sweet and succulent with history
I have eaten mangoes from the time I remember as a young kid in Hyderabad, India. Three were the interests of the summer holidays – mangoes, detective stories, and cricket. I’ll talk about mangoes.
The season is in full swing in India. Right from the middle of April to June. My mom pickles the fresh raw green ones. As big as a pear. They have a awesome tangy flavor. It is a ritual in every household in south India that you gather with your relatives and pickle them. My mom’s eldest sister – my mom is the youngest child born to my granddad. The age difference is around 15 years, would come over and it is a day long process. At last at the end of the day the dishes with the reminder of masalas and ohhh heavenly, would be wiped clean with white rice. God bless them.
Now, I have always dreamt of a food vacation – and the Hindu business line has one such village. In Rataul village in Uttar Pradesh’s Baghpat district.
Pic : source
“What is known, however, is that when Sheikh Mohd Afaq Faridi returned to the village after completing his inter college in 1905, he noticed this mango tree in its infancy near one of the farms. He asked a gardener to graft the plant, and in a year’s time, four mango trees sprouted. Thus began the young boy’s love affair with mangoes.”
“Years later, Afaq Faridi resigned from his job and devoted his life to this ‘sweet mission’.
After his marriage, he set up a mango nursery christened Shohra-e-afaq in 1928 and got it registered in 1935. He named this mango variety Anwar Rataul, now popularly known simply as the Rataul mango.”
And here is Mr.. Steve Parle’s article in the telegraph.
Early in the season (which starts in mid-March), alphonso mangoes are prohibitively expensive. I stretch them out by serving only half a mango, with a glass of chilled, spiced, sweetened milk: a beautiful combination
Source for the top picture is here