Fruits of Liberia–Mango

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Mango season in Liberia starts in late dry season, and extends to early rainy season, so usually sometime in March through May-June or so.  There seem to be two distinct varieties in Liberia.  These are early-season mangoes, which are long and skinny, and when ripe just start to shade to yellow.  These are early-season mangoes.  The yellow one above was almost over-ripe.  The late-season mangoes are more like what you see in stores in the U.S., shorter, fat, and with a red cast to them when ripe.

DSC01591The easiest way I’ve found to handle a mango is with a serrated knife.  Standing the mango on the stem end (it will be just a bit flatter), you slice down each side of center, trying to skirt the seed.  With these long ones, you can cut nearly on the center line and come out fine.  I tend to err on cutting too far away from the seed, which is a bonus for the person who gets to eat the remaining fruit off the seed.  There’s no other way that I’ve found to get all of it off, other than by using your teeth.  Rather than taking the skin of the fruit, you take the fruit off the skin.  I like to do diagonal slices, which then let you turn the piece of fruit almost inside out so you can cut the cubes off and into your fruit bowl.

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One great thing about mango season falling when it does here is that we have mangoes for Easter.  The past two years I’ve made angel food cake with mango curd for dessert, and it goes very well as a light dessert to counterbalance the Easter chocolates.

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