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As a slight diversion from these smelly issues, even if Indian food can leave overpowering smells, perhaps it could be forgiven because the country has also produced another overpowering aroma that no one could object to. I went to Crawford Market in my lunch break and the sheds on the side were full of guys unpacking the crates of Alphonso mangoes that had come fresh from the Konkan. The smell inside, at noon on a hot Bombay summer's day was almost intoxicating - a huge hot sweet aroma of mangoes and the hay they were packed in. I was trying to resist buying alphonsoes on grounds of general poverty, but one whiff and I'd bought six!

Vikram

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vikram, and others in india for the summer,

you are not allowed to mention mangoes. there will be no more mention of mangoes on this forum (or in my earshot) till the monsoons arrive.

thanks!

mongo

:laugh:

Missing the M******, eh Mongo?

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vikram, and others in india for the summer,

you are not allowed to mention mangoes. there will be no more mention of mangoes on this forum (or in my earshot) till the monsoons arrive.

thanks!

mongo

Doc, which variety are you talking about?

Alphonso, Totapuri, Payari, Kesar, Badami, Malgoba, Dussehri, Langda....

:biggrin:

I fry by the heat of my pans. ~ Suresh Hinduja

http://www.gourmetindia.com

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Mongo, apologies, but I'm curious, is it really that hard to get good mangoes outside India? I had a young Brit houseguest a few days back and I thought I'd give him a treat with those alphonsos, and I added on a bunch of the red bananas that are increasingly available in Bombay. He was mildy interested by the red bananas, but quite blasé about the mangos - "you can get quite good mangos in England these days," he told me. (Ironically the one thing that did impress him was the big papaya I just picked up as a cheap filler!)

Judging by the number of boxes piling up for export that I saw in Crawford Market, it seems quite likely that its possible to get alphonsos quite easily abroad. All those fruit sellers there proimently advertise the fact that they export alphonsos. And while I haven't eaten mangos grown outside India, I'm told they can be very good. I was too late for the mango season in Egypt but a friend who was living there and who's a born and bred Mumbaikar, told me that much to his astonishment they were better than most alphonsos he had eaten. The general quality of the fruit and veg grown in the delta is so outstanding I can almost believe that.

Of course, I realise if you want to be dogmatic about it, you could say you are the kind of person who only eats Alphonso/Dussehri/Langda/whatever variety you obsess about, but I think that's just daft. Alphonsos are the best of course, I mean, its so obvious I don't even see any point in debating it, but I'll happily eat any others I'm given - I'm particularly fond of those mammoth sized Banganapallis that next to no one ever makes much of. Anyway, that point apart, how good or bad are the mangos you get where you live?

Vikram

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you can get quite good mangos in England these days

You can.

Most of the export-grade mangoes from Ratnagiri go to the UK and the Gulf States, so your friend has no problem getting Alphonso mangoes in quantity (and at a reasonable price) all through the season.

It's in the USA that we're totally deprived, the stringent FDA does not allow import of Indian fruit or vegetables for a number of (possibly outdated) reasons, and thus we're stuck Apoos-less. It's not that there aren't mangoes in the marketplace, there are lots of them - Mexican, Central American, Jamaican, etc. It's just that these mangoes give you only a maddening hint of what a good one can be, they are inconsistent and far more fibrous than the better varieties in India. Still, of those available here, we tend to get the Kent variety of which the best one or two in a dozen will be decent.

So, probably at the top of the list of food items that we can't get in the USA is Indian mangoes.

--

Green mangoes, by contrast, are available and aren't bad at all.

Here's a photo of some at my local desi store.

i5002.jpg

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Abbe saale is right :)

here i've been rushing to local indian stores every week, but so far they've always

been sold out, and there are only the bruised and bashed reject mangos

lying forlornly in cartons, and a fragrance lingering in the air, leading

straight to severe nostalgia, depression, and a desire to relocate immediately to

whatever imaginary part of india where one's happy childhood was located,

and live in a tile-roof bungalow with a deep, cool, front verandah,

an aam-thope across the dusty road,

every long droning summer afternoon,

spend on the verandah on a swing, the brain fever bird

dinning into your ears, and watching the horizon

for the heavy slateblue monsoon clouds.

of course, the fantasy includes someone else to make and deliver

endless mango fools, aam ras, aam ka panna, thenga-manga-pattaani-sundal,

mango kalan, and other delicacies, while one sits on the said

swing with a never ending supply of suitable reading, and a sense

of endless time.

