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Selection, Ripening and Storage
Fresh mango at the right stage of ripeness is key to success when featuring mango on the menu.
When sourcing/ordering fresh mangos, be aware that you may need to ripen them onsite. The three stages of ripeness for mangos are unripe (green), ripe and fully ripe. Ripen mangos at room temperature – never refrigerate a mango until it has reached its desired ripeness.
NOTE: You will notice subtle differences in flavor and texture between varieties.
Unripe (green*) mangos:
- There are two types of unripe mangos: immature and mature. Their characteristics are similar.
- Skin is firm and tight when squeezed lightly.
- The stem end has very little or no aroma.
- Skin color, although not the best judge of ripeness, might be more green and/or dull.
- Flesh will be greener or light yellow, crisp in texture.
- Flavor will be tart or sour, with some sweet accents.
*Green refers to an unripe mango, not to a mango with green skin. Always use sense of touch to judge the ripeness of a mango.
- Skin should give a little when squeezed lightly but not leave an impression.
- The stem end might give off a tropical, sweet scent.
- Skin color, although not the best judge of ripeness, could turn from green to yellow or red.
- Flesh will be rich yellow/orange in most varieties, soft in texture.
- Flavor will be sweet, tropical.
- Ripe mangos can be refrigerated whole for up to a week, 2 to 3 days cut or pureed, and frozen up to 6 months cut or pureed.
Fully ripe mangos:
- Skin should give significantly to the touch and could leave an impression.
- The stem end is likely to have a strong, sweet aroma.
- Skin color could be more red and yellow.
- Flesh will be rich yellow/orange, very soft texture.
- Flavor will be very sweet, tropical.
- Fully ripe mangos can be refrigerated whole for up to a week, 2 to 3 days cut or pureed, and frozen up to 6 months cut or pureed.