Tag: Mango

Mango Festival – Hilton Hotel

A food festival is always going to be music to my ears, so when I was invited to come and try the mango festival at the Hilton Hotel, well, I was very excited indeed, number one because I love mangoes and number two because mangoes generally cost an arm and a leg here. Fruit themed buffets are really popular at the hotels here in Korea, and with strawberry season being over and Spring in the air, it is time for mangoes to take centre stage.

I would best describe the event as a mango themed afternoon tea. It costs 45,000 per person which includes access to the buffet for two hours, either 2:30-4:30, or 5:00 – 7:00, and all the mango tea and juice you can drink. The mango festival is located inside the lobby of the hotel rather than in one of their restaurants. Personally I quite enjoyed watching the hordes of guests going by as I’m quite partial a bit of people watching, whereas my friend didn’t appreciate it so much. I guess it depends on whether you like everyone looking at you or not, which I clearly do.

Once we had settled in and enjoyed a relaxing cup or two of tea it was time to check out the food. There was certainly quite a wide array of different sweet goods and a couple of savoury options. There are too many to mention but off the top of my head there were cronuts, mousse, tiramisu, tarts, meringue pie, macarons, vol a vents, cheesecakes, and ice cream. There were also of a couple of savoury options of meat balls and chicken legs which seemed like a bit of an afterthought.

There was plenty to choose from and we ended up trying most of the different items. To me the stand outs were the freshly fried Namsan Cronuts. There was a chef doing a demonstration of how to make them so these were fresh as can be. The cronuts were filled with mango creme patissiere and covered with mango frosting and a fresh strawberry. Being a child of the 80s I was also very happy to see a mango chicken vol a vent, I certainly ate more than my fair share.  I also really enjoyed the slices of fresh mango that were served at the chocolate fountain, I just wish they had more things to dip into it besides the fruit.

In regards to the rest of the offerings I couldn’t help feeling a little disappointed. While I thought they offered a good selection of different desserts, they didn’t really do it in terms of flavour for me. They all looked pretty enough, but I would have enjoyed them sweeter and with a more intense mango flavour. I assume that their target audience is Koreans who don’t tend to like their desserts quite so sweet, but for me it was a bit of a miss. I left the buffet before my time was up, which unfortunately kind of says it all.

The Millennium Hilton is located at 50, Sowol-ro, Jung-gu, Seoul. To get there take a train to Seoul Station (lines 1 & 4) and come out of exit 11. Follow the road around and take the third left, then walk straight. you will see the Millennium Hilton on the left hand side. For more information you can call them on 02-753-7788, or visit their website.

Coconut and Mango Cake

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Last week I made this cake in honor of my friend Sarah’s birthday. It is a coconut and mango cake  (aka the Princess Sarah) in tribute to a costume she once wore at a fancy dress themed birthday. I had been longing to make this for a while now. I made a coconut sponge and coconut cream cheese frosting and it’s filled with mango curd. It was nice change from my usually chocolate or coffee creations and will swiftly be added to my repertoire. I once again made the sponge in the rice cooker. I just find that they bake a lot more evenly than when I do them in the toaster oven as the heat is more evenly distributed.

Ingredients

Cake

2o0g of all purpose flour

200g of white sugar

200g of butter

3 eggs

4 tablespoons of coconut milk

1 teaspoon of baking powder

Mango curd

200g of frozen mango (you can use fresh, but it’s very pricey in SK)

85g of butter

4 egg yolks

100g of white sugar

1 tablespoon of corn starch

200ml of orange juice (you could also use mango juice)

1 lemon (juice and zest)

Frosting 

200g of cream cheese

1 stick of butter

400g of sugar powder

3 tablespoons of coconut cream (the thick white stuff at the top of the can of coconut milk)

Directions

Cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Then beat in the eggs. Stir in the coconut milk then mix well. In a separate bowl sift the flour and baking powder. Then fold into the coconut mixture. Take your rice cooker pan and line it with a piece of parchment paper. Then put the cake mixture inside. Press the cook setting and then continue to keep checking it every time it pops up. You may have to go though several cycles depending on the make and model of your rice cooker. However you will get there in the end so hang in there. You can tell when it’s done when the top is spongy to the touch. Remove the cake from the pan and leave to cool for a couple of hours.

To make the mango curd blend the mango and the juice until the mango is completely pureed. Put the pureed mango in a saucepan along with the sugar, cornflour,  lemon juice and zest and whisk together. Turn on to a medium heat. Continue stirring, until it starts to bubble. Turn off the heat and add the butter. Continue to stir until the butter has melted, then whisk in the egg yolks one at a time. When the mixture has completely combined, turn the heat back on to low and stir continuously until the mixture begins to thicken and bubble. Allow to cool completely before using in the cake. You can store any remnants in an air tight container and keep in your fridge for weeks.

