How to Choose a Ripe Mango Every Time
Say goodbye to crunchy mango!
One of the best parts about warm weather is biting into a piece of juicy mango. Native to South Asia, the mango has made its way around the world. Sweet with some notes of citrus, it's no wonder that the mango has been a staple in many countries for centuries.
However, if you've ever bitten into an unripe mango, there's nothing that quite captures that feeling of disappointment. An overripe mango can also stir up these same feelings. Well, with just a few tricks in mind, you can choose a ripe mango every time—or at least eat it before it turns to mush.
How to Choose a Mango
Peak mango season is between March and June for many varieties, though they may be available longer. This means that now is the time to get the juiciest, most flavorful mangoes!
Your first inclination when choosing a mango might be to buy it based on its color, but that's not always an indication of ripeness. Depending on the type—there are typically 7 different varieties available in the US—the fruit may never change colors completely and continue showing off deep green patches.
According to the National Mango Board, you should give the mango a light squeeze, instead. If it is slightly soft, it's ripe. Your finger shouldn't leave a dent, but you also shouldn't feel like you're squeezing a rock.
The second indicator is the smell. Give the mango a good sniff near the stem. If it has a fruity odor, then it's ripe. These are perfect for eating within the next day or so.
How to Ripen a Mango
If you're not planning to eat it today or tomorrow, you should keep it in the fridge to slow down any further ripening, or choose a firmer mango at the market. Leave it on the counter for a few days, and it will be ready to eat in no time.
Similar to fruits like peaches and pears, mangoes can be ripened faster by placing them in a paper bag, and even faster if you also stick a banana in that bag. Bananas release a gas called ethylene, which causes fruit to ripen.
Make sure you enjoy it before it gets too ripe, though, as mangoes have a tendency to get stringy as they soften.
Hungry for more? Here's How to Pick the Ripest Fruit.
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Chef Tips and Tricks
Dive into summer with this fresh, light and healthy mango salad!
- 2 limes
- Olive oil
- Soy sauce
- Red onion, minced
- Lightly sautée the peanuts until golden.
- Take the carrots and cut into thin slices.
- Peel the mango and slice into thin strips.
- Squeeze the juice from 2 limes into a bowl, and add olive oil, soy sauce, minced onion, salt and pepper.
- In a bowl, toss together the mango, carrot, rocket, and lime-soy dressing.