The Endless Meal – a notion embodies the way in our Kitchen. Always putting food away to be consumed at another time. Using the freezer. Preserving, pickling and fermenting. Dehydrating. Pre-cooking. And today, putting in a sugar syrup.
I come from a family where my mother and grandmother (and many before her, no doubt) “put up” vegetables and fruits in Spring, Summer and Autumn for consumption in later parts of the years. I still remember those bottled beans and cucumbers, and those sweet sugary preserved grapes that my grandmother used to make.
It is the time of year for mangoes! And it is so easy to keep that fresh yellowness, that intense flavour of mangoes by soaking them in a simple sugar syrup.
I am not one for sugary desserts as you know. But the temptation of visions of hot hot summer days, feeding my brood (friends and family) with icecream and sweet mango is definitely toooooo much to resist.
Mango in a Spiced Syrup
Source : Traditional in many cuisines
Prep time: 25 mins to make the syrup and prepare the mangoes, 30 mins to cool the syrup
Cooking time: 0 mins
Serves: makes enough to fill a 1l jar – lots of serves, depending on how you use it
1 litre water
1 kg white sugar
1 vanilla bean
1 small stick cinnamon
1 star anise
3 or 4 green pepper corns (optional)
you will need
1 jar of 1l capacity, or several jars whose combined volume is at least 1 litre
Split the vanilla bean in two lengthwise. Put the water, sugar and spices into a saucepan and simmer them for 15 minutes. Remove from the stove and allow the syrup to cool.
Clean the jars thoroughly – I run them through the dishwasher on the hot cycle to clean and sterilise.
Take the mangoes and slice off the largest cheek. Slice that cheek into 4 smaller strips. Take each strip and remove the skin. It is easiest to use a knife with a little flexibility, and slice close to the skin. I did it first on one side, then completed the removal of the skin on the other side. You can slice quite close to the skin in this way.
Remove the mango cheek from the other side of the mango. This one is smaller, so slice into 3, and remove the skin as above.
From the remaining 2 sides of the mango you will get 1 slice per side, and then cut off any small pieces left on the mango seed. Remove the skin from all pieces.
Repeat for the other mangoes.
Pack the mango slices and pieces into the glass jars, and cover with the sugar syrup.
Stores in the fridge for a month, maybe two.
The spices used can be varied. Try using cardamom, cinnamon, coriander and some saffron. Try kaffir lime leaves with lemongrass. Try citrus peel and a drop of rose water. Why not cardamom and ginger? The variety is only limited by your imagination.
browse some of the Mangoes recipes