The trick is in the Mango cheeks. If Mango is one of your favourite seasonal fruits, you definitely want to present this sweet treat in a beautiful way. One option is to cut off the cheeks, cut them into a grid and open them up, like a flower.
Who connected us?! Our family is crazy about traveling to South East Asia, and Mango is one of those fruits that are served plenty. Like pineapple and melons, you can get your mango freshly prepared at Asian markets like a work of art.
For the best results, start with a ripe, but still slightly firm Mango. When the Mango is too ripe and soft, you will end up with a mushy mess, that is hard to cut into.
- The Mango cheeks
Cut away the Mango cheeks. The Mango has a flat-ish oblong pit in the centre, and you want to cut around that. The pit follows the shape of the Mango itself, so you place the Mango on its smaller side, the side it wants to roll off when you don’t hold it. It’s best to cut from the widest and more flat sides of the mango first to obtain the most flesh.
Hold the Mango with one hand and position the knife adjacent to the centre of the stem, cut along the sides of the pit. Cut off both cheeks.
2. Scoring a grid into the Mango cheeks
Scoring the flesh. You want to create a grid, by making slices in the Mango cheeks, but not all the way trough. You push the point of your knife into the flesh until you feel the skin and start running the knife without cutting the skin. Hold the cheek with one hand and run the knife with the other. Turn the Mango 90 degrees and create a grid.
3. Unfolding into a beautiful piece of art
Once you have created your grid, take the cheek into your hands and push the flesh inside out. Use your fingers to push the flesh up and use your thumbs to push the sides of the cheeks down. Alternatively you can scoop out the cubes if you use them in a salad or something, but we love the fun of eating them of the skin.
You can cut the remaining Mango flesh from the pit or you can treat yourself by eating away the flesh from the pit. When you manage to cut the cheeks really close from the pit, there should not be much flesh left.
- When is your Mango ripe: You can check that your Mango is ripe in 2 ways. Firstly a ripe Mango will have a fruity aroma at their stem ends. Another way to know if your mango is ripe is by squeezing it gently. A ripe Mango will give slightly, indicating soft flesh inside. When your Mango is overripe, it will be hard to cut it beautifully, but your Mango will be a superb addition to a smoothy or sorbet.