Mango season is approaching soon. I love mangoes , so I thought why not learn and gain knowledge about the most loved fruit. So presenting Mango – The King Of Fruits.
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The Mango is juicy fruit in which an outer part (skin or the outermost part), surrounds a shell of hardened layer which is inside the fruit and directly surrounds the seeds. It belongs to genus Mangifera (scientific name for Mango), consisting of numerous tropical fruiting trees. It is mostly cultivated for edible fruit. The mango is naive to South Asia, from where it is distributed all around the globe and has become one of the most cultivated fruit.
The center of origin and the maximum variety is in India. It is the national fruit of India, Pakistan and Philippines and the national tree of Bangladesh.
Mango trees grow up to 35-40 m tall. These trees have a long life. According to the researchers, there are some varieties which fruit even after 300 years. The tree remains green all throughout the year. The leaves are simple and broad. Young leaves are orange-pink in color, as they mature the color changes to dark and glossy red and finally dark green.
There are over 400 varieties of mangoes which are known. The fruit takes 3-6 months to ripen. The ripe fruit varies in size, color and taste.
Grouping of mango plants are selected for desirable characteristics that can be maintained by the process of creating new plants from seeds and grafting. This results mango in variety of colors such as yellow, red, orange, green and many more.
List of few varieties known:
i. Julie – A variety in Jamaica
j. Tommy Atkins – A variety in Florida
k. Sindhri – A variety from Sindh in Pakistan
Mangoes have been cultivated in South Asia for thousands of years. It reached East Asia between 4 century BC to 5 century BC. By 10th century AD , mangoes were cultivated in East Africa. Few centuries later cultivation started in Brazil, Bermuda, West Indies and Mexico.
Almost half of world’s mangoes are cultivated in India alone. Today China is the second largest source. Other cultivators are Spain, California, Central America, the Caribbean, Hawaii, Central Africa, Australia, Pakistan, South Korea, Bangladesh and South East Asia.
India is the largest producer of mango, but has less than 1% of international trade as it is consumed most in India.
Mango is widely used in culinary world and for cultural and religious purposes as listed:
a. Mangoes are widely used in cuisine. Sour, unripe mangoes are used in pickles, chutneys and even as drink called as Aam Panna. Mango pulp is also cooked with dal and is served with cooked rice in South India.
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b. They are used in preservatives such as murrabba , amchur, pickles, etc.
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c. They are used to make syrups, juices, smoothies, milkshakes, ice creams, pies and many other things.
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Cultural and Religious uses:
a. Jain Goddess Ambika is traditional seen as sitting under mango trees.
b. In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha holds a perfect ripe mango as symbolizing attainment. Mango leaves are widely used in poojas.
c. Mango motifs and paisleys are widely used in Indian embroidery styles.
I have written articles for Food Bloggers Association of India. To read more click here.
I enjoyed researching on the most loved fruit. I hope you all too enjoyed reading and knowing about it too. Coming soon with an article on varieties of Mango! Stay tuned!!!