Kid-friendly East Indian Fruit Cakes + Cardamom Fruity Frosting + Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi" Recipe - Sticky Fingers Cooking
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Family Meal Plan: Mouth-Watering East Indian Fruit Cakes + Cardamom Fruity Frosting + Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi”

Family Meal Plan: East Indian Fruit Cakes + Cardamom Fruity Frosting + Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi"

Mouth-Watering East Indian Fruit Cakes + Cardamom Fruity Frosting + Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi”

by Erin Fletter
Photo by MSPhotographic/Shutterstock.com
prep time
40 minutes
cook time
20 minutes
makes
4-6 servings

Fun Food Story

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Mouth-Watering East Indian Fruit Cakes

Namaste! It feels like the perfect time to create some sweet and fruity recipes with our young chefs, don’t you think? Mangoes are so yummy on their own, and just to show how much we love them and how versatile they are, we’re using them in all three of our recipes! We love how these mini East Indian Fruit Cakes bake to a caramel color, that there’s a sneaky wild card ingredient (grated golden beet!), and that a bright sunshine-hued “fruity frosting” tops them off. Cardamom will be a new spice for many of your kid chefs—it is so prevalent in Indian cuisine and makes the frosting extra fun and tasty! Ask your kids if they think mangoes need to be peeled before being eaten! Well, for this recipe they do, but here’s a fun fact to share with them: Kids in India squeeze ripe mangoes and bite straight through the peel without cutting them open. So mangoes don’t need to be peeled before being eaten, and they also don’t need to be ripe! Green, unripe mangoes are used in savory recipes and salads. But ripe mangoes, like these, make the best desserts. So enjoy some sweetness and sunshine this week!

Namaste! It feels like the perfect time to create some sweet and fruity recipes with our young chefs, don’t you think? Mangoes are so yummy on their own, and just to show how much we love them and how versatile they are, we’re using them in all three of our recipes! We love how these mini East Indian Fruit Cakes bake to a caramel color, that there’s a sneaky wild card ingredient (grated golden beet!), and that a bright sunshine-hued “fruity frosting” tops them off. Cardamom will be a new spice for many of your kid chefs—it is so prevalent in Indian cuisine and makes the frosting extra fun and tasty! Ask your kids if they think mangoes need to be peeled before being eaten! Well, for this recipe they do, but here’s a fun fact to share with them: Kids in India squeeze ripe mangoes and bite straight through the peel without cutting them open. So mangoes don’t need to be peeled before being eaten, and they also don’t need to be ripe! Green, unripe mangoes are used in savory recipes and salads. But ripe mangoes, like these, make the best desserts. So enjoy some sweetness and sunshine this week!

Happy & Healthy Cooking,

Chef Erin, Food-Geek-in-Chief
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Shopping List

  • Fresh:
  • 3 to 4 small fresh ripe mangoes (or 1 1/2 to 2 C frozen, thawed mango chunks) **(for MANGO ALLERGY sub pineapple chunks)**
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 small golden beet (or small red beet or small carrot)
  • Pantry:
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 1 1/2 C all-purpose flour **(for GLUTEN ALLERGY sub gluten-free flour + 2 T or more butter or oil)**
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 heaping tsp powdered sugar
  • 3 T honey
  • 2 pinches ground cardamom (or 1/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice)
  • Dairy:
  • 1/4 C grated butter + extra for greasing **(for DAIRY ALLERGY sub olive or grapeseed oil)**
  • 1 1/2 C plain yogurt **(for DAIRY ALLERGY sub dairy-free/nut-free plain yogurt or coconut milk/cream)**
  • Have on hand:
  • 1/4 C ice
  • 1/4 C cold water

Fun-Da-Mentals Kitchen Skills

  • knife skills :

    Bear Claw (growl), Pinch, Plank, and Bridge (look out for trolls)

  • mash :

    to reduce food, like potatoes or bananas, to a soft, pulpy state by beating or pressure.

  • measure :

    to calculate the specific amount of an ingredient required using a measuring tool (like measuring cups or spoons).

  • mix :

    to thoroughly combine two or more ingredients until uniform in texture.

  • purée :

    to blend, grind, or mash food until it is thick, smooth, and closer to a liquid.

  • slice :

    to cut into thin pieces using a sawing motion with your knife.

  • wet vs dry :

    to mix wet and dry ingredients separately before combining them: dry ingredients are flours, leavening agents, salt, and spices; wet ingredients are those that dissolve or can be dissolved (sugar, eggs, butter, oils, honey, vanilla, milk, and juices).

