.  In a separate large bowl, combine the mango puree, the evaporated milk, and the ice-cold water.  Stir in the gelatine-sugar mixture until it’s all thoroughly mixed in.  Pour the mixture into a 9 and 1/2 inch pie plate (or if you’d like you can pour them into small bowls or ramekins to make individual portions) and chill in the fridge until set.  This should take around 3 hours but if you make individual portions you can probably get away with less chilling time.

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I don’t think I’ve made anything using gelatine in probably over 10 years so I wasn’t particularly confident that this would set.  I kept jiggling it while it was chilling but it all turned out well.  I haven’t had mango pudding in a few years but I don’t recall this pudding ever being really firm or anything  so a bit of jiggle is good.  You’ll have some evaporated milk leftover so if you’d like, you can just set it aside to chill in the fridge and then when serving, pour a bit over the pudding.  I feel like in Chinese restaurants, they always have a bit of evaporated milk poured over top, I guess just to make it look kinda pretty? so why not since you’ve got the leftover!

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