Think of those joyful moments when you relished the sweet and fleshy mango with the juice trickling down your elbow. Yes, we are talking about the king of fruits, mango here. As the tempting whiff of this fruit wafts through let us have a look at some of the popular varieties and what makes them so irresistible. As the largest producer of mangoes in the world, India is home to different varieties of this juicy fruit.
Each variant has its unique taste, aroma, and shape. From the beak-shaped Totapuri to the famous Ratnagiri Alphonso or Malda from Bihar, we have dominated the world markets with some wow-inspiring varieties. Here is a look at some of the mangoes we would love to grab this season.
It is also known as Hapus, Badami, or Kesar. A world favourite, Alphonso boasts of rich sweetness with a fleshy interior. Hailed as the king of mangoes, this variant is named after a Portuguese General who aided in establishing Portuguese colonies. It was the Portuguese who pioneered the way to grafting mango trees and harvesting Alphonso. Possessing a beautiful saffron hue, Alphonso is one of the most expensive varieties of mango. It has an average size and is known for its excellent flavour.
Alphonso is grown mainly in Western India specifically in the Konkan belt of Raigad, Ratnagiri, Devgarh, and Sindhudurg. It is actually a cultivar (especially cultivated variant) and the fruit of this variety is medium in size and orange-yellow in colour. Unparalleled in its aroma and taste, Alphonso is mainly exported and holds a huge promise for foreign income. It also has its own unique varieties. However, the best and most expensive are hand-harvested and cultivated in Ratnagiri. This variety is mainly sold as a fresh fruit but is also popular in the canned version.
This king of fruits consists of several beneficial plant compounds and is loaded with phytochemicals, polyphenols, vitamins A and C, carotenoids, antioxidants, omega-3, and 6.
A good source of antioxidants and iron, these fruits are great for pregnant women, anaemic, and heart patients. Regular consumption of mangoes can also improve bowel movements and digestion.
Its creamy juicy pulp lends itself to delectable ice cream or soufflé. You can enjoy them with a few fresh slices of fruit. Do not forget aam-ras and puri which are not only famous but also thoroughly enjoyable. You can also have a divine mango lassi or sorbet on a hot summer day.
The beak-shaped mango or ‘Totapuri’ mango is also called Ginimoothi, Ginimooth, or Maavina Kayi which means parrot beak curve. It has several other names such as Kallamai, Sandarsha, Bangalora, Kili Mooku, and so on. Grown for its pulp and commercial potential, it has a thick yellow-greenish skin and is medium in size. A cultivar, this variant is grown in South India Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu. It is also grown in Sri Lanka.
The trees of Totapuri have a short trunk and dark green leaves that are broad. The oblong-shaped fruit hangs in a bunch or individually. The pulp of Totapuri is derived by processing and passing it through a sieve for commercial purposes.
Hence it is no surprise that this variant is rich in vitamin A and C. It is also rich in anti-oxidants. The other health benefits of this variety include:
Improves eye health
The beta-carotene and vitamin A enhance the functioning of the retina.
Promotes brain health
Iron in the mango along with vitamin B6 aid in its cognitive development.
Helps maintain sodium
As it is packed with potassium it helps balance sodium. It also acts as a tonic to restore and combat heat stroke.
It promotes bone health, prevents heart illness, and aids digestion. The fiber in Totapuri mango elevates constipation. Apart from preventing asthma the vitamin C and zinc, it boosts immunity. This variant is also known to reduce the risk of kidney stones because of vitamin B6 and potassium it contains.
Totapuri boasts of an appetizing and delicate flavour and has a sweet note which is not too strong. It is used in delicious salads and other dishes because of its acidic nature. Another great way of relishing it is by tempering the pulp with salt and adding a dash of lime. Make chutneys, pickles, or jams, and enjoy your summers with some healthy delicacies.