every sticky night, end dinner with slices of different varieties of mangoes

to contrast the flavors and bouquets, then go out and have a moonlight

dip in the borewell tank to wash it all off, listening to the cicada concert.

then do the same again the next day.

instead i'm here beating on this defenseless computer,

to avoid beating myself on my stupid head that brought

me to this sorry state.....

request: can people share their favorite mango-related

writings, poetry, music, movie scenes, any such thing at all?

please provide lenghy quotations, links, clips, whatever you can.....

whether deeply traditional from the dawn of indus valley time

or immediately contemporary?

thanks in advance

milagai

(now wishing e-name was maangai)

where can i find a mango-shaped emoticon?

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here's a question I have?

I've eaten mangoes all over the world from when i was a baby.

When we lived in new york my folks would get cases of mangoes from the local asian grocery, which i believe came from Mexico.

One day when i was about 17 or 18, i ate one of these mangoes in the usual way, and my lips swoll up and were very itchy. Since then i haven't bene able to eat mangoes unless i score all the flesh off the skin, and take good care to wash my mouth with soap as soon as i am finished.

I understand that this is linked to poison ivy allergy, but i've nbever actually had poison ivy contact.

do y'all think i would get the same reaction from eastern mangoes as i do from western mangoes? do you hear of people getting allergies to mangoes back home?

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Abbe saale is right :)

here i've been rushing to local indian stores every week, but so far they've always

been sold out, and there are only the bruised and bashed reject mangos

lying forlornly in cartons, and a fragrance lingering in the air, leading

straight to severe nostalgia, depression, and a desire to relocate immediately to

whatever imaginary part of india where one's happy childhood was located,

and live in a tile-roof bungalow with a deep, cool, front verandah,

an aam-thope across the dusty road,

every long droning summer afternoon,

spend on the verandah on a swing, the brain fever bird

dinning into your ears, and watching the horizon

for the heavy slateblue monsoon clouds.

of course, the fantasy includes someone else to make and deliver

endless mango fools, aam ras, aam ka panna, thenga-manga-pattaani-sundal,

mango kalan, and other delicacies, while one sits on the said

swing with a never ending supply of suitable reading, and a sense

of endless time.

every sticky night, end dinner with slices of different varieties of mangoes

to contrast the flavors and bouquets, then go out and have a moonlight

dip in the borewell tank to wash it all off, listening to the cicada concert.

then do the same again the next day.

instead i'm here beating on this defenseless computer,

to avoid beating myself on my stupid head that brought

me to this sorry state.....

request: can people share their favorite mango-related

writings, poetry, music, movie scenes, any such thing at all?

please provide lenghy quotations, links, clips, whatever you can.....

whether deeply traditional from the dawn of indus valley time

or immediately contemporary?

thanks in advance

milagai

(now wishing e-name was maangai)

where can i find a mango-shaped emoticon?

Sniff....if I didn't have a dozen mangos waiting in my fridge, I'd be weeping with you.

I fry by the heat of my pans. ~ Suresh Hinduja

http://www.gourmetindia.com

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episure: if i hadn't been raised right, i would wish a mango-rash

on you immediately :)

bhelpuri: refuse to speak for yourself.

tryska: mangoes are widely reputed as likely to give

you rashes, allergies, acne, you name it.

According to indian medical traditions, they heat the body too much.

milagai

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Mongo, apologies, but I'm curious, is it really that hard to get good mangoes outside India?

Anyway, that point apart, how good or bad are the mangos you get where you live?

Vikram

vikram,

bhelpuri has filled you in on the sad story of our exile from mango-heaven here in babylon. i smile a bitter smile every time someone who has never eaten indian mangoes raves about mangoes in the u.s: you who have never seen the moon, i say to myself, how exciting it is for you to see a frisbee sail through the night sky.

however, it is possible to get fairly good filipino mangoes--tiny, orange things with small seeds (not entirely unlike our daseri). in los angeles these were available at the farmer's market (the branded one on fairfax and third), and i've heard rumors that there are places in denver as well where they can occasionally be found. i've also heard tell, or read in a novel, that jamaican mangoes are very good too--but that the ones that make it to the u.s aren't good at all (this is reported in michelle cliff's 80s novel Abeng).

now, if the united fruit company owned a bunch of mango plantations in india you can be sure the fda might change its tune...

mongo

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I developed an allergy to mangoes last year after a week-long orgy of too cheap mangoes led me to have two a day with the juice dripping down my chin as I turned the skins inside out to get the last bits. Foodie 52 told me that some of the Central Market produce handlers can't touch the whole fruits without latex gloves. I recently had a minor outbreak after sampling some slices at CM. Now I'll have to experiment with carefully placing the slice in my mouth without allowing the juice to smear my lips. Wonder why the allergy only shows up on my face - not inside my mouth?

