How to store mangoes
Mango fruits are available for purchase all year round, and therefore they are rarely stored for future use in large quantities. But sweet and juicy tropical fruits are perishable products, which means they require certain conditions for storage right from the moment of purchase. There are simple ways to help you preserve your mango as a whole, under-ripe, or cut properly.
What fruits are suitable
It is a widespread misconception that the ripeness of a mango is determined by its color. In fact, ripe fruits can be orange, green or red. The shade depends on the variety. Ripe fruits are distinguished by a number of other characteristics:
- According to the outgoing rich pleasant aroma. In unripe fruits, it is either absent or very weak.
- By the elasticity of the peel. When lightly pressed with a fingertip on the fruit, the pulp lends itself slightly to pressure, without falling inward, and then immediately restores its original state. Fruits requiring ripening are very hard to touch.
- Regardless of the purpose of purchase (for quick use or long-term storage), the surface of the selected mangoes should not be damaged and rough, dents, brown or gray spots. The skin should be uniform, smooth, and the pulp itself should be uniform in color.
· Storage at room temperature
- At room temperature not higher than + 25 ° C, ripe fruits will retain their freshness and juiciness for 2-3 days. They can be put in a vase or kept on the table, the main thing is that they do not fall on direct sunlight and there are no products that emit ethylene (bananas, peaches, figs, peppers, tomatoes, etc.). At a higher temperature, the fruit may start to rot, and if the “neighborhood” is wrong, it will overripe in a few hours.
· In a refrigerator
- The best place to store your mango is in the fruit and vegetable compartment in the refrigerator. At a temperature of + 3 … + 5 ° С, fruits will stay for about 7-10 days without loss of properties. At the same time, it is advisable to wrap each fruit with plain clean paper or parchment.
- A plastic bag for storing mangoes is not suitable. An enclosed space without air circulation encourages condensation. This will quickly lead to product deterioration.
- If stored for a long time, the fruit should be inspected regularly. If suspicious spots or blotches are noticed on their surface, and the pulp has softened and emits a sharp sugary smell, then they must be disposed of. These are the main signs of decay. You cannot eat such fruits, you can get poisoning. If the fruit has just begun to deteriorate, the damaged areas on it must be removed, capturing a small part around them, and the rest used for its intended purpose.
It is necessary to wash the fruits only before use. If you neglect this rule, then the shelf life of mangoes will be significantly reduced.
If the fetus is immature
At home, unripe mango will not ripen at low temperatures. In the best case, it will remain in the same state, in the worst case, it will deteriorate.
It is better to keep unripe fruits in a dark and dry room with a room temperature of + 18 … + 24 ° С with a humidity of about 80%. Place the fruits in a cabinet or cardboard box so that they do not come into contact with each other, preferably wrapping each one with clean paper.
The ripening period for mango in this way will be about 3-7 days, depending on the initial ripeness. Fruits should be inspected regularly, removing spoiled ones. After ripening, store in the refrigerator.
To reduce the ripening time to 1-2 days, you can put fruits that emit ethylene (bananas, peaches, nectarines, figs, etc.) next to the unripe fruits. The same actions are used to ripen an avocado or a quince at home.
Cut mango will keep freshness for no more than 1 day. The pulp in this state loses its qualities and darkens, and how quickly this happens depends on the presence of a bone in it. If a bone is left in a half, then a smaller part of the pulp gets under the influence of air, and vice versa.
Store the cut fruit only in the refrigerator on the fruit shelf. The halves or slices are wrapped with cling film, put in bags with a zip-fastener or sealed containers (cut up). And in order to keep the mango in a presentable form, for example, for serving, then first sprinkle its slices with lemon (lime) juice or olive oil. This slows down the oxidation process slightly.
If any signs of spoilage appear (unpleasant odor, discoloration, consistency, etc.), the product becomes unusable for food. It only remains to throw it away.
Make sure the mango is ripe before you cut it open. An unripe fruit cut into pieces will quickly deteriorate at room temperature, and will not ripen in the refrigerator.
The shelf life of a mango is 2-3 months if frozen. The whole fruit is not frozen, most often it is cut into slices or crushed to a puree-like state.
The frozen pulp does not lose its taste. But with long-term storage, it loses some of the nutrients, and after defrosting it becomes looser and softer, which does not at all interfere with its use in baking or desserts.
How to freeze slices:
- Peel the mango, remove the pit. Cut the pulp into small pieces.
- Arrange the slices on a board or plate so that they do not touch each other. Cover with foil and send to the freezer for about an hour.
- After the frozen pieces are placed in an airtight plastic container or a bag with a zip fastener. Before closing the bag, let the air out of it.
- The preparatory steps are completed, you can send the workpiece for long-term storage.
Freezing chopped pulp:
- Peel the mango, remove the pit.
- Cut the pulp into small pieces. Grind them to the desired consistency in a blender, mash with a fork or crush.
- Divide the resulting gruel in portions into sealed containers or bags for freezing, release the air from the latter, close. Place in the freezer.
Before using, the mango must be removed from the freezer and allowed to defrost naturally in the refrigerator. The pulp, with this method of removing from the frozen state, retains its structure as much as possible, does not become watery and soft. Always defrost only the required amount of food. Re-freezing it is not permissible.
There are also alternative ways to store mangoes. They can be used if there are a lot of ripe fruits at home, which cannot be eaten in the next 2-3 days, and there is no place for them in the refrigerator. Among these methods are drying, soaking in sugar syrup, cooking jam, making marshmallows and marmalade.