The other day my daughter-in-law Kaitlyn and I were working on putting together a recipe for a post that involved cutting up a mango. Sadly, neither one of us had any idea how to do it. Luckily, our friend Anna, who helps us out with photography on occasion, has spent a LOT of time in Peru where they eat a LOT of mangoes. She learned how to cut a mango from watching and learning the Peruvian cooks there and agreed to share their technique with us.
Interestingly enough, when you search for how to cut a mango, almost every single article that comes up shows a different technique that involves cross-hatching the mango flesh while it’s still inside the skin and then cutting it out in cubes. After watching Anna’s way of doing it I think it’s MUCH easier!
This is how you cut a mango the Peruvian way:
First, let me make it perfectly clear, I think mangoes are super awkward to cut! The main thing you need to know before attempting this is that there is a large flat stone pit in the center that you have to cut around.
Start by placing the mango on a flat surface (you might want to do it on a plate to catch the juice).
Holding the mango vertically, take a sharp knife and slice it lengthwise along either side of the stone pit. In fruit-cutting lingo this is referred to as cutting off the “cheeks” of the mango.
Now we’re going to borrow a page from the book on “how to cut up an avocado” and scoop out the flesh with a spoon.
That’s it! Now you can lay it flat side down on the board and cut it into any shape you’d like. Cubed, or sliced….it’s ALL delicious!
P.S. Mango etiquette mandates that the fruit left around the stone pit is to be noshed on while preparing your recipe.
I leave you with a little mango trivia:
- The mango is the national fruit of India, Pakistan and the Philippines.
- Mango trees live a long time….some trees still bear fruit after 300 years.
- In several cultures, its fruit and leaves are ritually used as floral decorations at weddings, public celebrations and religious ceremonies.
- The United Nations estimates worldwide production at nearly 35 million tons. India is the biggest producer of mangoes.
How do YOU deal with unruly fruit??