Mango Yoghurt Mousse

A simple mango mousse, with no added sugar or cream but spiced with cardamom, will be enjoyed by most diners and is suitable for many diets including Dairy Free, Egg Free, Low Calorie Vegetarian and Vegan.

I think the best way to eat mango is fresh off the tree and I hope to be doing this in a few years from our own garden. We already have one small tree but its growth has been stunted by the elephants passing through and snacking a couple of years ago. I am nurturing it to speed its growth; so I am hoping to have an abundance of fruit in just a few years…elephants permitting! (Plants grow so so fast here with heat, water and good soil.)

Mangos are one of nature’s sweetest fruits and I wanted my recipe to be healthy with no added sugar and minimal fat. I replaced the cream or coconut cream that many recipes use with a locally-made yoghurt, from Eastwood Farm, that is low-fat and just slightly tart (as yoghurt should be naturally). It contrasts well with the fruit’s natural sugar.

Yoghurts vary widely, in flavour and richness, depending on the culture used. Choose your favourite adding, lime juice or honey (not Vegan diet) or syrup for the flavour you want.

To retain a little texture in the mousse the fruit is mashed, ensuring there are no ‘stringy bits’ remaining. For a creamy texture, purée the fruit.

The cardamom adds depth of flavour to this simple recipe. It is preferable to use whole pods for a fresh and stronger flavour. Below is a guide for preparing whole pods for this dish.

To create a firm mousse I have used agar-agar. It is selected for Vegan diets and is the preferable choice in hot climates because it does not melt in the heat. Substituting gelatine, in a similar quantity, provides a similar result.

Diets for which Mango Yoghurt Mousse is suitable:

Diabetic, Dairy Free, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Low Calorie, Low Fat, Nut Free, Paleo, Vegetarian and Vegan.


Preparation: 10 mins | Cook: 5 mins | Serves: 2-3
1 large mango
250 ml (1 cup) plain yoghurt*
1 tsp ground cardamom (20 pods)**
125 ml (1/2 cup) water
1 tbsp agar-agar***


PEEL the mango and remove all the flesh from the stone.
MASH or purée the mango flesh, ensuring there are no ‘stringy’ bits remaining.
ADD yoghurt and ground cardamom. (If using pods: heat them in a hot, dry frying pan for 3-5 minutes; use a rolling pin or pestle and mortar to break the pods open; remove cardamom seeds and grind them.)
BOIL the water.
SPRINKLE the agar-agar on top of the water and lower the heat until the agar-agar dissolves, 3-5 minutes.
COOL the agar-agar slightly and stir it into the mango mix.
SPOON the mix into two or three small dishes or glasses.
CHILL for a minimum of 2 hours when it will be firm.
SERVE in the dish or glass or turn it onto a plate and garnish (see below).


— As a dessert garnished with a sprig of mint, walnut/pecan nut (not Nut Free), shredded coconut, diced mango, a slice of lime or a biscuit.


* Dairy Free and Vegan diets, use soya yoghurt. Coconut yoghurt, not widely available, is also suitable for these, and for Paleo diet.
** If making this mousse a day in advance, reduce the quantity of cardamom to 1/2 tsp. The flavour develops with time and can become overpowering.
*** Substitute gelatine, in similar quantity — not for Vegan diet.


— Add a layer of this mousse between vanilla or chocolate sponge as a cream alternative.

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