Hanging her head down she was sitting there stirring her bowl of breakfast cereal. Gently, pushing the cheerios down in the milk and then watching them bounce back up. No word, just silence. Very unlike the butterfly I know. “Maa” then she breaks the silence and goes, “remember the time when you explained to me what a mixed feeling is? Well, I think I am having one of those today. I’m feeling excited but at the same time nervous about tomorrow.” I assured its normal and everyone feels the same. Although she did not look convinced, when the topic of what she should be wearing came up instead, a wave of brightness kissed her face and she was back to her jumping and bouncing self. Although that did not do anything to the knot in my own stomach. New neighborhood, new school and absolutely no familiar faces. I was nervous for her too. Probably much more than she was.
Then the day came. We walked into the school with a slightly bigger knot in our stomachs. Walked into a sea of kids, teachers and parents, everyone chatting away. Looked like everyone knew everyone. Except for us. Then I felt a little tug on my hand, I bend over and she whispers in my ear, “Maa, this place looks like a big birthday party only this party is never going to end. I love this!” And went back to gazing around with her bright grinning eyes. Suddenly I did not have that knot in the stomach anymore, only it moved up to the throat. From there she went non stop about the fancy art on the class door, in her favorite rainbow colors, new box of art supplies and her name written beautifully on her table. Didn’t even turn back to say good bye when we slipped out of the room. Some important discussion going on with a new found friend it seems. This time we were the ones leaving with a mixed feeling, the husband and I. I do not want to insert the same old cliched, “they grow up so fast”. But, arrgh, they do!
I have been thinking a lot about this mango pie I had at a friend’s sometime back. Inspired by those flavors I made this pudding after we got back from her school. Probably to win her back with a delicious after school snack? Or maybe just to repair by wounded heart! Whatever be the reason, this pudding definitely did the job. Two of her favorite things, mangoes and raspberries, thrown together and out came this very simple, easy and less than 5 ingredient delight.
Thought this recipe might also be a great way to celebrate this new and improved face of Indian Simmer. Abhishek has worked really hard, for weeks if not months bringing it to shape. I am absolutely in love with it. Let me know how you like it.
Ingredients: serves 6-8
Mango pulp- 2 cups
Cream cheese (softened)- 1 cup
Water- 1/2 cup
Agar Agar (or gelatin)- 1 tablespoon
1 cup fresh berries
In a small saucepan bring water to a boil. Turn heat off. Add agar agar. Stir vigorously until it dissolves completely. Set aside to cool to a room temperature.
In a big mixing bowl, using an electric mixer whisk the cream cheese on medium high speed, until light, 3-5 minutes.
Add mango pulp and room temperature agar agar. Whisk until well incorporated.
Pour into serving bowls. Put it in the refrigerator until chilled and set, at least 3-4 hours.
Top with some berries (I used raspberries). Serve chilled.