We all know that mango, often referred to as the ‘King of Fruits’, is one of the most widely eaten summer fruits. Its bittersweet taste makes it hard to resist, and with summers knocking on our doors, it’s time to get your hands on those juicy fresh and sweet mangoes.
Mangoes are not unknown to Indians, but there are still some stories and tricks that you may not know about. To help you with such curiosities, we are here with some interesting information about your fruit, courtesy of Grow with Kimaye, INI Farms.
Did you know that the name ‘mango’ itself has an interesting history? Mangoes are native to Southeast Asia and were first discovered in the northern states of India, where the fruit was known as Amra Phal. Little by little it was introduced in various parts of the country and had different names that adhere to different geographies. When it was introduced in South India, they called it Aam-kay or Maamkay in Tamil. And soon, the Malayalis called it Maanga. It was around the same time that the Portuguese discovered the fruit in the southern region and introduced it to the world as Mango!
Mangoes also delve into history and play an important role in Indian mythology, where the fruit is considered a symbol of prosperity, wealth, and fertility.
What’s in a handle?
Besides the vibrant flavor, mangoes are also packed with nutrients. They are a good source of fiber and vitamin C, along with other vitamins that boost immunity and help fight disease and infection. Mangoes can also aid digestion and are rich in antioxidants. The antioxidant elements, lutein and zeaxanthin, can also help fight sight problems.
How to choose the right handle?
Mangoes come in several varieties with different colors and textures. So when shopping for mangoes, don’t be fooled by the color. The handles can be controlled only by squeezing them lightly to feel the smoothness. However, if you buy a box of green mangoes, try this to ripen them quickly: Store your mangoes in a fully covered brown paper bag for 1-2 days, depending on the fruit. This will speed up the ripening process and you will be able to consume the fruits without having to wait!
Cut it the right way
There are no rules for this, but it is always better to follow some basic rules like washing the handle well. Use a cutting board and kitchen knife, and if you think you can handle it without a cutting board, think again! Cut off both cheeks and lay them on the surface before slicing them vertically without cutting into the skin. Cut them into small cubes and scoop them out or add to your salads and smoothies!
Types of mangoes
There are different types of mangoes around the world and they all have their own bittersweet purpose. The region-specific mangoes have a different texture and flavor. Some of the famous types of mangoes in India are Alphonso, Kesar, Dasheri, Banganpalli, and Badami. Alphonso, known as the King of Mangoes, is widely grown in Maharashtra, while Banganpalli is grown in Karnataka and is slightly larger.
Turn it into delicious desserts
Indians love mangoes and have discovered various ways to turn them into a variety of dishes. Bittersweet nature allows all options to be explored. Kachchi Kairi (raw mango) itself is a key ingredient in most pickles and chaat. Mangoes can be mixed into cheesecakes, desserts, smoothies, custards, and other things, but the purest, unfiltered dish would always be aamras, the perfect summer dessert that you can’t help but want.
May this summer be Mangolicious!