Raise your hand if you love mangoes, but they’ve always intimidated you! Up until a few weeks ago, I would have raised my hand.
Every time I’ve had mango in a restaurant, I’ve loved it to bits. But I always passed it over in the supermarket – a funny foreign ingredient that I’d never use effectively. How wrong I was!
A lovely box of all sorts of mangoes arrived courtesy of the National Mango Board, and the smell alone led me down the path of google searches galore searching for recipes.
To start off, let’s talk about how easy it is to cut up a mango, once you know how. Watch this quick video for several ways to do it:
We ate plenty of the mangoes simply diced as a side dish to our meals, and then there was that Mango Chicken stir fry that was so good, there was nothing left to photograph.
Staring down the last two mangoes from the case, much like the black bananas hanging out in their own kitchen corner, I knew that I should put them to good use. I decided that mango puree must be a lot like mashed banana, and so adapted the same bread recipe I was already making with the bananas for a second batch of mango bread.
Adding in cardamom and hazelnuts took these mini loaves to a tropical, slightly Indian direction. They’re a wonderful switch up from the standard quick bread picks, and the texture of the mini loaves is delicious.
The next time I make them, I’m going to swap in brown sugar instead of white sugar, because I think mango pairs better with the deeper molasses flavors. I’ve written the recipe below as the bread was made, but I suggest you try it with an equivalent amount of brown sugar instead.
In case you’ve never purchased mangoes for yourself, let’s talk about how to pick them:
- Don’t focus on color. It is not the best indicator of ripeness.
- Squeeze the mango gently. A ripe mango will give slightly.
- Use your experience with produce such as peaches or avocados, which also become softer as they ripen.
- Ripe mangos will sometimes have a fruity aroma at their stem ends.
- The red color that appears on some varieties is not an indicator of ripeness. Always judge by feel.
Information provided by The National Mango Board
Variety is the spice of life, y’all. It’s always awesome to add a new ingredient to your life, and I hope you’re encouraged to try mango at home now too.
Mini Mango Hazelnut Cardamom Bread
adapted from Chiquita Bananas
For the Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup shortening
2 large eggs
2 ripe mangoes, pureed
1/2 cup diced hazelnuts (optional)
For the Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk or half and half
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the Bread
Preheat the oven to 350°F
Spray the baking pan with cooking spray.
Combine the flour, baking soda, kosher salt and ground cardamom together in a small bowl and whisk to combine and aerate.
Slice and scoop the mango flesh into a bowl (watch the video for how to do this easily), and then use an immersion blender to puree. You can also use a food processor or blender to do this if you don’t have an immersion blender.
In a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine sugar and shortening and beat on medium-high until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each addition until fully incorporated.
Add the pureed mango and mix again until well incorporated.
Add the flour mixture and mix on low or by hand until just combined. Add the hazelnuts and stir again, just until well distributed.
Using a large spoon from your silverware set, scoop 2 spoonfuls into each well of the baking pan. Bake for 22 minutes.
Allow to cool in the pan until the pan is handle-able, then press from the bottom of the pan to eject the loaves from the pan.
For the Glaze
In a small bowl, add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and milk or half and half. Whisk together until all sugar is completely dissolved.
Use a pastry brush to brush the glaze on top of the bread – Chiquita recommends doing this while the bread is still warm, but I did it when it was at room temperature and it worked out fine.
Disclaimer: I was provided with a case of Mangoes by the Mango Board. I was not asked to write this post, nor was I compensated for it. All opinions are my own.[wpurp-searchable-recipe]Mini Mango Hazelnut Cardamom Bread – – – [/wpurp-searchable-recipe]