Tryska,does mango sorbet affect you in the same manner as fresh mango?

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i believe that those who have developed allergic reactions to mangoes are being punished by whatever divinity (or television personality) they worship. penance may help, and may take the form of sending me money, or even better, smuggling me a case of assorted langdas, daseris and alphonsos.

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One day when i was about 17 or 18, i ate one of these mangoes in the usual way, and my lips swoll up and were very itchy.  Since then i haven't bene able to eat mangoes unless i score all the flesh off the skin, and take good care to wash my mouth with soap as soon as i am finished.

Kidding aside, I have seen other people having the same allergic reaction you are talking about.

Some mangoes have this sticky secretion which oozes out from the stem end. I am not sure, but I think that secretion is actually what causes the allergic reaction.

What would I not give for a ripe Langra.

I hear the mango bounty in Bengal this year as well as the last has been especially good.

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Mango is so good that it should be called Khaas (Special) rather than Aam (regular). :biggrin:

Talking about mangoes also reminds me of a very good scene from the old Mirza Ghalib movie (Bharat Bhushan one) where he is eating a bunch of mangoes with a bunch of guys and this guy who does not like Ghalib says "Yeh to gadhe bhi nahin khaate" (Even donkeys don't eat it).. As to which Ghalib replies "Haan, sirf gadhe hi nahi khaate" (Yes, only donkeys don't eat it)

As Bhelpuri mentioned, due to FDA rules, we do not get Alphonsos in USA. However I have seen and used mango pulp cans some of which say Alphonso. I do not remember the brand right now but will check next time at my local desi store.

The 2 things that we have tried with with those are Mango Pie and Mango Lassi. Yum Yum Yum!!!

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Mango is so good that it should be called Khaas (Special) rather than Aam (regular). :biggrin:

Talking about mangoes also reminds me of a very good scene from the old Mirza Ghalib movie (Bharat Bhushan one) where he is eating a bunch of mangoes with a bunch of guys and this guy who does not like Ghalib says "Yeh to gadhe bhi nahin khaate" (Even donkeys don't eat it).. As to which Ghalib replies "Haan, sirf gadhe hi nahi khaate" (Yes, only donkeys don't eat it)

As Bhelpuri mentioned, due to FDA rules, we do not get Alphonsos in USA. However I have seen and used mango pulp cans some of which say Alphonso. I do not remember the brand right now but will check next time at my local desi store.

The 2 things that we have tried with with those are Mango Pie and Mango Lassi. Yum Yum Yum!!!

i am one of those people who believes that mangoes are best eaten by themselves. while i am not opposed to mango sorbet (still pure mango), i am not a fan of mango lassis, pies etc.

god, i'm flashing back to my boarding school days and school-sanctioned mango eating contests. i believe the winners regularly went through 30-35 at a time. the most i ever managed was about 15. even the terrible stomach-upsets (rendered even more terrifying by the monstrous toilets in water-scarce darjeeling) were worth it.

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i am one of those people who believes that mangoes are best eaten by themselves. while i am not opposed to mango sorbet (still pure mango), i am not a fan of mango lassis, pies etc.

Mongo,

I agree, but will add that you must eat by hands to enhance the taste. The south American variety just does'nt cut it.

We need Chausa, Dusheheri, Langda, Alphonso, Sunehri..... here... now!!!

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yes, the only civilized way to eat a mango is to grab it with both hands, rip the skin off the narrower end off with your teeth and squeeze the flesh and juice into your mouth, pausing only to wipe drippings off your chin and lips and to lick your hands. if you aren't yet at this phase of evolution you may be satisfied with cutting a mango into 3 pieces--one slice on either side of the seed (aanthi, in bengali) and the seed itself with some flesh attached. if you are an indian and go in for peeling and dicing of mangoes into dainty little cubes, well then you need some re-education therapy.

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