Saturday, 26 March 2011

Mango Ginger Crisps for Cook the Books

Generally we Canadians see mangoes only in the supermarket, and if we are very lucky they might have a special on a case. This doesn't happen that often, but it seems fortuitous when it does. Of course we also have enough peoples here from mango growing countries to let us know that these supermarket offerings don't begin to compare to fresh grown mangoes. Something most of us have to take their words for, as we lug home our cases.

But Canadians Ann Vanderhoof and Steve Manley set sail for a two year trip to the Caribbean and West Indies, a middle-age adventure and leap of faith, and discovered the wonders of real, fresh tropical fruits, exotic fish, and the warm welcome of the people who lived there.

Vanderhoof has a publishing background with Cottage Life Magazine, and chronicled their adventures wonderfully. From her own reluctance to being a full-time sailor, the trials and tribulations of life as first-time "cruisers" and the joy of discovery along the way, Ann includes us all.

Reading the book is a mini-vacation in itself, and will have you longing for turquoise waters and pristine sands and, of course, an embarrassment of mangoes.

For our bookclub dish I baked up a version of Ann's Mango Crisp, and, if I close my eyes, I can pretend I am on a tropical island and not in minus 13 degree weather in Canadian so-called Spring.

Mango Ginger Crisp
adapted from Ann Vanderhoof, An Embarrassment of Mangoes

Ingredients:

Topping
½ cup AP flour
¾ cup flaked oats
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 heaping Tbsp frozen ginger, grated on a Microplane
1/3 cup cold butter, cubed

Filling:
6 cups cubed ripe mango (about 3-4 mangoes)
1½ Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
¼ cup packed brown sugar
1 Tbsp frozen ginger, grated on a Microplane
2 Tbsp flour

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Butter a 2 qt (8 inch) baking dish, or 8 ramekins.
Prepare the topping: mix together the flour, oats, sugar, nutmeg, and ginger. Add in the cubed cold butter and cut in until crumbly. Set aside.
Prepare the filling: Toss all the filling ingredients in a medium bowl until thoroughly combined. Spread into baking dish or ramekins, equally.
Sprinkle topping over fruit - at this point you can chill the crisp(s), covered, until you are ready to bake them.
Bake in preheated oven for about 40 minutes for the large one, about 25 for the minis, or until you have a nice brown crunchy top. Let cool a little before serving.
Goes great with vanilla ice cream.

Mmm, a bowl of sunshine.