29 November 2010
The delicious and juicy mango has long been one of the world's most popular fruits. The fruit's flavor is often described as an exotic mix of pineapple and peach. Mangoes are available from April to September, but June and July usually offer the best pick.
Thought to be native to India, mangoes have been cultivated for more than 4,000 years. The tree is related to the pistachio and cashew and each tree produces about 100 mangoes.
Mango is generally sweet, although the taste and texture of the flesh varies, some having a soft, pulpy texture similar to an over-ripe plum, while the flesh of others is firmer, like a cantaloupe or avocado, or may have a fibrous texture. Sour, unripe mangoes are used in chutneys, pickles, side dishes, or as I prefer them may be eaten raw with salt, chile or soy sauce.
When buying a mango, make sure it has a tropical fruity aroma; unripe mangoes have no scent. A fresh mango will give slightly to the touch, stay away from very soft or bruised fruit. If they aren't quite ripe, storing them in a paper bag in a dark warm place (like the oven)for a few days always works for me.
Recipe with mango: