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Mangoes

The mango is one of the most consumed fruits around the world. It is a tropical/subtropical fruit that ranges from 5-20cm long, weighing in between 200-400g per piece, although some cultivars may reach 1 kilo (or 2.2lbs) per piece. When fully ripe, mangoes taste sweet and juicy. When unripe, mangoes have a taste that’s very tart and acidic with a texture like that of raw turnip or jicamas. Mangoes are consumed both in their ripe and unripe forms.

  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Order: Sapindales
  • Family: Anacardiaceae
  • Genus: Mangifera
  • Species: M. indica
  • Binomial name: Mangifera indica

Mango Trivia

  • While it may not seem like it, mangoes are related to cashews and pistachios
  • The oldest known living mango tree is over 300 years old, and it still produces fruit to this day
  • It is believed that The Buddha meditated under a mango tree
  • Giving a basket of mangoes is considered a gesture of true friendship

Mango Buying Guide

A ripe mango will smell like a ripe mango. The color of the fruit isn’t a good indicator of the sweetness and taste of the fruit. The best way to check for ripeness is to give the mango a gentle squeeze, and it should be firm but still have a little give to it.

Avoid mangoes that are too soft and have big black spots on the exterior. Small black spots are okay, but avoid those with spots larger than a penny.

Tip! You can enjoy mangoes in their unripe form! Better to buy unripe mangoes than overripe mangoes. 

Mango Production & Farming in Texas

The last known large scale commercial production of mangoes in Texas was in the Lower Rio Grande area prior to the severe freezes in the 1980s. Today, Texas mango production is limited to small growers and homeowners. The two mango varieties that have seen success are the “Haden” and “Irwin” varieties of mangoes.

Pesticides:

Mangoes have made it into the EWG’s Clean Fifteen List. Of all the mangoes tested, 78% screened negative for any pesticide residue. Of those that screened positive, Thiabendazole was found but in levels way below the EPA’s set limits.

Geography:

The mango tree requires full sun and should be protected from the winter chill and strong winds. It can grow in almost any well-drained soil with a pH of 5.5-7.5. The soil should be deep as to accommodate the mango’s massive root system.

Packaging:

While mangoes taste best when allowed to ripen on the tree. Since mangoes don’t transport very well when fully ripe, they are usually harvested unripe and are ripened at a later stage.

After being picked from the tree, the mangoes are individually wrapped in newspapers or other packing material to prevent bruising on transport. They are then cooled down to remove residual field heat for storage.

Cooled unripe mangoes can be stored for up to a month at optimal conditions.

Before being sent out to customers/stores, the mangoes are ripened in a ripening room to ensure uniform ripening of the final product.

Eating Mangoes

To enjoy a mango, a light wash is first recommended to remove any surface dirt or contaminant. The most common way to eat a mango is to slice it from the top, lengthwise along the pit, repeat on the other side. You should end up with three pieces, two halves and the pit. From there, scoop and enjoy!

To eat unripe mango, you can peel it like a potato or an apple. After peeling, slice it like you would a ripe mango, then slice it down further into manageable bite sizes. This can be dipped in salt or vinegar to counter the tartness.

Storage:

Unripe mangoes can be stored at room temperature for a few days until it fully ripens. To speed up ripening of unripe mangoes, they can be stored in paper bags.

Ripe mangoes can be stored in the fridge for up to five days.

If you want to freeze ripe mangoes, you have to remove the flesh from the pit and store in a freezer-safe container for up to six months.

Cooking:

Mangoes are best enjoyed raw or as a smoothie. They can also be added to fruit salads and garden salads to add that tropical feel to it. Mangoes can also be used as toppings for cakes, custards, ice cream and other cold desserts.

For heated applications, mango is best used as an ingredient for sauces and chutneys.

Nutrition:

When they say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, this can be applied to mangoes as well because they contain as much vitamins and minerals as an apple, and in some cases, even more.

  • Carbs
    • While the carbs in mangoes are mostly sugar, it is worth noting that these are natural sugars and are better for you than processed and refined sugars that you see in other snacks.
    • The mango is considered to be a low-glycemic food with the glycemic index estimated to be at around 51. Low-glycemic foods have minimal impact on blood sugar levels so you can enjoy mangoes without worrying too much.
  • Fiber
    • Mangoes are also a decent source of dietary fibers.
  • Vitamins and minerals:
    • Mangoes are high in vitamin C.
      • A serving of mangoes can give you up to 75% of your RDI of vitamin C.
      • Vitamin C helps boost your immune system and helps with tissue repair.
    • Mangoes are a good source of potassium.
      • Potassium aids in regulating blood pressure and plasma volume for proper fluid balance.
    • Mangoes are also a good source of Vitamin A.
      • Vitamin A is needed for good skin, healthy vision, normal cell development and reproductive health.

When Are Mangoes in Season in Texas?

One of the most salient benefits to eating seasonally is that you are effectively reducing your carbon footprint and supporting a more geographically sustainable food economy. We are rarely encouraged to think about the physical lengths our food travels before arriving on the market shelves. And all of this travel comes with a hefty environmental cost that is concealed from the consumer’s eye. Check other fruit and veg that’s in season in Texas.

Nutrition

DV%

  • Serving Size: 1 Serving
  • Calories: 135 7%
  • Carbs: 35.2g 12%
  • Sugar: 30.6g 0
  • Fiber: 3.7g 15%
  • Protein: 1.1g 2%
  • Fat: 0.6g 1%
  • Saturated Fat: 0.1g 1%
  • Trans Fat 0g 0%
  • Cholesterol 0mg 0%
  • Sodium 4.1mg 0%
  • Vitamin C 57.3mg 96%
  • Vitamin A 1584IU 32%
  • Calcium 20.7mg 2%
  • Iron 0.3mg 1%
  • Potassium 323mg 9%
  • Vitamin E 2.3mg 12%
  • Vitamin K 8.7mcg 11%
  • Vitamin B6 0.3mg 14%
  • Folate 29mcg 7%
  • Magnesium 18.6mg 5%
  • Phosphorus 22.8mg 2%
  • Manganese 0.1mg 3%
  • Copper 0.2mg 11%
  • Zinc 0.1mg 1%

Seasonality

When are apples in season in Texas?

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec

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