Mangoes are on the menu this summer
Supplied by the SA Mango Growers' Association
Mmmmm … mangoes are on the menu this summer!
There are two good things about this time of year: it’s summer and mangoes are back in season! Because the only thing better than holidays are holidays filled with the fragrance and flavour of summer, which is exactly what you get every time you indulge in sweet, succulent mangoes.
Whether you’re heading for the berg, beach or bush these holidays, or taking it easy at home with afternoon and suppertime braais, put summer on your plate with tantalising mango mains, sides or desserts.
How about a real summer stunner? Whip up a batch of sticky Cajun chicken and mango skewers, with chicken marinated in Cajun spice and mango juice, skewered and grilled, and served with fresh mango slices and lime wedges!
Or an exotic mayo-less mango coleslaw of grated carrot, shredded red and white cabbage, and chunks of mango, drenched in a dazzling dressing of mango juice, olive oil, chopped chilli and sesame seeds.
Or a moreish mango-misu (that’s low-fat mango tiramisu, to you and me!), with finger biscuits soaked in mango juice placed in alternating layers with fresh mango slices and low-fat cream cheese and vanilla yoghurt, topped with berries and mint leaves. Yes, this means you have permission to have dessert for breakfast! Can you say mmmmm … mangoes? We can! Scroll down for these delicious recipes and more!
To wow your guests with these mango marvels, start looking for the different South African mango cultivars on our shelves. Tommy Atkins mangoes are first to arrive in early December and are available into January. You’ll know this medium- to large-sized fruit from its thick skin and sunset orange-red colouring.
Next up is Kent and Keitt, both available from February to early April. These green-skinned mangoes (Keitt has a slight apricot blush) remain green even when ripe and ready to eat, and boast firm, fibreless, fragrant flesh with a sweet flavour.
To judge ripeness, gently squeeze the fruit: ripe mangoes “give” slightly under your fingers. Firm mangoes ripen at room temperature over a few days.
Mangoes are high in vitamins A, C and biotin, and the mineral potassium. This yummy fruit is also a source of vitamins B1 and B6, and free from fat, sodium and cholesterol – so many more reasons to pack a mango in your padkos or cooler, or along with your braai pack these holidays!
Tips to get the most out of mango season
- You can tell if a mango is ripe by smelling the stem or squeezing it gently. A ripe mango will have a full, fruity aroma or will feel slightly soft to the touch and yield to gentle pressure.
- Remember the Kent and Keitt mangoes often remain green even when they are ripe.
- Store mangoes at room temperature to ripen.
- Once ripe, store your mangoes in the refrigerator for a couple of days.
- Try using a vegetable/fruit peeler to peel your mango – it will cut down on wastage and results in much less mess!
7 recipes starring mangoes
1. Breakfast mango bruschetta
Cut up a mango into generous wedges and grill the wedges on a griddle pan. Toast bruschetta slices and top them with the mango wedges and goat’s milk cheese. Drizzle with honey and sprinkle with sweet dukkah before serving.
2. Exotic mayo-less mango coleslaw
Toss together grated carrot, shredded red and white cabbage, and chunks of mango. Then whisk up some mango juice, olive oil, 1 chopped chilli and sesame seeds. Pour the dressing over the salad and garnish with micro herbs – the perfect summertime salad.
3. Tasty mango, feta and parsley tabbouleh
Cook tabbouleh according to the packet instructions. Toss the tabbouleh together with some feta and parsley and arrange slivers of mango on top. Serve with lemon wedges and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. This dish is great for meat-free Mondays!
4. Moreish beef and mango pita pockets
Rub sirloin or rump steaks with meat rub or your choice of seasoning, and then marinate with olive oil and lemon juice for 20 minutes. Pan-fry to your taste, slicing the steaks when done. Warm the pita breads, cut the tops open and fill the pockets with slices of steak, mango and spring onion, topped with a generous dollop of hummus and chopped mint and coriander. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and serve immediately.
5. Sticky Cajun chicken and mango skewers
Toss raw chicken wings in Cajun spice with honey and mango juice. Grill on the braai or under an oven grill until crispy and slightly blackened. Serve on skewers with mango slices and lime wedges. Ideal for the braai!
6. Delicious dessert mango-misu (low-fat mango tiramisu)
Soften finger biscuits by soaking them in mango juice. Whisk low-fat or fat-free cream cheese together with low-fat vanilla yoghurt. In a pretty bowl, alternate between layers of biscuit, sliced mangoes and the cream cheese mixture. Finish off with a garland of fresh berries and mint leaves.
7. On-the-go mango
Peel a mango and slice into wedges. Put the wedges in a screw top jar and close the lid. Pop the jar into your picnic or padkos bag and enjoy as a refreshing snack!