I'll have some of of that aam ras with puris, please.
May 11, 2006 6:34 PM   Subscribe

It's mango season in India! Thanks to a new agreement, Americans will be able to partake in the joy of Indian mangoes, but in the meantime, there are plenty of ways to enjoy a Florida mango. Get creative with recipes, try one with chili powder or salt and pepper (and no, MTV, it's nothing sexual), buy the mango lover in your life a splitter, or make a wish at a mango tree. (Hint: try South Florida.) Just don't eat (or burn) the leaves!
posted by anjamu (50 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
That should read, "Americans will soon be able to partake in the joy of Indian mangoes."

Not yet, sadly. It will be another year or so before we start importing them by the planeload.
posted by anjamu at 6:38 PM on May 11, 2006

Oh man, I love MIA and wondered about the "I salt and pepper my mango" thing. I guess I'm just a perv for assuming it was something dirty.
posted by piratebowling at 6:42 PM on May 11, 2006

Whereas, considering one of my friends told me that she puts garam masala on watermelon, I considered it a culinary thing.
posted by anjamu at 6:46 PM on May 11, 2006

Holy crap, gotta get me one of those splitter things! Anyone seen 'em for sale in Toronto?
posted by dobbs at 6:56 PM on May 11, 2006

Oh, and here's a recipe for Mango "chutney":

4 cups diced ripe mango
3 tbs lime juice
2 tbs minced ginger
2 green onions, white and 1 inch of green, diced
1/2 small jalepeno, cored, seeded, diced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 small handful of cilantro leaves

In a food processor, add all of the ingredients and pulse to combine well, but keep it chunky. Store in a covered container in the fridge for up to 2 or 3 days.

From this great book.
posted by dobbs at 7:00 PM on May 11, 2006 [1 favorite]

Mango splitter would be great. Haven't seen a really ripe mango here yet though, eh. Maybe I need to look at some different grocery stores.
posted by Talanvor at 7:05 PM on May 11, 2006

The mango splitter on Amazon. It looks very useful.
posted by soiled cowboy at 7:09 PM on May 11, 2006

Sweet (literally)! I remember mangos in India that were so juicy and succulant that you could stick a straw right into them and drink their insides.

Now, if only elotes would become a common street food, I could be very happy.
posted by Staggering Jack at 7:17 PM on May 11, 2006

I love adding cold chunks of mango to hot curried cauliflower or fish, with couscous and plain yoghurt.

Crazy yummy.
posted by moneyjane at 7:18 PM on May 11, 2006

Am I the only one who found the picture of the mango cutter... stimulating? I gotta get me one of those!

Also, can anyone attest to a significant difference between Florida mangos and Indan?
posted by lekvar at 7:20 PM on May 11, 2006

lekvar, my boyfriend was born in India, but his family currently lives in South Florida. They were very excited over the new trade agreement, so there must be something about it. They claim that the mangoes here are far inferior. Also I think that there are a lot of varieties we just don't get in the states.
posted by anjamu at 7:23 PM on May 11, 2006

Thank god. I am an American and my wife is from Bombay. If I can't get Alphonsos in NYC, I'm afraid she'll abandon me here!
posted by aletheia at 7:24 PM on May 11, 2006

may i strongly suggest the ataulfo mango? whole foods carries them and they're amazing. don't ruin them by adding anything. see description that follows:

Indonesian type - originated from a Hawaiian seedling strain, direct descendant of the Manila mango seedling race common in Veracruz State, Mexico. - The fruit is a small, flat, oblong shape, 6 - 12 ounces, greenish yellow to deep golden when ripe; delicious, very sweet, rich in flavor and close to fiber free. (butter!)
posted by Shike at 7:27 PM on May 11, 2006

Florida & Mexican mangos suck.

Apoos a.k.a. Alphonso only, Thank You.
posted by Gyan at 8:21 PM on May 11, 2006

Mmm, yum, I can't wait for some of those irradiated mangoes.
posted by baklavabaklava at 8:33 PM on May 11, 2006

Why does mango season also have to be the most painfully hot time of the year in India?

As a lover of both mangoes and India, this is proof enough for me that intelligent design is a crock of shit.
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:53 PM on May 11, 2006

Favorite dessert ever?

Sticky rice with mangos... with a scoop of coconut ice cream on the side!
posted by insomnia_lj at 9:06 PM on May 11, 2006 [1 favorite]

Florida & Mexican mangos suck.