Equipment Checklist

  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • Blender (or pitcher + immersion blender)
  • Measuring spoons
  • Liquid measuring cup
  • Oven
  • Muffin pan
  • Grater
  • Mixing bowls
  • Dry measuring cups
  • Toothpicks
  • Small mixing bowl
  • Whisk or wooden spoon
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Ingredients

Mouth-Watering East Indian Fruit Cakes

  • 1/2 fresh ripe mango (or 1/4 C frozen, thawed mango chunks) **(for MANGO ALLERGY sub pineapple chunks)**
  • 1 golden yellow beet, peeled
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/4 C melted butter + extra for greasing **(for DAIRY ALLERGY sub olive or grapeseed oil)**
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 1/2 C plain yogurt **(for DAIRY ALLERGY sub dairy-free/nut-free plain yogurt or coconut milk/cream)**
  • 1 1/2 C all-purpose flour **(for GLUTEN ALLERGY sub gluten-free flour + 2 T or more butter or oil)**
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Cardamom Fruity Frosting

  • 1/2 to 1 fresh ripe mango (or 1/4 to 1/2 C frozen, thawed mango chunks) **(for MANGO ALLERGY sub pineapple chunks)**
  • 2 heaping tsp powdered sugar
  • 2 pinches ground cardamom

Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi”

  • 2 fresh ripe mangoes (or 1 C frozen mango chunks) **(for MANGO ALLERGY sub pineapple chunks)**
  • 3 T honey
  • 2 C plain yogurt **(for DAIRY ALLERGY sub dairy-free/nut-free plain yogurt or coconut milk/cream)**
  • 1/4 C ice
  • 1/4 C cold water

Food Allergen Substitutions

Mouth-Watering East Indian Fruit Cakes

  • Mango: Substitute pineapple chunks for mango.
  • Dairy: Substitute dairy-free/nut-free yogurt or coconut milk/cream for plain yogurt.
  • Gluten/Wheat: Substitute gluten-free flour for all-purpose flour.

Cardamom Fruity Frosting

  • Mango: Substitute pineapple chunks for mango in Frosting.

Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi”

  • Mango: Substitute pineapple chunks for mango in Lassi.
  • Dairy: Substitute dairy-free/nut-free yogurt or coconut milk/cream for plain yogurt in Lassi.

Instructions

Mouth-Watering East Indian Fruit Cakes

1.
preheat + slice + purée + grate

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a muffin pan with butter. Adults, slice 2 mangoes on both sides of the center pit, then score the flesh, pop out the chunks of mango, and slice them away from the skin. (There are online videos that show how to do this.). Purée mango chunks in a blender until very smooth. Measure 1/4 cup of the purée for the cakes, saving the rest for the Cardamom Fruity Frosting. Next, grate 1 peeled golden beet.

2.
peel + mash + measure + combine

Peel 1 ripe banana and mash well. Then measure and combine mashed banana with mango purée, grated beet, 1/4 cup butter, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/2 cup yogurt in a mixing bowl. Into a separate mixing bowl, measure and combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Whisk both dry and wet ingredients well, then add the dry to the wet and combine until all the flour disappears!

3.
divide + bake + cool + frost

Divide cake batter into the muffin pan. Bake until cakes are very golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool before topping with Mango Cardamom Fruity Frosting!

Cardamom Fruity Frosting

1.
measure + combine + mix + frost

Measure and combine 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the mango purée, 2 heaping teaspoons powdered sugar, and 2 pinches cardamom. Mix! Use this to frost the cooled Fruit Cakes!

Fruity Indian Yogurt “Lassi”

1.
slice + measure

Slice 2 mangoes on both sides of the center pit, then score the flesh, pop out the chunks of mango, and slice them away from the skin (a job for adults!). Add mango to a blender. Measure and add 3 tablespoons honey, 2 cups yogurt, 1/4 cup ice, and 1/4 cup cold water to the blender.

2.
purée + pour

Purée until the lassi is very smooth! Add more water bit by bit until the lassi is thin enough to pour. Divide into cups and enjoy!

Surprise Ingredient: Mango!

back to recipe
Photo by Hakase_420/Shutterstock.com

Hi!  I’m Mango!

"Namaste! I'm a mango and a native of India. Did you know that the Indian people revere me! I'm a symbol of love and prosperity and have even had poems written about me! Usually, you don't expect a fruit to be a staple, but in India, they add me to every type of dish, including drinks, like lassi. So if someone shares a mango with you, not only do they want you to enjoy a delicious fruit, they also want to be your friend!"

