When a dear colleague commented that he hadn’t seen me post for a while today, I knew that, no matter how tired I felt, I would rise to the challenge, albeit with a recipe that is short but sweet.
Going back 20 years to my student days, after a hard day at the library, I’d sit down with a cup of tea in front of a great little cooking show called Ready Steady Cook. For those who don’t remember it, 2 guests from the audience would spend a set amount, usually 5 pounds, on groceries, would be called up to the stage where 2 chefs awaited the contents of the bag. They would then have 20 minutes to make something from the ingredients and whatever else was in the well stocked store cupboard.
My memory may be playing tricks with me, but I seem to recall that any time a mango was amongst the goodies, a similar trick was employed – namely to apply spicy heat and then oven heat.
Mango is without doubt, my favourite fruit and it seems some of my readers too. My most clicked on post by a considerable way is Oven dried mango with chile and one of my first posts was Ottolenghi’s mango with eggplant and soba noodles which was on the menu this past week and was so spectacular that even my most vocal anti-Ottolenghi guest came back for more.
I got excited a little too early this year. I knew it was to good to be true but the mangoes looked really good in the shuk – the still sky high price should have been the give away! A couple of weeks later however and I’m buying yellow-pink blushing fruit, which gives slightly to the touch luring you with it’s beguiling aroma for 7 shekels a kilo!
This couldn’t be simpler – mango and chile are great friends, sweet and spice a winning combination and lots of summer fruit benefits from having their natural sugars caramelised with a quick blast of heat.
The origins of the recipe mean that this is quick and incredibly simple – perfect for when you’re shattered. The result is truly fantastic however – I’ll be doing these all summer long.
1 large Maya mango
1/2 tsp of chile powder (use more or less according to your taste)
Slice down on either side of the flattish stone and you should be left with two large “cheeks of fruit” and a stone to nibble on (Cook’s treat).
Cross hatch the mango with a sharp knife, being careful not to pierce the skin. Then push the skin to pop the flesh out.
Sprinkle chile powder over the top and then pop it under a preheated grill for about 5 minutes, keeping an eye so they don’t burn
It’s that simple!!