Bought this langra variety and turned out to be a disaster. Believe it or not, not only did it look un-mango-like, but tasted like old clothes. But let me begin at the beginning.
Trying to enjoy mangoes when it is in season – so I usually buy banganapalli, as you know that’s my favoritest. Neelam, rumani, haapoos, malgova all okay but banganapalli rules without question, at least for me.
However, since it wasn’t available, I decided to take a chance on langra. Stupid mistake. For one thing it didn’t really look alright. On day 2, one mango had black spots. I decided I must cut it up and consume it or put it in the fridge. By the time I got around to it, it was pretty late at night after I had wound up the kitchen. But afraid that it might get worse the next day, I pushed aside my laziness, turned on some music and decided to tackle it. The neelams I had were also becoming spotty, so I cut them up first. Out of 5, two had to go into the dustbin. Three were okay-ish. I consumed one and packed the two away in a dubba. Not that there was much, but still – couldn’t eat it all in one go.
Then I moved on to the langra. Even peeling it was a pain. Ugh, and it smelled of old clothes. Old wet clothes – I am not joking. It reminded me of that time when one of our relatives was visiting and soaked her clothes in a bucket and kept it under the cot – and we discovered it the next day – stale soap and all. Ugh.
Worst thing? I had put a piece in my mouth and was regretting it like crazy. I just dumped it in the bin and moved on to the papaya that was also perfectly ripe. Well that turned out to be a happy experience and made up for the lousy mangoes. After I had peeled, cut and packed away, I went and sat down, feeling strangely exhausted. But it was only in my mind you know, as I longingly thought of those days when, even though you did not like mangoes, you would buy them by the kilo, pulp them and store them in the freezer for me.
So – it will always be banganapalli for me. Oh, also totapuri. I buy that regularly now that it is still in season. Makes a great complement to carrot salad. Best of all, Vidur really enjoys the salad. What’s not to love? He loves the mango also, naturally. I still halve the ripe mango and give it to him and he eats it, scooping out the pulp with a spoon. Still doesn’t like to get his hands messed up. Find it so funny. And of course I, as usual, resent the “andi”. Cue Lakshman’s dialog. Wonder where he is, what he’s doing now. Even with the power of the internet, I cannot track down some of my favorite people, Mi. The only people who could give me info about them are no more.
Did I tell you I made mango barfi with mango pulp as an ingredient some time back? Actually, I set out to make besan burfi but decided to add in the pulp for some flavor. Turned out really well. Also, can you believe Vidur claims he does not like fresh mango milkshake? What is that? Reminded me of when he would ask you questions like, can you make veg rice without veg? What a barrel of laughs he was! Best was the Ravana story – 10 heads. Did that mean 10 of everything – you know what I mean. 10 potties, therefore? How did his mom wash his bum when he was little? Tough life questions, eh? And now I can never get the visual of 10 bums lined up to be washed. Bah! Imagine diapering them. Okay, enough! I can hear you say that, actually!
How delicious that was! Just thinking about it feels like a happy place. That old Allwyn fridge. How much its freezer had seen! I particularly remember that time when you had dipped Marie biscuits in chocolate and frozen them for me on a large plate. First time, single biscuits. Second time, you had stacked two and that was so wonderful. I recall how one day some of my friends came home and one opened the fridge and found the tray of chocolate dipped biscuits.
Nostalgia is bitter-sweet. I really wish you were around you know.