History

  • Mangoes were cultivated in India over 5,000 years ago! They are the national fruit of India, Pakistan, and the Philippines, and the mango tree is the national tree of Bangladesh.
  • Mangoes have been grown in South Asia for thousands of years and reached Southeast Asia between the 5th and 4th centuries BCE. They were introduced to the world by Buddhist monks in the 5th Century BCE!
  • Mango seeds made their way to other parts of the world with people from Asia around 300 or 400 CE.
  • Almost half of the world's mangoes are cultivated in India, and China is the second-highest producer.
  • Mangoes sold in the United States mostly come from Mexico and other Central and South American countries.
  • There are over 500 hundred varieties of mangoes, and possibly 1,000! The majority of mango species exist as wild mangoes.
  • In India, mangoes are considered sacred, and giving a basket of mangoes is a gesture of friendship.

Anatomy & Etymology 

  • A mango tree can grow taller than 100 feet! Plus, it can give fruit for up to 50 years!
  • The leaves of a mango tree start out pink, but when it matures, the leaves reach a deep, evergreen color.
  • Mango fruit can take three to five months to grow and ripen, usually during summer. However, newer commercial growing methods now allow plants to flower and produce fruit year-round.
  • The mango is an oblong stone fruit with thick, fibrous skin and juicy, soft flesh. Its shape inspired the paisley print!
  • The word "mango" came from the Portuguese, "manga," from the Malay "mangga," and possibly from the Tamil "mankani" (MAN-kanee).

How to Pick, Buy, & Eat

  • You can begin harvesting mango fruit when it has been about three to four months after the plant has stopped flowering. When the fruit starts growing, they will be dark green. The skin color will change as they ripen and begin to soften. If you see that mangoes have started to fall on the ground, it's time, and possibly past time, to start picking them.
  • Mangoes taste best when they get closer to ripeness on the tree, although they are often picked when green and then ripen in the store or on the kitchen counter.
  • When choosing a mango, color is less important than feel. Gently squeeze the mango, and if it gives a little, it is ready to use. Also, if there is a fruity scent at a stem end, it's most likely ripe. 
  • Mangoes are usually eaten when ripe; however, unripe, green mangoes are also beloved and eaten widely in chutneys, pickles, side dishes, and even raw with salt and chili powder.
  • Mangoes have natural tenderizing properties, making them a perfect ingredient for marinades. 
  • Mangoes are super versatile! Try them in smoothies, salads, salsas, chutneys, cheesecake, or just plain as a tasty and refreshing snack. There's even such a thing as Mango Eggnog!

Nutrition

  • Vitamin C! Mango boasts an impressive amount of vitamin C. Just one cup of raw mango contains 100 percent of our daily value! Vitamin C protects the smallest living things in the body—our cells—from harmful chemicals. It also strengthens our immune system to help keep us from getting sick and aids in our healing when we are injured or come down with a cold. 
  • Folate! Mango contains 20 percent of the daily value of folate our bodies need to divide cells in half. This process helps you to grow!
  • The yellow-orange pigment of a ripe mango is due to its beta-carotene content. Beta-carotene acts as an antioxidant in the body to rid extra free radicals and protect cells from oxidative stress. Beta-carotene turns into vitamin A, which protects the eyes!

How to Peel a Mango

  • Mangoes are usually peeled before eating, but not always! They also have a thin, flat, oblong-shaped pit that can be challenging to remove the first time you try. The pit is the hard seed inside the mango that runs directly below the stem.
  • To cut around the pit, find the stem of the mango, move the knife to one side of it, and slice down the mango lengthwise. Then, do the same thing on the other side of the stem.
  • Next, to cut out the delicious mango flesh, hold one side of the mango in the palm of your hand, skin-side down. Using a sharp knife, score the flesh in one direction, then the opposite direction. Bend the mango so that the cubes you've scored "pop" up. Use your knife to carefully slice off each of these cubes close to the mango peel.
  • Finally, you can either pop the cubes into your mouth, or add them to a sweet or savory dish!

 

History of Fruit Cake!

