Coles mango producers Marie Piccone and Matt Palise share their secrets - and favourite ways - to get the most out of this beautifully juicy summer fruit. And we explain why mangoes are good for you.
Choosing the best mango
According to mango grower Matt Palise, director of Red Rich Fruits, “the best way to know if you’ve found the perfect Kensington Pride mango is to follow your nose!” The most delicious KP mangoes have a rich, fruity, sweet and fragrant scent, he says, particularly close to the stem. “If it smells amazing, go for it,” Matt adds. Other varieties such as R2E2 and Calypso will also provide a sweet smell. Always look for a mango that has a nice plump look, no signs of bruising or flattening and a subtle give when pressed. “Kensington Pride mangoes should also have yellow-orange skin, often with a pink-red blush, and when ripe will give slightly if pressed gently,” says Matt.
Top storing tips
Mangoes should be ripened at room temperature and once ripe, can be stored in the fridge for up to five days. Or you can freeze them – mango producer Marie Piccone of Manbulloo in Queensland recommends slicing the cheeks down both sides of the stone and removing the skin, before freezing for up to three months. “I put four in the bottom of a glass container, then put a piece of baking paper over them and then layer more on top,” Marie says. “You can pull them out as you need them – I use them to make great salsas and, of course, the frozen mango pieces are fantastic for smoothies.”
Quick cooking tips
While fresh is always best for mango grower Matt, he says “mango cheeks grilled on the barbecue until caramelised and charred comes a close second!” For a savoury version, Matt serves them with a light sprinkle of chilli powder or smoked paprika, a squeeze of lime, and a dollop of natural or Greek yoghurt. “For a sweet version, brush the grilled mango cheeks with Frangelico (or your liquor of choice), sprinkle with cinnamon and serve with a dollop of cream or mascarpone,” he says.
Marie loves adding mangoes to salads or curries – she drops chunks of mango into curries just before serving – but thinks they’re best as they are. And not just as a snack. “When we’ve eaten a really big Christmas lunch or dinner, we cut up mangoes and serve them for dessert,” she says. “They’re the ultimate healthy end to a meal.” And the best way to slice a mango? "For perfect mango slices, I cut both cheeks off, then spoon the whole cheek out with a serving spoon before slicing,” she says.
Health benefits of mangoes
Coles Group Manager for Nutrition & Health, Kim Tikellis, says you should enjoy two serves of fruit daily. She says the health benefits of mangoes are:
- Like most fruits, mangoes contain dietary fibre, folate for growth, plus essential mineral potassium.
- The yellow flesh of mango is naturally rich in beta-carotene which is converted to anti-oxidant Vitamin A. One serve of mango (150g or half a mango) provides a quarter of your daily requirement for Vitamin A, essential for healthy eyesight.
- Half a mango contains 90% of your daily Vitamin C needs, to help support immunity.