Sindhri Mangoes are suitable for mango-rice? This is what we’d try to explore in this blog post. We will also see if Thailand Mango Rice differs from Pakistani Aam Chawal.
The Curiosity Behind Trying Mango Rice in Bangkok
When I visited Bangkok in 2005, I noticed that restaurants served mango rice. In Sindhi cuisine, we have a similar dish called “Anb Bhat,” which uses ripe Sindhri mangoes. However, other types of mangoes such as Langra, Dusehri, and Anwar Ratol are also acceptable. Usually, Sindhri mangoes are paired with plain Basmati rice.
I thought the mango rice in Bangkok would be similar to our Sindhi Anb Bhat or Aam Chawal. I ordered it anyway to try and see the difference. The waiter asked if I wanted it after lunch or as a snack. He surprised me, and I asked him to clarify. He explained that in Thailand, mango rice is a dessert and not a main course. I found it intriguing and chose to have a light lunch, followed by mango rice for dessert.
Exploring the Flavors of Thai Mango Rice
The dessert dish of mango rice didn’t resemble the Aam Chawal of Pakistan. It surprised me as I expected plain rice and cut mangoes. Instead, they served a clump of sticky rice, a few slices of mangoes, and a separate white liquid. I asked the waiter for an explanation about the dish and how to eat it. He told me that the mango pieces came from a famous Thai variety called Nam Doc Mai, the rice was made from Thai sticky rice, and the white liquid was coconut milk. He further explained that I should mix the coconut milk with the sweetened sticky rice and then eat it with the mangoes.
Khao Niao Mamuang or Thai Aam Chawal
I became curious and asked the waiter about the name of the dessert in Thailand. He informed me that the dessert is called ‘Khao Niao Mamuang,’ and that it’s made by flavoring sticky rice with creamy coconut milk and sweet Nam Doc Mai mangoes. While eating it, I thought about making a similar dessert in Pakistan using Sindhri mangoes. We can cook glutinous sweet rice and make our own Sindhri Mango Rice. The only challenge would be finding coconut milk, but it is easily available in supermarkets these days. Therefore, making Sindhri Mango Rice in Pakistan should not be a problem.
Anb Chashni or Aam Chashni
A local Sindhi cook in Mirpur Khas had an idea when I mentioned making Mithay Chawal or Chashni with Sindhri mangoes. He suggested adding coconut milk to Pakistani-style Sindhri mango rice. This fragrant Chashni or Mithay Chawal could even outdo Thai Khao Niao Mamuang. The Sindhi cook named it Anb Chashni or Aam Chashni.
From Royal Court to Street Food: The Journey of Thai Mango Rice
The Thai restaurant’s waiter informed me about the unique combination of flavors in Thai mango rice, which has made it a staple dish in Thai cuisine.
I forced the waiter to reveal more about the dish, and he explained that the history of Mango Rice dates back to the early 19th century. It was first introduced to the royal court of King Rama II and became popular among aristocrats. Over time, it became a part of Thai culture.
The waiter also informed me that Mango Rice has become a symbol of Thai culture, served during special occasions and festivals such as Songkran, the Thai New Year. The dessert represents the harmonious blend of flavors that is characteristic of Thai cuisine, with sweet mangoes, coconut milk, and sticky rice. Due to the popularity of this dessert, the famous Thai mango called Nam Doc Mai is now widely cultivated and used as an essential ingredient in making the dish.
Making the Classic Version of Mango Rice
The waiter explained that the traditional mango rice dessert is made from glutinous rice and coconut milk when I asked for the recipe. To make the classic version, rinse and soak the rice before cooking it with water. Then, heat the coconut milk, sugar, and salt, and add the mixture to the cooked rice. Serve the dish warm or at room temperature with freshly sliced mangoes on top. Nowadays, people also add other fruits such as Durian or use black sticky rice, which is a non-traditional version.
A Delicious Dessert Beloved Across Borders
Apart from Thailand, people in other countries such as Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, and the Philippines also commonly make and enjoy mango rice, apart from Thailand.
Although the basic ingredients for mango rice are generally the same across different countries, people may prepare it differently and have variations in their recipes. For example, some countries use cream instead of coconut milk or cook the rice differently. The sweetness and tartness of the mango can also vary depending on the region.
In addition, different countries have their own unique spin on the dish. The Philippines often serves mango rice with sweet coconut sauce, while Cambodia tops it with sesame seeds or crushed peanuts.
Many people consider mango rice a delicious and refreshing dessert, despite the differences in the way it is made in different countries.
Trying Out New Twists on Anb Chashni or Mithay Aam Chawal
I hope this helps you understand Thai mango rice and how it differs from Aam Chawal. Use this inspiration to create your own Mithay Chawal or Chashni recipe by adding coconut milk or Malai cream and pairing it with Sindhri mangoes.
If you try out your own version of mango rice, please share your recipe in the comments. Additionally, have you considered making a dessert in Kheer flavor and serving it with Sindhri mangoes? It could be a delicious combination worth exploring.
Share your thoughts on Mango Rice’s potential in Pakistani cuisine in the comments below!