FWIW, Mangoes in Australia suck as well.
posted by dhruva at 9:20 PM on May 11, 2006

My nicaraguan uncle introduced me to sprinkling slightly underripe mangoes with some Tony's, and while I thought he was completely nuts at first, it's delicious..just the right amount of spicy and salty, but he always said the Florida mangoes are crap compared to what he was raised with...
posted by nile_red at 9:47 PM on May 11, 2006

Mangoes in South Africa are wonderful. The ones I had in Florida, decades ago, tended to be under-ripe and carried a flavor akin to turpentine. The ones here are huge and ripen nicely in the fruit bowl. Sloppy eating, yum!

I don't see how that mango splitter is so good. Mangoes here are of variable size. The splitter is 'one-size-fits-all'. I haven't noticed them sold here, but I never knew they existed, so would have ignored them. Now I'll look.
posted by Goofyy at 10:13 PM on May 11, 2006

What's a famous Indian fruit without an accompanying myth?
posted by sk381 at 10:22 PM on May 11, 2006

My mama done tell me that the best way to eat a mango is over a sink
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 10:42 PM on May 11, 2006

ssshhhh, don't tell my fiance about this. she's deathly allergic to mangoes but refuses to believe it (no matter how badly her face puffs up and everyone starts accusing me of beating her)
posted by NGnerd at 10:47 PM on May 11, 2006

insomnia_lj, I am SO with you. The breakfast of champions.

Juicy, juicy mangoes!
posted by shoepal at 11:12 PM on May 11, 2006

shoepal, a ♥ for that quote.
posted by anjamu at 11:28 PM on May 11, 2006

How to eat a mango:

1. Slice a wedge. It won't come off easy from the seed so accept the fact there will be tearing.

2. Take off your shirt.

3. Lean over the sink, gnash into the wedge. Repeat.

4. Use napkin only after the whole mango is consumed.
posted by sourwookie at 11:59 PM on May 11, 2006

Uh, monkeysaltednuts--I had no idea this was common wisdom.

Should've used preview.
posted by sourwookie at 12:01 AM on May 12, 2006

We've been getting organic Mangos here from somewhere, might be Mexico, for 2 for $5.00. On the whole, they have been well worth it. mmmmmmmmmangosssssss
posted by Windopaene at 12:04 AM on May 12, 2006

The mango cutter looks awesome, I hope it will also work on a peeled mango. I peel mangoes using a sharp knife, starting to cut at the stalk ending and circling down to the bottom in one go. Then I cut off the two big halves (which could be done by the cutter), after which I first finish the pit and enjoy the ease of eating the two big halves.
I wouldn't mind eating a salt and peppered mango with M.I.A., I thought she was cool even before I knew she actually has depth to her lyrics.
posted by Zombie Dreams at 12:09 AM on May 12, 2006

For those in South Florida who would like to broaden their mango experience, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden's International Mango Festival will be held July 8th and 9th. (They don't have the 2006 info up yet, but here's a link to the 2005 event.) I admit that I had no idea of the varietal depth of mangoes until I first attended one of Fairchild's tastings.

Gah, how will I get back to sleep, now that I'm craving that succulence?
posted by mkhall at 12:58 AM on May 12, 2006

Salt and pepper go well only with unripe mangoes, called 'ambi's, which ripen into 'aam's.
posted by sk381 at 1:03 AM on May 12, 2006

So, these Indian mangoes, will we get them in the UK? I was raised in Florida and apparently had no idea I was eating inferior mangoes all these years. Now I have a need to experience the real thing.
posted by mosessis at 2:28 AM on May 12, 2006

The ones I had in Florida, decades ago, tended to be under-ripe and carried a flavor akin to turpentine.

I tried a mango a few months ago. I don't know where it was from (bought in Charlotte, NC), but turpentine is a good word for the taste.
posted by Bort at 3:51 AM on May 12, 2006

One morning last summer, I walked downstairs for breakfast in the home where I was spending the week in Colombia, and a mango nearly hit me on the head as it fell off a tree. I picked it up, saw that it was intact, and brought it into the kitchen, where the cook promptly sliced it up and served it to everyone at the dining room table. Fresh mango, some scrambled eggs with cheese, tomatoes and onions, some slices of Manchego cheese and two cups of coffee. Best breakfast I've had in years.
posted by emelenjr at 4:17 AM on May 12, 2006

