While I love the local, seasonal foods of my own region, I am also so grateful for the modern networks and shipping capabilities that let me eat tropical foods like bananas and mangos from time to time. A ripe, succulent mango is perhaps the greatest fruit on earth! I have a new favorite variety, too; it is the most fragrant mango I have ever had in my house.
The National Mango Board has been sending me samples of all the commercially available mangos as they come into season, and I have been eating through them to learn a little more about mangos and their quirks. (Tough job, eh? Someone has to do it...) I thought I was familiar with mangos and all their varieties, and many of these have been familiar: The hulking and ubiquitous Tommy Atkins, which never gets as ripe as I would like it to; the small, golden Ataulfo; the orange-fleshed Francis. But one was new to me, and this was not surprising, since honestly this variety looks a lot like the Tommy Atkins. It is a large, ovoid fruit, and it is called the Haden mango.
At one point this mango was grown extensively in Florida, but now it is mostly grown in Mexico. It is primarily in season and available during May and June, although you may find it a little later in the summer as well. It starts out green and red, like the Tommy Atkins, but as it ripens on the countertop it turns a rich, golden yellow. The most spectacular thing about this mango is its amazing fragrance; it steals out and perfumes the whole house, deliciously!
The Haden mango is also quite smooth and rich; it is nearly free of the thin fibers that get stuck in your teeth when eating most mangos. A ripe Haden is very sweet, with a custard-like texture, and very little of of the bitter or sharp green flavors of an underripe or less sweet variety.
This is definitely one variety I am going to seek out, when looking for mangos in the summertime. It was so rich and sweet, so perfumed — it really outclassed the other mangos I've tried so far this year.
Do you have a favorite mango variety? What do you like to do with mangos?
More on Mangos:
• How To: Slice a Mango
• Summer Cocktail: The Fresh Mango Sweet Escape
• Recipe: Mango Colada
• Video: Curtis Stone On How to Cut a Mango, Plus Bellinis!
• Recipe: Mango Ginger Frozen Yogurt
• Dessert Recipe: Mango Panna Cotta
• Recipe: Mango Kiwi Salsa
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.
(Images: Faith Durand)