Yes, it is possible to make a great dessert without an oven and even if you’re not great at baking. This mango icebox cake was assembled with store-bought broas (lady finger cookies), whipped cream, cream cheese, powdered sugar and slices of fresh sweet mango. Adding bits of chocolate is entirely optional but chocolate does add a beautiful contrast to the sweetness of the mango.
If you have strong arms, you can make this mango icebox cake entirely by hand. But if you have an electric mixer anyway, there’s no reason why you can’t use it to whip the cream. Alex used the stand mixer for whipping the cream and beating the cream cheese. Use whipping cream with a high butterfat content. It doesn’t matter what brand. Use good quality cream cheese (Magnolia cream cheese is the WORST in the local market).
As for the broas, is it possible to use some other kind of cookie? It is possible. But what the result will be, I am not able to say because I can only vouch for something that we have tried and tested. Some cookies are so hard and dense, and I doubt if that kind will be good for making this mango icebox cake.
There is, of course, the option to crush hard cookies. You may do that. But I can assure you that when you slice the icebox cake, the crushed cookies will crumble and you won’t get neat slices. You have the option of binding the crumbs with melted butter but that’s really adding more ingredients and work to an otherwise simple and easy dessert.
And the fruit? What other fruit will be good? Kiwi fruit should be good. Sliced strawberries. Fresh blueberries. What won’t work are fruits that discolor fast. Tossing them in lemon juice might arrest the discoloration process but will the added acidity taste good with the cream? I don’t know. If you want to experiment, you can try and find out. Who knows? You might come up with a masterpiece.
What about the mold? Will an ordinary cake pan work? Sure! Just line it with cling film so that, after chilling, you can just pull out the icebox cake, peel off the cling film, slice and serve.
Alex's Mango Icebox Cake
- 1 cup whipping cream well chilled
- 125 grams cream cheese at room temperature
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar sifted (sift before measuring)
- 12 to 15 broas (lady finger cookies)
- 1 fresh ripe mango cut into thin slices
- chopped or shaved dark chocolate optional
Using a wire whisk or an electric mixer, whip the cream to stiff peaks.
In another bowl, beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the powdered sugar little by little and continue beating until fully incorporated.
Add about a cup of whipped cream to the cream cheese. Fold. Add the rest of the cream and fold.
Take a pan that is at least three inches high. Cut a piece of cling film large enough to line the bottom and sides of the pan, with enough overhang to cover the top of the cake after it has been assembled. Smoothen the cling film to remove air pockets and creases.
Line the bottom of the pan with broas. Spread a quarter of the cheese mixture on top of the cookies. Arrange mango slices on top of the cheese mixture then cover with another quarter of the cheese mixture. Sprinkle chocolate, if using. Repeat the layers.
Fold both ends of the cling wrap over the cake. Chill in the fridge for at least six hours. You may freeze the icebox cake but note that ice crystals will form if frozen.
To serve, peel off the cling film on top of the cake. Holding both ends of the cling film, pull the mango icebox cake out of the pan. Place on a flat surface. Peel off the cling film on the sides of the cake. Use a wide spatula to separate the cake from the cling film at the bottom. Transfer to a serving plate, slice and serve.