I decided to go to the St. Lawrence Market for my fruit hunter blog entry. The reason I decided to go to this particular market was because of the history i have with it, its a place I’ve gone every Saturday since i was a young boy and I have some really fond memories of it. I also thought since it was such a large market with many different vendors, that it would increase the likely hood of finding a fruit that i haven’t tried before. Especially right now when its sort of a awkward stage in the seasons, we have seen the last of the stone fruits, we are moving into the local apples and should start seeing a lot of the different varieties of citrus hitting the market soon.
The rational behind why i decided to pick the altufo mango was because when i think of things that are new and exciting in terms of fruit i often think of exotics. One of the more common exotic fruits are mangoes and little did i know there are a tone of varieties outside of the one many of us know as the red mango. I was walking around many of the different stalls and saw many traditional fruits and stumbled upon this unusually shaped yellow fruit that caught my eye. One thing that has always intrigued when it comes to food is how different fruits and vegetables from the same family can be so different and that as well lead me to picking the altufo mango.
A little bit of history behind where the altufo mango came from all starts in Mexico during the 1950s. “The Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (Instituto Mexicano de la Propiedad Industrial) granted the designation of origin of this fruit to the government of Chiapas” (AF). It is said that Mr. Ataulfo Morales bought some land that had some mango trees already on it and then later Hector Cano Flores actually discovered these particular mango.”In 1958 the agronomist Hector Cano Flores (the discoverer of Ataulfo Mango), Head of Sector of the Mexican Coffee Institute, began to do research.” (AF) The altufo mango specifically goes in Mexico but is also very similar a mango that they grow in china as well. All mangos stem from the same botanical family which is the “Anacardiaceae, the sumac family of flowering plants in the order Sapindales, with about 70 genera and 650 species of evergreen or deciduous trees, shrubs, and woody vines. It is native to tropical and subtropical areas of the world, but a few species occur in temperate regions.” (EB). In terms of ideal season to be consuming the altufo mangoes that is between March and July but you are able to get the altufo mangoes year round. Which leads into the price of them, the ones i got from the market were 3 for $5 dollars or $2 dollars each. Given this time of year it is a good deal but you will notice that they are smaller when they are out of season these were pack 20, in the ideal growing season you can see pack 12’s which are much larger.
Sensory evaluation of the altufo mango, when you see the yellow flesh you aren’t sure what to think and then you smell the outside of it and there isn’t any smell on the smooth skin.The first thing you notice when you cut into these mangoes is there isn’t a lot of fruit on them they have a very large seed in the middle. Yet the second you cut into them the sweet, slightly acidic smell comes oozing out of it, personally that smell brings me back to tropical vacations. The sound even when you cut into the mango is a crunch like you are breaking something that is firm, yet when you bite into there is no sound its so soft and delicate. The first thing i noticed when i opened the mango was how different it was from the red mango, the altufo mango has very little if any fibrous texture it’s so smooth. I also noticed that the juice that came off the knife after cutting it had a slight creaminess to it. I think thats why when you touch it its very hard to hold onto the cut pieces of fruit because it’s so smooth and moist/creamy. The mangos i choice were slightly under ripe in certain sections, which gave a certain contrast when it tasting. The unripe section had very little taste almost slightly bitter, where as the ripe pieces from the moment you placed them in your mouth you taste sweetness but it starts out very mellow and grows as you chew it and expose more of it to your mouth. This mango has a very refreshing taste to it and it’s surpsing how different it is from the red mangos.
I don’t think i would ever use any heat methods for cooking mango i think the use of mango should be light, refreshing, and sweet. I like having mango salad on the side of something that is very spicy to help cool the tongue from the heat, mango should be a strong complimentary flavour. Yet in my favourite dish to have mango in is a sorbet, mango has such a strong flavour that i can hold its own alone and doesn’t need any help. Growing up my mom use to make a sorbet for me with mango and here is the recipe for that.
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
3 large mangoes diced.
juice of my lemon
juice of one orange.
In a sauce pan combine the water and sugar then set aside to cool. place all the mango in a food processor until it is completely smooth. Mix the sugar water, mango puree and citrus juice in a ice cream machine. Allow to freeze for 1 hour before serving.
What i have taken from this experience is that its really important to go to market during different seasons and explore whats in season and try things you haven’t seen before. As someone who is a aspiring cook i think its important to try new things constantly and build that flavour reference. It’s also very inspiring going to the market and seeing how pretty the produce looks and to want to make dishes out of the stuff. We are so lucky to be in a city that has so many different cultures depending on which market you end up at you can find such diversity.
Anacardiaceae | plant family. (n.d.). Retrieved October 29, 2015.
Mango. (n.d.). Retrieved October 29, 2015, from http://adrianasfarms.com/descripcion-mango.php
Thomas, C. (2006). Melissa’s great book of produce: Everything you need to know about fresh fruits and vegetables (pp. 60-62). Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley.