Sunshine and mangoes


Sunshine and mangoes

LIENTJIE WESSELS remembers when mangoes were fibrous and didn't have much flesh. Today there is a variety to choose from — and recipes to share.


EVERYWHERE in supermarkets and greengrocers, towers of orange, gold and red mangoes are piled up in boxes. These are delicious mangoes and we have a much larger variety than years ago — Tommy Atkins, Zill, Sabre, Irwin, Kent, Shelley, Heidi, Sensation and many more. Each has its own characteristics and taste.

I remember a time when the available mangoes didn't have much flesh, were very fibrous and had a giant pit. It was quite a mess if you tried to eat it.

For reasons I don't quite understand, mangoes always tasted much better during our annual seaside holiday in Durban and on the South Coast — that lovely subtropical area of ​​South Africa with the smell of mangoes and coconut mixed with spices hanging seductively in the air and predicting fun in sun, sea and sand.

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In Hinduism, the mango is considered a sacred fruit and the mango tree the tree of life, or kalpavriksha. There is also the legend of Kamadeva, the God of love, who uses a bow and arrow made of mango wood to spark love.

There are more than 500 varieties of mangoes. Most are planted and eaten in India, where the late summer mango season is a big event. Mango is everything that is good in the country and is used even when it is green. You get dishes like masoor dahl cooked with green mango, and just think of the deliciousness of mango atchar, also made with green mangoes, here in South Africa.

Mangoes and India go hand in hand and they have been planted there for over 5,000 years, but no one is sure where the original mango came from. It is now planted everywhere in tropical and subtropical areas of South Africa, and it is thanks to the tropical weather that we can grow such delicious and a large variety of mangoes here.

Most people I know really love the taste of mangoes and we like to use them in food. On the internet there are recipes for mango chutney, mango and curry lamb chops, mango fridge pie and many more. For me, mango in a rice salad reminds me of my mother's rice salad with mango and chicken.

I want to share this recipe with you today. I had to think hard but I think I'm very close to my mother's lovely bersion. Then I also have a mango curd and a mango and avocado salad for your next fish braai or to serve with grilled chicken.

Mum’s rice salad with chicken and mango

(enough for six people)


  • 2 mangoes, cut into cubes
  • 3 cups cooked rice (I used brown rice)
  • 6 chicken breasts, diced and fried golden brown in a little olive oil, butter, braai salt and a splash of lemon juice
  • 2 large slices of roasted pumpkin of 200 g with skin and all, diced (with olive oil, salt and pepper)
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 50 ml cooked peas
  • 100 ml raisins
  • 100 ml peanuts
  • 80 ml sliced ​​spring onions
  • handful of chopped chives and parsley
  • salt & pepper
  • 100 ml white, creamy mayonnaise
  • 100 ml full-cream yoghurt
  • 50 ml cream
  • 1 tbsp medium curry powder
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed and finely chopped
  • splash of lemon juice


1. Mix mayonnaise, yoghurt, cream, curry powder, garlic and lemon juice for the dressing.

2. Mix the remaining ingredients together, add the dressing and sprinkle with parsley and spring onions.

Mango curd

Delicious on toast, with full-cream yoghurt or on ice cream.


  • ½ cup mango pulp
  • 4 large eggs (as fresh as possible)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 120 g butter


1. Make the mango pulp in a food processor.

2. Beat the butter and sugar together, add the eggs one at a time and keep beating.

3. Whisk the mango and lemon juice together and place everything in a small pot on a low heat. Keep stirring with a wooden spoon for 5 to 10 minutes. Do not let it boil. The mixture should stick to the wooden spoon and you should be able to draw a line through it with your finger. Then the spread is thick enough.

4. Allow to cool, place in a jar and use as needed (it will keep in the fridge for up to two weeks).


Mango and avocado salad


  • 6 cups salad, chopped
  • ½ cucumber, sliced
  • 2 medium avocados, diced
  • 2 medium mangoes, diced
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp honey
  • salt and pepper
  • 100 ml chopped coriander
  • ½ cup flaked almonds


1. Mix the salad ingredients.

2. Pour the olive oil, vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard and salt and pepper into a glass bottle, screw on the lid and shake until well mixed.

3. Pour over the salad and finish with almonds and coriander.


♦ VWB ♦

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