I’m in a frenzied state buying up and smuggling home vast quantities of the last Alphonso mangoes in England in light of the EU ban on Indian exports coming into force today. In case you’ve been in a cold, dark, news and mango-less hole for the last couple of weeks, the reason why the ban has come into force is because fruit flies, which could be damaging to our native tomato and cucumber crops, have been found in some shipments.
While there are many things you can do with mangoes, these Alphonsos are largely best left unfiddled with, because they are sublime when eaten by themselves. However, in order to preserve their buttery sweet and rich flavour for as long as possible, long after they’ve vanished from our markets in the next week, here is a simple and delicious sorbet recipe.
Oh and in case you’re looking for a tipple with your mangoes, Fiona Beckett, has some suggestions here
SERVES 6 TO 8
- 6 ripe Alphonso mangoes (around 700g mango flesh)
- 100ml double cream
- juice of 2 limes 100g icing sugar
- 100g icing sugar
Although Alphonso mangoes are known for their sweetness, they will vary depending on their quality and ripeness, so I suggest you add both the lime juice and sugar in stages, before you freeze the mixture, tasting it until you’re happy with the flavour and sweetness of your sorbet.
To prepare the mangoes, you’ll need to cut the flesh away from the large stone inside. Lay the mangoes down on their flat sides. Then turn one mango on to its narrow side and, using a sharp knife, slice the cheeks off both sides, narrowly skirting around the mango stone which lies inside. Salvage any flesh from around the stone of the mango with your knife.
Cross-hatch the flesh of the mango cheeks, push them outwards like a hedgehog and scoop off the cubes using a teaspoon. Place the flesh into a food processor or blender, and repeat with the rest of the mangoes.
Add the cream, half the lime juice and half the sugar and blitz together into a purée. Taste and add the rest of the lime juice and sugar as you need it.
Churn in an ice-cream maker until firm (which should take around 20 minutes). Or pop it into a plastic box and then into the freezer, whisking it vigorously after 45 minutes to break up any ice particles. Keep whisking it every 30 minutes for 2 to 3 hours, or until frozen.