Friday, April 01, 2011

Breakfast #37: Summer Mango Straight Up

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I can’t talk about summer breakfasts without talking about mangoes. And, if you’ve been reading for a while, I can’t talk about our mangoes without getting a little too hyperbolic. So I will try to restrain myself as much possible.

I can only speak from my own personal experience that our mangoes are the sweetest fruit I have ever tasted. Not just the sweetest mangoes. The sweetest fruit. To my fellow countrymen, I know sometimes you may feel like we might not have much too brag about** but people, I tell you this, this is chest-puffing, feet-strutting, head-bobbing braggable. Something we can all click our heels over my friends. I know that I often bemoan our lack our fresh figs and berries and wild forest mushrooms, but really, I would never trade. Never ever***.

You can get mangoes almost year round here, as some farmers and fruit producers do their sorcery to get more harvests in a year. But the best mangoes are still the ones that come in the summer. Impossible sweet and juicy. And if you can find a farm that harvests only once a year, when the fruit is truly in season, that is gold. These mangoes are the pinnacle of everything a mango should be and are proof positive that produce is truly best when they are in season.

You can imagine my excitement when our supplier alerted her buyers that that those very mangoes, those that we have patiently (or impatiently) waited a year for, were now being harvested! We placed our order and the three of us went to pick up our 5-kilo box.

Yes, 5 kilos of mangoes. It’s summer after all and we will be having it from breakfast (and dessert) quite often. I top my yogurt with generous chunks and C has some smoothies planned. Little C will also be partaking of this most brilliant of tropical fruits -- already one of her favorite snacks.

But before all that, my best summer breakfast ever. I’d like to present you with a grand meal in which mangoes have been deliciously and skillfully incorporated. If I am honest though, I have to say that, for me, the absolute best way to enjoy our mangoes is straight up. And there is no better way to greet a sunny summer morning than with one of these.

Now, don’t be fooled. This is simple but by no means haphazard. First you need to wait until the mango is at its prime moment of ripeness – the skin will be uniformly deep yellow bordering on orange, the fruit will still be firm with just a bit of yield, losing its unripe rigidity, and above all else the smell…the smell of it will waft through the room and will be at its most concentrated in its stem portion. Once optimum ripeness is determined I like to place the mango in the refrigerator. I know, I know, for some it is a sacrilege to place fruit in the fridge, but believe me, once you have tried a well chilled mango on a hot summer morning you will be changing you tune. Slice as much of the cheeks from the seed as you can and scoop out the flesh with a spoon (as in the photo). After you are done you can peel the skin off the sides of the seed and bite off the flesh from there as well. Every bit is worth it!

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Happy summer everyone! :)

**That’s aside from the lovely beaches, lechon (best pig ever according to Anthony Bourdain!), and our charm ;)
***Permanently that is. The occasional barter is definitely accepted!

20 comments:

Sally - My Custard Pie said...

I can't wait for the ripe abundant mangoes to arrive in the market here in Dubai...we have a little bit longer to wait. Cherries are my absolute favourite fruit by beautiful mango dripping sweet juice is a very close second.

Mom-Friday said...

Yes! BEST MANGOES IN WORLD from PHILIPPINES! And we've been enjoying these succulent and sweet summer mangoes for the past 3 weeks now! :)))

Midge said...

Ahh, mangoes! Once you see and smell those gloriously golden ones in the markets, summer is definitely here!

Pamela said...

That is a crazy beautiful mango! I'm in Southern California and our mango season is a few weeks away. Can't wait for mangos with a squeeze of lime, in smoothies, with yogurt, in salsa, in salads with cilantro-lime vinaigrette....can't wait!

Hector Feliciano said...

Mangoes in Puerto Rico are the best!! They are so good that you often see people in the streets selling them. You also see people stopping in the streets to try to get them from the trees. I hate however when you are driving in a street that has mango trees to the side of the street and mangoes fall on the roof of your car...the worst!! however, i can not get that mad when is the best fruit ever!!!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Sally! Cherries are also yummy but over here they can be very expensive…but we still enjoy them every once in a while when they are around :) Enjoy the upcoming mango season!