Photo by Joerg Beuge/Shutterstock.com
  • Fruit cake has been around since ancient Egyptian and Roman times. Fruit cake was put in the tombs of the deceased in Egypt. The oldest fruit cake is a 4,176-year-old cake found in an Egyptian tomb! In the Roman empire, soldiers would carry bars of fruit cake into battle (the power bar of the day)! 
  • When sugar arrived in Europe, recipes changed, and eventually, fruit cake spread to Britain and the American colonies. A Michigan family claims a family fruit cake made in 1878 has been passed down to the following generations. That's over 140 years old! 
  • Fruit cake is a traditional dessert in many countries, often served for weddings and holidays. It usually consists of dried or candied fruit, nuts, and spices and is sometimes soaked in distilled liquor. Some fruit cakes, however, include fresh fruit, like apples, cherries, mangoes, pineapple, or plums.

Let's Learn About India!

Photo by Charu Chaturvedi on Unsplash
  • India is a country in South Asia and is officially called the Republic of India. It is the second-most populous country in the world and has the largest population of any democratic nation. 
  • Hindi and English are official languages, and there are 447 native languages spoken in India.
  • India's government includes a president, prime minister, and parliament. Twenty-eight states and eight union territories make up India's federal union. 
  • India's currency is the Indian "rupee." It is illegal for foreigners to take rupees out of India.
  • Emperor Shah Jahan commissioned the Taj Mahal's construction in 1632 for his wife, Mumtaz Mahal.
  • The anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi's birthday is celebrated on October 2. He is considered India's "Father of the Nation" and led the Indian people to independence from 89 years of British rule in 1947. Gandhi's peaceful protest movement inspired many people in other countries.
  • India's national symbols are the lotus flower, the Bengal tiger, and the peacock.
  • Some of the world's highest mountains are in India, including Kanchenjunga, the third tallest at 28,169 feet. 
  • The Bay of Bengal is a huge bay bordering the southeastern part of India and is home to the world's largest mangrove forest. Here, tigers swim in the same waters as dolphins, sea turtles, sharks, and saltwater crocodiles. 
  • The snow leopard, the Indian rhinoceros, the Bengal tiger, and the Asian elephant are all animals of India. Globally, it is the only country that has both lions and tigers.
  • The most popular sport in India is cricket!
  • It is hot in India, so people there often wear loose clothes. Traditional clothing differs by area in India. Women may wear saris, long pieces of colorful cotton or silk draped over and around the body like a dress. Men may wear a dhoti, made of material wrapped around the hips and pulled through the legs, somewhat resembling loose pants, although they aren't seen in cities much anymore. Photos of Gandhi show him wearing dhotis.
  • Seventy percent of the world's spices come from India.
  • Staple foods in India include lentils, rice, bread, and spices. People living on the coast eat more fish and seafood. In other regions, they eat chicken, beef, and game meats. Many people throughout India are vegetarians. Common fruits and vegetables are mangoes, apples, oranges, pineapples, bananas, onions, okra, potatoes, spinach, and carrots.  
  • Curries are popular dishes in India and are made with a variety of vegetables, fish, meat, and fruits, and spices. 
  • When people greet each other in India, as a sign of respect, they bow, placing their hands together before their chest or face, and say "Namaste," which translates to "I bow to the divine in you."

What's It Like to Be a Kid in India?

  • Indian parents are encouraged to start their kids in preschool at 2½ to 3 years old. School is usually taught in a particular state's language, which could be Hindi, English, or another language. 
  • Kids often have their grandparents living with them in the family household.
  • Along with cricket, tennis, badminton, and chess, kids may play traditional Indian games like kabaddi or kho-kho, both played by teams, or kancha, a marble game played individually or with others.
  • Kids enjoy the Holi festival, which is a religious celebration that also heralds the arrival of spring. Celebrated in various ways throughout the country, most versions include the joyous spraying and throwing of colorful powders by festival participants at one another. 

Lettuce Joke Around

Did you hear about the guy who stopped eating vegetables? 

His heart missed a Beet.

THYME for a Laugh

What do you call an island populated entirely by cupcakes?

Desserted!

THYME for a Laugh

Why couldn’t the teddy bear finish his cupcake?

Because he was stuffed!

THYME for a Laugh

What is the only food that you are allowed to play with? 

Yo-Yo Gurt!

That's Berry Funny

What is red, yellow, and green and goes up and down? 

A Mango in an elevator!

THYME for a Laugh

How do you make a mango shake? 

Take it to a scary movie!

Lettuce Joke Around

What would you call two banana skins? 

A pair of slippers.

THYME for a Laugh

What’s the difference between a baseball cupcake and a baseball muffin?

The batter!

THYME for a Laugh

Why are bananas never lonely? 

Because they hang around in bunches!

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