Recommended Mauritian food- Sweets, Desserts and Drinks
YoshiniFebruary 12 20180 Comments
Alongside international cakes and gourmet pastries, Mauritius is home to some local sweet delights that will appeal to any sweet tooth.
Filled with rich and diverse cultures it is no surprise that the Mauritian sweet dishes and delicacies have been inspired from Indian, French and Chinese cuisine. Over time, some of these dishes have transformed to fit the ingredients available, as well as to cater to the local taste buds.
These treats are not only cheap but are available at almost every tuck-shop, street stall or café.
Mauritian Desserts and Sweet dishes
One must try the various Mauritian sweets that are not only cheap but are available at almost every tuck-shop, street stall or café.
Gateau Gingli Rier
Inspired by the Chinese sesame balls, Gateau Gingli is not only plentiful during the Chinese Spring festival, but can be found almost everywhere at any time. Instead of being stuffed with bean paste, they are sweet small balls rolled in sesame seeds and fried.
Gato Patate is made from sweet potatoes as the main ingredient. These small cakes are shaped into a half-moons and filled with coconut and sugar before being deep-fried. They are then distributed among friends and families in colourful packaging and boxes.
These are small round sweets consisting of gram flour, grated coconut, almonds, butter, nutmeg and sugar. The mixture is cooked and afterwards shaped into small balls. Laddoos are traditionally served at religious festivals and ceremonies.
A unique Mauritian pastry is the napolitaine- a shortbread biscuit sandwiched with jam and topped in a sugar icing. It is handed out on special occasions in different shapes and colours, though the classic round shape and pink icing is the most timeless.
Oundé is traditionally a rice-based sweet where small balls refined with sugar, vanilla, and cardamom are coated with desiccated coconut. Alternatively, semolina can be used instead of ground rice.
Various types of pudding can be found in local bakeries and pastry shops. Among the most popular ones are poudine mai, made with cornstarch and custard, bread pudding- a Mauritian take on bread & butter pudding and galettes manioc, a cassava-coconut pudding.
The Mauritan twist on the French pastry Puit d’amour, includes little baskets of shortcrust pastry filled with a vanilla custard-cream mixture, topped with desiccated coconut and a glazed cherry.
This is a shortcrust pastry filled with a banana mixture. The tart typically uses very ripe bananas, which are mashed instead of sliced, and then the top is layered with strips of pastry in a crisscross pattern.
National drinks in Mauritius
Besides fields of fruits and vegetables, Mauritius also has plantations of sugarcane and tea, used in the production of local favourite drinks.
Sugarcane is mostly used for the production of spirits, in particular rum, which is one of the more popular alcoholic drinks on the island. Several distilleries are set up on the island, offering different flavours, from coffee to tropical fruits. The island also has tea fields, which not only serve as a plantation but also as a historical site.
A flavored iced-milk drink made by mixing syrup with tapioca seeds, agar and milk. Evaporated milk and vanilla can be added for extra flavor and richness.
Pheonix Beer is the most popular beer on the island. In production since 1963, it holds a special place in the heart of Mauritians, known as the ‘golden lager’.
This tropical paradise would not be complete without fresh coconut water, sometimes served bottled or directly from the coconut with a straw.
Mauritius is new to international rum scene, but St Aubin has been producing rum since 1819 with cane juice. A variety of flavours are produced and consumed from spicy to fruity.
This refreshing drink is simply made with soaked tamarind pulp, sugar and water. Alternatively, panakon is a type of lemonade flavoured with tamarind.
Tea may be one of the most consumed drinks in Mauritius, and is often had throughout the day. Vanilla tea from the local plantations is a popular drink during afternoon teatime.