Hi Mom-Friday! I agree! The farm I buy from just had their first harvest last week so we just got a box…I am already looking forward to our next box!

Hi Midge! So true…really puts a smile in my face and a skip in my step! Even on those days when the summer heat is just too much ;)

Hi Pamela! I can feel your excitement! I see a few smoothies in my future too…and maybe some daiquiris! Although I really love them just like this…plain chilled perfection :)

Hi Hector! Well, hopefully I will get the chance to go to Puerto Rico one day and sample them :) I had to laugh when I read your comment because my car does sport one such “mango dent”!

Shalum said...

Slurp!

Maria said...

My gosh how gorgeous colour! I adore mangoes!

veron said...

my biggest regret when I went home to the philippines this year was that it was not mango season yet. Definitely my favorite fruit bar-none!

Miri Leigh said...

Ah these mangoes look delicious- what great color! Thanks for sharing!

Ling said...

Joey,

In the unlikely event that you have mangoes to spare, here's a fabulous idea. Thought of this when I was reading your post: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/06/dining/06appe.html?ref=style

Now my challenge is to FIND such mangoes in the Netherlands... !

Ling

Rowina said...

That is one fruit that the Pinoys can really brag about, be proud of. Your photo is so tantalizingly, salivatingly yummy! I can almost feel the sweet aroma and hear the slurping sound of the spoon. Lucky you! Enjoy!

shaina vlaun said...

Summer breakfasts' are the best! Mangoes are one of my favorite fruits so this post hit the spot. My all time favorite is watermelon though, would love to hear your ideas for that fruit as well! I can't wait until summer when fruit is actually in season here on the East Coast (US). It was also nice to hear when mangoes are truly ripe; because that always is a little tricky to tell for me. Cant wait to try this out in the summertime, thanks!

Teng said...

This blog is really inviting! I love mangoes and same as you I will never trade it to any other. ;)

Grace In Full Measure said...

I love mangoes! We have a couple of indian mango trees at home so we get a supply of free mangoes every summer :-) They're not as huge as carabao mangoes but green indian mangoes are not as sour and are perfect for manggarachada. Yum. By the way, the picture of your little girl is so precious and adorable!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Shalum! You said it! Haha!

Hi Maria! I love the color of our mangoes…it really reflects the summer sun :)

Hi Veron! Next time you visit come during the season so you can fill up to your heart’s content!

Hi Miri! Thanks for appreciating them :)

Hi Ling! Thanks for the tips! We have been eating a whole lot of mangoes since summer started :) Hope you find some good one’s in your side of the world!

Hi Rowina! We are enjoying! :) Thanks for your kind words…I only want to do justice to this awesome fruit!

Hi Shaina! Watermelon is such a refreshing fruit…especially when the mercury is climbing! I haven’t had it any other way but fresh, but a nice watermelon shake is always welcome on a hot day :)

Hi Teng! Thanks! They are truly the best :)

Hi Grace! Thank you :) Lucky you to have an Indian mango tree! I actually love those when they are nearing ripe with bagoong :)

lunchbox said...

That is the best photo of a mango ever! You just got me drooling. Nothing beats the Philippine mango.

Divina Pe said...

I absolutely agree with what you've written. There's really nothing like eating ripe mangoes straight up. It's really a sensual fruit. Nice to back on your blog again..

ChichaJo said...

Hi Mireille! Thank you but I can’t take the credit…our mangoes are just that gorgeous ;)

Hi Divina! Nice to see you here as well! It truly is best straight up!

Gabriel said...

Mangoes are great, it can be hard to find good ones here in the USA though. The flavor of each mango seems different to me. Sometimes I get a very strong smooth banana flavor, while other times citrus orange or sweet peach flavors come through. A very unique fruit indeed! :)