Tropical fruits are a huge part of the diet in Mexico, where large quantities of mangos are grown, making them one of the most delicious exports of the country. Although the yummy fruit dates back more than 6,000 years, the mango did not originate in Mexico. Rather, it was introduced to Mexico by the Spanish who brought several varieties native to the Philippines in 1779 via the Chinese Empire. Currently, mango crops represents 16.5% of Mexico’s agricultural production.
There are at least 6 varieties of mangos including the Ataulfo, Irwin, Kent and Manila grown in the area of Banderas Bay, where Hotel Mousai and Garza Blanca Preserve Resort & Spa are located, meaning you can enjoy several types while on vacation in Banderas Bay. Typically weighing between 200 and 800 grams, there are mangos that will satisfy every craving from super sweet, to green and tart, to soft and mushy.
How to eat a mango
Not surprisingly, in a place with such a plentiful supply of mangos, there are nearly endless ways to enjoy this tasty, vitamin-filled fruit. Here are some of the top picks for eating mango in Mexico and beyond.
Mango on a Stick – You can find several types of mango sold right on the beach by friendly vendors. You might even have the chance to purchase a mango carved so beautifully that you may find it difficult to eat it because you don’t want to ruin it. Of course, you can order the mango straight up in its natural form with nothing added, or if you want to get the true Mexican experience, you can order it with chile powder. The vendor will gladly coat the mango with dried chile piquin powder and salt before dousing it with lime juice squeezed over the top for a unique explosion of flavor.
Mango in a Cup – Although the thought of eating a mango before it is soft and ripe may have never crossed your mind, eating them this way is a favorite snack in Mexico. Street vendors sell them peeled, cut into strips and served in cups or bags for the ultimate on-the-go food. Again, it is common to add dried red chile and lime juice for a tangy flavor with a kick. If you’re not a big fan of sour fruit, be sure you make it clear you want a mango that is ripe when ordering.
Mango au Natural – If you like your fruit as simple and straightforward as possible, go to a local fruit market or grocery store and get to peeling. The task is quite easy, it just happens to get a bit sticky and juicy! Try to cut the sides off into quarters and remove any excess left behind around the pit. You can also cut off the sides that are plumpest and dig the mango out with a spoon.
Mango Salad – Salads love mango, be it unripe or juicy and sweet. Green mango chunks make a great addition to just about any sweet or savory salad to punch up the flavor, while soft mature mangos are often used in fruit salads and salad dressings.