Sour mango cocktail


Most of the time I don’t drink alcohol, and you know, it gets tricky to find things to drink in the evening without turning to fruit/vegetable juices, teas or sugary drinks. So when my friend Roopa Gulati told me this was her favourite drink when sour mangoes were available, I bagged a few underipe mangoes at the market and made a batch for the weekend.

Slightly sour and very refreshing, with the cumin seeds adding a spicy savoury punch to the drink. I dried a small bunch of mint in the oven for about an hour at 100C, and then crumbled some of the crisp leaves into the drink to give it a curious iced-tea flavour.

3 or 4 small unripe mangoes
1 or 2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp crush dried mint
caster sugar

Cover the mangoes with water and simmer for about an hour until totally soft, topping up the water every so often. Leave to cool in the water then remove the seed from the centre – make sure to scrape any remaining mango pulp from it – then place the pulp and the cooking water in a blender and mix until smooth. Pour this through a sieve, push through to remove any skin (discard any that the sieve catches) and make up the strained pulp to about 1 litre with cold water.

Toast the cumin seeds in a dry pan until they begin to smoke then add these to the mango liquid together with the crushed dry mint. Stir everything together with one or two tsp sugar and pour into a glass filled with ice cubes.

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