July 12, 2008
Mango Peeling and Cutting
In preparation for the mango festival, about a dozen volunteers gathered at the garden early Friday morning to peel and cut about 200 or so mangos. Some of the fruit was to be used for smoothies and some of it for bite-sized samples. Peeling and cutting for smoothies had already been going on in the Redlands at the Williams Grove facility a few weeks prior. Obviously, that fruit was frozen. Over 10,000 visitors were expected for the weekend, so it had to be done.
Peeling and cutting mangos is a very sloppy task, especially with some of the juicier varieties! The best part of the four-hour session, was, of course the opportunity to suck the pulp from the seeds, which is one tastiest experiences a mango lover can enjoy. The "champagne" mango was simply delectable. The scent of mangos filled the classroom building, prompting many staff members to stop by the room with smiles on their faces.
We didn't have to be too fussy about preparing pulp for smoothies, but the fruit samples had to be cut precisely into square shapes. One of the volunteers had the technique down pat. If you're going to slice mangos at home, here's how to do it. Using a flat-edged knife, slice off the rounded edge of the stem point, then peel the mango. From the sliced-off end, cut some longitudinal lines all the way to the bottom of the mango. Follow with latitudinal lines in the desired size. Then simply slice the squares from as close to the seed as possible. Repeat on the second side and cut any remaining flesh off the edges of the seed.
My friend Bohopoetgirl was covered in mango! See fruit-slicing technique at the end of the video.