Mango In the Rice Bin: What’s Going On Here?

published Jun 13, 2011
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

While visiting family, I made a curious discovery in the kitchen: mangoes in the rice bin! Can you guess why?

No, it’s not some strange way to make Mango with Sticky Rice. As my aunt explained, it’s an ages-old technique to speed up the ripening process! Whenever she has green mangoes, she buries them in the rice bin (not on top as in the photo above) and within a day or two they’re ready to eat.

We can only guess that burying the mango in rice concentrates its ethylene gas, a natural plant hormone that causes fruit to turn softer and sweeter. It’s similar to putting fruit in a paper bag to accelerate ripening. Whether one method is better than the other, we aren’t sure.

How do you ripen mangoes or other fruit?

(Image: Emily Ho)