While June might bring intense humidity, mosquitos, and afternoon monsoons, the onslaught of mango season makes up for all the discomfort of summer in South Florida. When you drive around town and keep a watchful eye you’ll find these succulent green fruits ripening into reds and oranges all over our fair city. If you’re lucky, the branches might even hang low enough that you won’t need a fruit picker and can snare them by hand without having to climb the tree. Hopefully some day a tech wizard will create a mango app, clueing people in on where easy to access ripe mango trees might be.
I’m a little paranoid and uber careful to make sure there are no scratches or bites in the fruit for fear of catching avian or squirrel flu, but when you find an untouched fruit it’s awesome. They’re messy and if you don’t cut them right you’ll have strands stuck between your teeth all day, but if you throw away practicalities and concentrate just on flavor it’s hard to beat the mango.
I never got into the Cuban tradition of putting salt and chomping on unripened mangos. There was also a recipe in an Indian cookbook about a hot mango soup, but I’m a purist and a conservative. I like my mangos sweet. I like them gooey. and I like them staining the better part of my chin.