Nina’s Tips & Techniques: Summer Salad featuring Mangoes

How do I know if my mango is ripe?

There are so many varieties of mangoes, each with different colored skin so touch and smell are your best cues for ripeness. I choose a mango that is very soft and smells fragrant through the skin. Mangos have a confusing stage right before they are really ripe when they are soft not but juicy. I always give them 1-2 days past when they feel soft to the touch. Think over-ripe avocado…that’s just perfect!

How do I cut this thing? There is a HUGE pit
in the middle!

Mango pits are large and flat – sort of like a saucer that sits right in the center. Unlike most fruits and veggies that we are used to cutting in half, a mango should get cut on either side of the pit. Start by trimming the top and bottom off the mango so you have a nice flat surface to set it on. If you cut deep enough you should very slightly slice the tip of the pit and be able to see it peeking out of one end. It will look like a white line in the center of the yellow flesh. Use this as your guide. Set the mango on end. Align your knife so it is parallel with the pit, then cut down along the side of the pit making a slight arc with your knife. Want your mango pieces peeled? Use a soft skin peeler (serrated) to peel before you slice!

Featured Recipe: Forbidden Black Rice Salad with Mango and Salted Peanuts