The mangoes here in the Virgin Islands are pretty good, but I haven't had many others to compare them to.
posted by ibmcginty at 5:19 AM on May 12, 2006

Hot Mango relish! MMMMMMM gooood!
posted by doctorschlock at 5:46 AM on May 12, 2006

My husband makes a great mango and black bean salsa: it's diced mangoes, black beans, diced red and green bell peppers, diced jalapeno, chopped cilantro, diced red pepper, lime juice, pineapple juice, salt, pepper and ground cumin. It's great with chips or as a sauce for poultry. Yum!
posted by lemoncello at 6:15 AM on May 12, 2006

Uh, that should be red onion. Sorry.
posted by lemoncello at 6:15 AM on May 12, 2006

I don't see how that mango splitter is so good.

I have one of those mango splitters, and, indeed, it's not so great. It wreaks havoc on a ripe mango and barely gets through a less-ripe one. It's one of the few OXO kitchen tools that I don't love to death.
posted by briank at 7:24 AM on May 12, 2006

Scrolling through all these comments, I observe:
- Mango is no longer a word
- I really want a freaking mango
posted by Isabeau Sahen at 7:39 AM on May 12, 2006

I too wept with joy. Down with US mangoes! Up with Brazilian mangoes! (Even though they're fibrous enough to be coming out from between your teeth for a few days.) Maybe next we'll be lucky enough to get the mangosten back *sniff*...
posted by whatzit at 8:53 AM on May 12, 2006

Am (pronounced ahhhmm) is the Hindi word for mango, a delightful combination of ahhh and yum. Or maybe it's ah and om?

The mango silhouette is the origin of the paisley shape.

Unripe mango slices are made very tasty with a sprinkle of salt or other salty spices. Indian kids seem to really like this as well as the tangy flavor of imli, tamarind. In fact, I've found many unripe fruits, like plums, taste delish with a pinch of salt.

The best, most convenient way to cut a mango in my experience is this way, the mango porcupine. The cubed pieces can be eaten off the halves while standing over a sink, slurping up the lusciousness or the cubes can be cut into a bowl.

The best mango pickle and chutney I've had outside homemade in India, is from Kalustyan's in New York City. It's affordable and easy to buy over the web or by phone. Kalustyans also sells medicinal herbs and beauty products from Asia. Simply walking in the door and wandering around this marvelous grocery store is, in my opinion, one of the most sensually exciting experiences that I've ever known.

Litchi season has also just begun! Yes! Mmm, litchi ice cream. And also, not to forget another lovely Indian mango treat, kulfi.
posted by nickyskye at 9:48 AM on May 12, 2006 [1 favorite]

South Florida has all kinds of mangoes. The little fibery ones that taste like turpentine are often identified as "turpentine mangos" for that reason.

I find Hawaiian varieties of mango to be the best, especially from a branch grafted onto a tree growing in Puerto Rico. Mmmmm, like a peach they was!
posted by bonefish at 10:02 AM on May 12, 2006

Holy crap, nickyskye, you need to make with an FPP like that comment.
posted by scrump at 11:03 AM on May 12, 2006

Staggering Jack: They are pretty common in downtown LA, especially around garment district.

They were one of my favorite parts of fabric shopping when I went there to do it.
posted by flaterik at 12:26 PM on May 12, 2006

Thanks scrump.
posted by nickyskye at 5:58 PM on May 12, 2006

Mango is so yummy, most recently with a green salad with spicy dressing and jicama. But don't eat too much! Beware of mango mouth. A compound in mangos is similar to the active compound in poison oak/ivy. More concentrated in the skin and sap, but you can also get it just from eating a lot of mango. Let's be careful out there.
posted by bephillips at 6:15 PM on May 12, 2006

Salt and pepper go well only with unripe mangoes.

I've found many unripe fruits, like plums, taste delish with a pinch of salt.

Unripe guavas are great with salt, too. These are particularly popular with my Vietnamese colleagues.
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:37 PM on May 12, 2006

Indian mangos are amazing. I was an exchange student in India, and my third day there, just as the jet lag was starting to wear off, my host family gave me a bowl of fresh mangos in cream (I'd never had real cream before, either). I had no clue anything could taste that good.

Mangos in the US are ok if you haven't had a real Indian mango in 10 years or so.

Green mangos with salt are also delicious, but in a totally different way.
posted by QIbHom at 9:13 AM on May 13, 2006

I ♥ litchis/lychees!
posted by shoepal at 4:47 PM on May 15, 2006

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