When I was younger, we had a generous mango tree in my grandparents’ patio. This time period was purely festive in the house. The activity was to go to the patio, collect ripe mangos and sit at the table all together to eat them as if they were apples. I don’t know if it was more fun to taste them or see everyone’s face full of mango, until leaving the seed clean. The memory of that scene still makes me smile.
We are in mango season. It’s now when they are the most delicious and economical, so take advantage. This tropical fruit is full of vitamin A, B, C, carotenes and antioxidants. They say that it beats cancer and if in case you didn’t know, it helps with digestion, since it has the same enzymes that make up the famous papaya.
There is much variety and some are sweeter than others. In fact, there is a peculiar one called Mango Champagne or Mango Ataulfo, which is harvested in Chiapas Mexico and is seen here in the United States. This mango is peculiar due to its intense yellow color and is identified it by its curved shape, similar to a cashew. It’s smaller and more expensive than a regular mango, but it’s seed is smaller, it’s like silk in your mouth, fleshy and its pulp is very soft because it has almost no fibers. It’s worth a try!
Up until July, we will see all mango varieties take over the market. If you buy them green, leave them at room temperature and do not use them very ripe because they lose flavor and texture.
With them, you can prepare a sauce for pork, fish, salmon and even with shrimp. You can add it to a pico de gallo, guacamole or a Colombian hogao. It’s perfect as dressing for a salad, in a ceviche, in a cocktail, in a cake, a flan or a cheesecake, smoothies and even rice with coconut is fine.
Doreen Colondres is a celebrity chef. Author of the book The Kitchen Doesn’t Bite. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram @DoreenColondres and visit www.LaCocinaNoMuerde.com, www.TheKitchenDoesntBite.com