To make the frosting, let the butter and cream cheese come to room temperature and mix together in a bowl. Stir in the sugar powder bit by bit  until none is left and you have a very thick butter-cream consistency. Add the thick coconut cream from the top of the can a spoonful at a time. Add as much as you need but don’t let the frosting get too runny, you can add more powder sugar if you need it.

To assemble the cake cut the sponge into two halves. Pipe a circle of frosting all the way around the edge then fill with the mango curd.

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Top with the second half of sponge then add another layer of frosting on the top and sides so it is completely coated. You can decorate the cake however you wish. I made my pretty frosting flowers on the top and decorated the sides in desiccated coconut. Once you have finished decorating pop the cake back in the fridge for at least an hour before serving. Voilà a fruity delight of a cake, perfect for any princess or birthday girl.

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Breakfast Cocktail

I think most of you know I enjoy a cheeky morning drink on a weekend morning. There’s nothing like a good old breakfast cocktail to get your weekend started. I am obviously a big fan of the Bloody Mary and also the Vodoffee, my own invention. However sometimes I like something a bit fruity. We all know that its important to get our five portions of fruit and veg a day,  raging alcoholism is no excuse for bad nutrition! So I came up with this fruity delight. You may also drink it at any other time of the day.

Ingredients

50ml Absolut Grapevine (you may substitute with any other fruit infused vodka)

100ml pineapple juice.

frozen raspberries

frozen mango

Directions

Put all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until all the fruit has been pulverized. Pour into a glass and serve. Voilà the perfect way to start your morning right. Warning not recommended on weekday mornings unless you are trying to get fired.

Fabulous Frozen Cocktail

I like to start my Saturday right, this usually includes a delicious breakfast cocktail. Since summer is almost over, I thought it was about high time I showed you my quick and easy recipe for a fabulous frozen cocktail. I’m very particular when it comes to cocktails so this is one of the easiest ways to make a quick frozen drink with little to no effort. It also contains at least one portion of healthy fruit goodness, making it a very suitable breakfast option for health conscious alcoholics such as myself . This little trick also come in to its own when your not near a bar but need a drink fast. They are also much cheaper.

Ingredients

1 Smoothie/Slushie (I personally favour Smoothie King’s Strawberry lemon twist or Dunkin Donuts Orange mango Coolata)

50ml of your preferred liquor (vodka/rum/tequila all work well)

Directions

Simply go to your nearest smoothie selling outlet (all the big coffee chains sell them). Purchase one drink in your favourite flavour, I recommend ones made from juice rather than those containing milk or yoghurt. Add the alcohol and stir. Voilà a fabulous frozen cocktail.

Tempura King Prawns with Mango Mayo

Being a larger lady I’m rather fond of anything deep-fried in batter. I’m not really very keen of fish but you can’t beat a good prawn. For many years I was rather wary of deep-frying. I don’t know why exactly, maybe it was just the thought of using so much oil. It’s not even that wasteful if you clean your oil by straining it through a piece of kitchen towel each time you use it. You can keep your oil for sometime if you do this. Sadly I did not take my own advice and clean my oil thoroughly, which is why my prawns have little black dots on them, but que sera sera. I generally use soy bean oil for my deep-frying as it has a high smoke point and its cheap and plentiful in Korea.

Ingredients

Tempura

15 – 30 King prawns with the tails on (get the biggest ones you can find. I usually buy the bags of frozen ones from Costco)

250g of Ottogi frying mix (they sell it everywhere, it has a picture of a tempura prawn on the front)

300-400 ml of ice cold water (use fizzy if you have it)

500ml soy bean oil

Mango Mayo

200 ml of mayonnaise (any brand is fine, make your own if you have time)

3 tablespoons of sweet chili sauce

75gof frozen mango (use fresh if you have it ,but frozen is much cheaper here in Korea)

Directions

Heat the oil in a wok or saucepan until it reaches 180 degrees. If you don’t have a thermometer, drop a little bit of the batter into the pan, if it sinks to the bottom it’s not hot enough. If it sizzles at the top then its fine. Dip you prawns into the batter then put them into the hot oil being carefull not to splash yourself. Don’t cook too many at once as it will lower the temperature of the oil, about three is fine. Give them a minute or so then flip them over. When the batter is a light golden brown they are done. Place them on a few sheets of kitchen roll to remove excess oil while you are cooking the rest.

To make the mayonnaise. Chop the mango into very small pieces then put them into a bowl. Add the mayonnaise and sweet chilli sauce and mix together. Voilà a delicious and easy starter to impress all your friends.