Saturday, 16 January 2021

Salted caramel mango and Coconut Ice Cream Crumble Bars

Mangoes and ice cream are delicious together, and because I am still in holiday mode I am using plain bought vanilla ice cream for this recipe. However you can use your own homemade ice cream if you feel like making it and well done if you do.There's still some mango madness here in North Queensland with local mangoes ready for the picking. What we cook and feel like eating is often dependent on the weather at the time, whether it is hot and humid like it is here in Summer, or very cold, as our Northern Hemisphere neighbours are experiencing. 

At the moment here in tropical Queensland, fresh salads and fruits are a mainstay and a colorful salad is the preferred option for a meal. Hot desserts can be too heavy to eat in our climate right now unless dining out in an air conditioned restaurant whereas in the cooler climates, I know you are all enjoying delicious warming foods like sticky date puddings. However one exception to all of the rules is ice cream. Ice cream is enjoyed everywhere, whether its cold, hot, temperate or in between, the main difference being that in our climate we need to eat it faster before it melts. No problem there. When I saw this recipe in a Coles supermarket catalogue before Christmas I wanted to make it straight away. However as we travelled to Cairns for Christmas that didn't happen. Local mangoes are ripening very late here, possibly due to the dry conditions last year, and paying $2.50 for a supermarket mango isn't an option for me when we can buy them for $10.00 a bucket at the markets or pick them from a friends tree, which is what we have just done.

This photo is of mangoes that we have just picked straight off the tree. The mango tree is located on a cattle property near where we live and is a very large tree. As you can see they have some imperfections which you don't see on mangoes purchased at a supermarket and are all different sizes. This is the reality of mangoes growing on large trees on privately owned property. They often look like this before they are washed and cleaned for the market.Time will tell when they ripen if they all make good eating. So far they are delicious. The fruit is ready to pick when the skin changes from green to yellow, or red or pink depending on the variety of mango. Most of the mangoes growing in our area are Bowen mangoes, which have a beautiful red blush on their skin. We try to pick them when they are still hard, as otherwise the flying foxes will raid the tree and eat them overnight.  One of the tricks to hasten ripening is to wrap them individually in newspaper and then they will often ripen indoors on the windowsill or in a tray or bucket in a week.

Mangoes wrapped in newspaper ready for ripening

The mango trees are often very large, and it's important to be well prepared before picking mangoes as they can also release a lot of sap from the stem when they fall from the tree. This sap can burn our skins if we aren't careful, so long sleeves and gloves need to be worn for protection. Its also snake season so shoes are essential,  as often the trees are in the paddocks on large properties, not that we have seen any snakes, but they are around. The most essential piece of equipment is the mango picker, which are often homemade and comprise a hook at one end,  which hooks over the top of the mango. This hook is attached to a large pole like a broom handle to reach the top of the trees, and there is also often a long sock attached so that the mangoes have a soft landing into the sock. A good pull by the hook and the mango will come away from the stem. However often they land on the ground without any damage. Picking mangoes is a labour of love, and this annual event is one we have grown up doing over the years. Mr. HRK is taller than me and is very good at it. Commercial mango farms have a much more streamlined procedure for picking as you would expect.

Let's cook:
Serves 16.  Preparation 20 minutes (+ cooling & 4 1/2 hours freezing time.)
Cooking 30 minutes.


3/4 cup (165 g) brown sugar

2 cups (300 g) plain flour

1 cup (75 g) shredded coconut

2/3 cup (60 g) rolled oats

250 g unsalted butter, melted

1/2 cup (80 g) finely chopped dried mango

50 g unsalted butter, extra

2 large mangoes, stoned peeled, and coarsely chopped

1/2 cup (110 g) brown sugar, extra

1 tsp vanilla

1tsp sea salt flakes

2 Litre tub vanilla ice cream, softened

270 ml can coconut cream


1. Crumble:

Preheat oven to 180 deg. C. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Place the sugar, flour, coconut and oats in a bowl and stir to combine. 

Add the melted butter to the bowl and use a round-bladed knife to stir until just combined. 

Spoon this mixture onto a lined biscuit oven tray. 

Bake, stirring occasionally, for 30 mins or until all of the mixture has cooked.

Stir in the chopped dried mango. Cool.

2. Caramel salted mango

Melt the extra butter (50 g) in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add the fresh mango, extra sugar (1/2 cup) and vanilla. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes until the mixture thickens and  becomes caramelised. Sprinkle with the salt and place on a tray to cool.


Grease a 20 cm (base measurement) square cake pan. Line the base and sides with baking paper, allowing sides to overhang. Separate half  the baked oat mixture and spread over the base of the lined cake pan. Place the pan in the freezer for 30 mins to chill.


Ice cream

Next combine the softened ice cream and the coconut cream in a bowl. Add the mango mixture and gently swirl to marble through the ice cream.


Spoon the ice cream mixture over the oat mixture in the pan. Smooth the surface. Sprinkle with the remaining oat mixture, pressing down gently. 


Place in the freezer for 4 hours or until firm. When ready to eat, cut into pieces and serve straight away.

There is no need to serve anything else with this however a couple of fresh or frozen mango  pieces on the side would be delicious.

The Life of Locky

 Dressed in a Queensland Scouts bandana which belonged to my Mum

Warm wishes,

Pauline x


  1. Locky looks so handsome! Lucky you having the local grown and freshly picked mangoes. The streusel bars sound and look really inviting and yummy.

  2. Thanks Angie,yes it is nice to have the local and fresh mangoes to eat and cook with.

  3. I have been trying to leave a comment on your blog but when I click on 'Post a comment' nothing happens for some reason. I love your recipe as I love mangoes. The cheapest I have found are three for $5 at the market. A bit cheaper than the supermarkets.

    1. Pauline, I was tryine to comment on my Android phone before so will see if it works here when using my iPad. Like my blog yours is taking time for the 'Reply' button to turn red. I timed my blog once and it took over two minutes for the sidebar to download.

    2. Thanks for persisting to comment Chel. Yes it is all very slow sometimes.I am finding it is much faster now that I am using Microsoft Edge as my browser. Take care, Pauline

  4. ah adorable Locky... your bars look amazing even tho we aren't mango fans. i guess you could try lots of other fruits - peaches etc... Funny how Bowen mangoes are back to being called kensington pride. the circle of life - tee hee. Hubby's great aunt used to pick mangoes from her tree with a long pole, when she was in her 90s! newspaper? i haven't seen any for a long time. happy new year! x

    1. Thanks Sherry, I rarely buy a newspaper now but I made a special effort and bought one so I could wrap up these mangoes. We don't have a local regional paper anymore, apparently Mackay has a page in the Courier Mail which I don't buy. I can't eat many of them now to be honest but I do love a good mango, I think the Kensington Pride resurgence came as a marketing ploy for the Northern Territory as their mangoes are always the first to hit the market. Our local Bowens just up the road, are still called Bowens.happy new year!

  5. So nice that you can pick your own mangoes! I'm envious. :-) Anyway, this looks like a terrific recipe -- loads of flavor. Never had salted caramel mango -- such a neat idea. Thanks!

    1. It is a very tasty ice cream, thanks KR. Just a few steps, but essentially it is very simple to make.

  6. I would much rather pick my own, or buy local, than pay the exorbitant prices the supermarkets ask. In saying that though, we can get them for about 80 Aus Cents here :)

    1. Thanks Tandy, 80 cents is a good price. I wonder what variety grows in South Africa.

  7. It looks delightful and since I'm a huge fan of mang! Your dog is so cute :)

    1. Thanks so much Food Trotter, I'm making the most of having access to fresh mango at the moment, its a short season.


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