Every year the annual arrival of boxes filled with mangoes from India is eagerly awaited by South Asians globally! The mango will forever be a sweet reminder of my dual upbringing in a British household and Indian roots, and I hope you enjoy making this recipe! It's perfect for the hot summer days and is super quick to make.
Here, we'll be using Kesar mangoes which are only grown in Gir, an area in Junagadh, Gujarat, India. The Gir region is known for its ideal climatic conditions, including hot summers and cool winters, contributing to the unique flavour and quality of the Kesar mango. The taste and texture is influenced by the soil, weather, and other geographical factors. This also mean that the Kesar mango has a relatively short season, typically from May to July, which makes it a highly sought-after mango variety both in India and globally.
It is renowned for its distinct taste, aroma and vibrant saffron coloured flesh. It has a rich, sweet, and luscious flavour with a perfect balance of sweetness and tanginess. With hints of tropical notes that sets it apart from other mango varieties.
You will be able to find Kesar mangoes at an Asian-convenience store typically starting from May up until July. But be quick as demand always seems to outstrip supply!
BENEFITS OF MANGOES:
Nutrient-rich: Mangoes are packed with essential nutrients, including vitamins A, C, E, and K. They also provide a good amount of dietary fiber, potassium, and various B vitamins.
Antioxidant properties: Mangoes are rich in antioxidants, such as flavonoids and polyphenols, which help protect the body against oxidative stress and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
Immune system support: The high vitamin C content in mangoes strengthens the immune system, promoting a healthy immune response and protecting against infections and illnesses..
Digestive health: The dietary fibre content in mangoes aids in digestion and helps prevent constipation. Mangoes also contain enzymes that assist in breaking down proteins and improving digestion.
Skin health: The vitamin C and other antioxidants present in mangoes contribute to healthy skin by promoting collagen synthesis, which helps maintain skin elasticity and prevents signs of aging.
Heart health: Mangoes are low in saturated fat and cholesterol while being a good source of dietary fiber and potassium. Consuming mangoes as part of a balanced diet may help support heart health and reduce the risk of heart disease.
Hydration: Mangoes have a high water content, making them a hydrating fruit choice, especially during hot weather or periods of physical activity.
HOW TO PICK MANGOES:
Check the colour of the mango's skin: vibrant colours and no signs of dark spots or bruising. Not too green as it would be unripe.
Assess firmness: Gently squeeze the mango to assess its firmness. A ripe mango should have a slight give when squeezed, similar to a ripe peach or avocado.
Consider aroma: Smell the stem end of the mango. A ripe mango will have a sweet and fragrant aroma. If you can detect a pleasant, fruity scent, it indicates that the mango is likely ripe and flavourful.
Check the texture: Run your fingers over the mango's skin to feel for any irregularities or soft spots. The skin should be smooth and without any signs of wrinkling or shrivelling.
INDIAN KESAR MANGO SMOOTHIE RECIPE:
- 2 ripe mangoes, peeled and diced
- 1 cup milk (you can use dairy or non-dairy milk)
- 1 tablespoon honey or jaggery (adjust to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/4 teaspoon ground saffron (optional)
- Fresh mint leaves (for garnish, optional)
- Chopped pistachios (for garnish, optional)
- Start by peeling and dicing mangoes, discarding the pit.
- In a blender, add the diced mangoes, milk, honey or jaggery, ground cardamom, saffron (if using).
- Blend the ingredients until smooth and creamy. If the consistency is too thick, you can add more milk or water.
- Taste the smoothie and adjust the sweetness or spices accordingly.
- Once blended, pour the mango smoothie into serving glasses.
- Garnish with fresh mint leaves and chopped pistachios for an extra touch of flavour and texture.
- Serve the mango smoothie immediately and enjoy the refreshing and tropical flavours!
You can also add a few ice cubes while blending if you prefer a chilled smoothie.
Enjoy! 🍹🥭 ☀️
Blog cover photo by Shameel Mukkath