Do you know what’s common between Ariana Grande and the Indo-Persian Sufi poet Amir Khusrau?
They both fell in love with mangoes.
And they are not alone. Often dubbed the king of fruits, mango has charmed millions through the thousands of years of its reign.
So, what does mango taste like?
For the most part, it’s juicy, sweet, and creamy. Some varieties also have delightful fruity undertones that make them even more sumptuous.
Some would say that mango tastes like peach. But that’s only one of the many facets of its appeal!
Is Mango Sweet or Sour (and How to Know if It’s Ripe Enough)?
Actually, they can be BOTH.
Note that mango is a seasonal fruit. The unripe mango is green in color and much harder and is available in the early part of the season.
Unripe mangoes are mostly sour in taste. Even so, they find use in a wide variety of Asian dishes and also in mango pickles.
It is between the mid of April and the end of June, that the ripe fruit hits the market. Ripe mangoes have golden yellow skin. Some varieties also have a touch of red or purple that makes them even more attractive. Besides, the shape of the fruit can also vary from oval to round, and even oblong.
The juicy flesh of the fruit can vary in taste depending on the variety. In reality, the rich flavor of mangoes depends on a complex range of compounds. One of the most important among them is furaneol.
The best varieties are sweet, creamy, and have a delicious fragrance. Other varieties have a sweet-sour taste that can also be terpeney. Some mango varieties are more fibrous than others.
What is the Best Way to Eat a Mango?
Aside from the fact that you can score it down the end and gobble it down, there are a few other “decent” and human-like ways to eat them.
One of the best ways to eat a mango is to cut them down the sides, minding the pit that comes down the middle. Once you have the slices, it becomes easier for you to either eat it like that or cut the flesh out with a knife.
Or you can always blend it together with other fruits. I like to combine it with coconut or papaya, but mango goes well with many fruits, so feel free to experiment!
How Should You Store Mangoes?
It is a pretty tricky question.
Depending on the status of the ripening, a mango needs to be stored accordingly. If the mango is too raw, it is better to store it outside on the kitchen counters.
If the mango is ripe, store it in the fruit and produce section in the refrigerator. But, if you want the mangoes to last longer, we’d suggest peeling and cubing the mangoes and then storing them in an airtight container in the freezer. They generally last right for around 5-6 months when frozen.
Which Type of Mango is Best?
Let’s face it, that’s a tough one.
In the US, the Haden is one of the best mango varieties that was first grown in Florida. Its name originates from Captain John J. Haden, who first planted the seedlings. Many popular mango varieties like Tommy Atkins have their origins linked with Haden.
Julie or Saint Julian is another popular variety that originated from the Caribbean islands. Several other varieties like Gary, Carrie, and Graham have descended from Julie.
In India, it’s not just mango season but rather a period of mango mania! Around 1500 varieties of mangoes are grown in the country and each region has its own favorite.
Among the varieties that are commercially cultivated, Alphonso, Totapuri, Banginapalli, Sindhura, and Langra are some of the well-known varieties.
Which is the sweetest mango in the world?
As per the 1995 edition of the Guinness Book of World Records, the Carabao mango from the Philippines is the sweetest variety in the world.
The Sindhri from Pakistan, Ataulfo from Mexico, and the Sein Ta Lone from Myanmar are some other famous varieties.
Now that you have so many options to choose from, it’s time to pick your favorite mango variety.
That’s quite a challenge!
What Does African Mango Taste Like?
First off, the African mango (Irvingia gabonensis) is not the same as the mango fruit we are talking about.
It’s a different species that is grown in Central and West Africa and looks similar to the common mango. The flesh of the fruits is orange in color and the taste is usually sweet and at times lightly bitter.
However, it’s the seed of the African mango fruits that is a popular choice due to its supposedly effective fat-burning properties. It’s mostly available in the form of African mango extract.
In fact, the bark, leaves, and roots of the tree are used by various African tribes for treating a wide range of ailments.
What is the Nutritional Composition of a Mango?
Now that I have told you how a mango tastes like, knowing why it is such a healthy fruit is equally essential. Not only does this fruit taste good, but it is high in the nutritional benefits as well.
1. Good Blend of Carbs and Calories
The first factor that makes mangoes such a good fruit is the combination of carbs and calories. It doesn’t have a very high carb or calorie count.
A cup of ripe mango consisting of around 170g contains around 100-110 calories and 25-30g of carbohydrates, which is pretty considerate.
Since mangoes have a fibrous texture, many people think that the fruit is high in fiber, which is not necessarily the case. It contains around 3-4g of fiber per cup serving.
2. No Fat Variant
Would you be surprised to know that mangoes don’t contain any harmful fats in them? Because they don’t. It has 0 fat, which again is one reason it is considered a healthy fruit to snack on.
3. High in Vitamins
Mangoes have many vitamins in them, including Vitamin A, B6, C, and E. It contains around 70-80% Vitamin C in it, which helps reduce the free radical damage and improve your immune health.
Vitamin A in the fruit helps improve your vision and promotes healthier cell differentiation without any issues.
Vitamin E is relatively less and amounts to under 10%, which is enough to help impose antioxidative properties and eliminate the free radical damage and oxidative stress in the body.
Lastly, Vitamin B6 helps contribute to several cell mechanisms in the body and aids with the red blood cell formation. It promotes protein metabolism on the side.
Head over here for more benefits of mangoes.
A History Bite: Where Did Mango Originally Come From?
If there isn’t a discipline called history of fruits (fruitology? fruithistory?) I think someone should definitely invent it.
Mangoes have been a part of Indian traditions and folklore for over 5000 years. With time, they spread to other south Asian countries and later to Europe. Right now, more than 75 percent of the mangoes produced in the world are cultivated in Asia, with India being the largest producer.
No wonder it’s the national fruit of the country!
It was the Persians who planted mango seeds in east Africa around the 10th century. In the 16th century, the tropical fruit crossed the Atlantic and landed in Brazil, with the help of the Portuguese explorers. By the 19th century, mangoes were grown in Mexico and later in the United States.
Honestly, you can write a whole book about the variety of mangoes and the folklore linked to them – even if it weren’t for mango’s VIP fans.
Bottom Line: Better Now Than Never!
It doesn’t matter where you are from; mangoes make for a versatile fruit that can be used for both sweet and savory dishes.
If you haven’t tried a mango ever, I urge you to do so before the apocalypse hits. I hope this article gives you a clear understanding of how a mango tastes and why you would want to include it in your everyday diet.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which mango is the king of mangoes?
The Alphonso is often termed the king of mangoes. Due to its rich texture and juicy fiber-free flesh, it’s one of the most popular mango varieties in India.
Is Mango Lassi good for health?
Mango Lassi is not just good but great for health. It is a delicious combination of ripe mango and fresh yogurt and is packed with protein, fibers, probiotics, and micronutrients. Go for it!
What can be made from mango pulp?
Frankly, I prefer to eat a ripe mango raw. But you can also use the pulp to make a wide variety of mouth-watering desserts like mango souffle, jam, mango mousse, sherbet, or ice cream.