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Ingredient Tue Apr 21 2009


Cheaper every yearI literally skipped with glee between my bus stop and Patel Brothers, 2610 W. Devon Ave., this evening after work because I heard that there would be cases filled glorious, individually protected and delicious Alphonse Mangoes. Yep, even though it was only 40 degrees and it was raining, as far as I'm concerned it is officially spring because my personal heaven-with-a-pit has landed stateside.

This isn't the first time that I've written about Indian mangoes and what an amazing joy they are to eat. I was worried that I may not get to experience the fresh mango this year due to a possible low yield. But thankfully there are at least some making it to the States, and they're $25 for a case of a dozen mangoes. Two years ago it was $36 a case and last year I paid $30.66 a case. And yes, a box of mangoes from Mexico will set you you back $6, but trust me when I say these mangoes are at least four times as tasty as the Mexican and Filipino varieties that can be found year-round.

Each year the mangoes have tasted different. And each mango in a box has different flavor notes, and -- oh, and this is totally my favorite part -- the ends of the mango often taste very different. This particular variety is affected by how cold it gets and for how long during a critical ripening stage. This year the ripest parts of the mangoes I've tried so far have had a very floral and sweet fruity taste, while the slightly less ripe end had a slightly salty taste with a firm texture that almost reminded me of a cheddar cheese that had been infused with flowers. I'm resisting the urge to go eat another instead of finishing writing.

So if you're interested in trying these mangoes, you better get them while the getting is good. And while you're at Patel Brothers picking up a case of mangoes, may I suggest grabbing some boxes of Swad Micro-Curry? These $.99 boxes of pre-made vegetarian Indian dishes are ready to heat and pour over rice. Not only are they wickedly cheap and tasty, but there are no preservatives added. You may want to watch out for the sodium content, but seriously for pre-made food, they're totally awesome. You'll also want to check out their fresh house-made pickle buffet or their barrels of snacks. There is a line every time I'm there, but it's a great way to taste a variety of things in small amounts and for very little money. And saving money on your microwave curry lunch with fresh pickle will just make it easier to justify spending $2 on each mango.


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Christian / April 23, 2009 3:25 PM

So great! We went over to Patel Brothers and picked up a case yesterday and they are as delicious as you say. Thanks for the tip!

Cinnamon / April 24, 2009 1:25 AM

So glad you like them, Christian. They truly are one of the most amazing things I've put in my mouth. I'm hoping that Kesars come to Patel Brothers in a few weeks. I'll keep you posted.

adam / April 24, 2009 9:30 AM

You could not be more right. Totally unlike any other mango, like a mango lassi without the yogurt. Glad I finally watched a video on how to cut the things, after all these years. Thanks!

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
Read this feature »

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