Mangoes are always a big hit for summer and the Kensington Pride (KP or Bowen Special) tends to be our variety of choice as Queenslanders. But - do you know where the name originates from or how to tell when a mango is ripe? Read more here...
Kensington Pride is a smallish oval mango with an exceptionally fine, spicy, sweet flavour. The skin is pale green which develops to an attractive pale yellow with maturity, often with a red blush. The flesh is a golden yellow colour, quite dense and is largely fibreless. The fruit is classed as medium-large.
Kensington Pride is, for good reason, the favoured mango of Australia.
The seed of Kensington Pride is polyembrionic, i.e. two seedlings emerge from one seed.
Origin: First described as a variety in Bowen, Queensland, Australia. The fruit possibly came from India, brought by merchants to the busy horse-trading town of Bowen in the mid 19th century. Seed from various mangoes was planted by a GE Sandrock, the Harbourmaster, who passed the better quality resulting fruit to a Mr McDonald. These were planted on his property at Adelaide Point, near Bowen from where further selection by a Mr Harry Lott isolated a good fibreless mango. This was cultivated by Harry Lott on his own farm, ‘Kensington’, circa 1880, from whence it spread to other regions to be known as Kensington Pride.
Grown in: Tropical and sub-tropical regions of Australia. The main production areas are: Gin Gin, Carnarvon and Kununurra in Western Australia; Darwin and Katherine in the Northern Territory; Mareeba / Dimbulah, the Burdekin, Bowen, Rockhampton / Yeppoon, Bundaberg, Gympie and the Lockyer Valley in Queensland; and northern New South Wales.
Harvest & Availability: Harvest time depends on location, but can be anything between mid-September and March.
Ripeness: Colour is not the best indication when it comes to ripeness as the skin of a perfectly ripe mango may still have a green tinge or small brown dots. Instead, look for fruit with an appealing mango aroma and smooth skin. Ripe mangoes should be ovate in shape with plump, firm flesh that gives slightly when pressed gently.
Storage: Mangoes should be stored at cool room temperature until ripe. Once ripe, place them in the refrigerator to slow the ripening process for up to four days.
How To Cut A Mango: Mangoes can be a little tricky to cut given the flesh adherence to the seed and the different textures. So - here are our two preferred methods:
Technique 1: Using a pint glass to peel a mangoPeeling a mango with a pint glass is probably the easiest and fastest way to do it. You’ll be AMAZED at how easily the peel is separated from the flesh of the mango!
The one downside to it is that it’s not a “clean” cut, meaning it will be a little mushy and stringy along where it was attached to the peel. This is fine if you are using it for smoothies or don’t care about how it looks, but it is a little less “pretty” than other ways of cutting a mango.
Using a sharp chef’s knife, stand the mango upright and slice the wider sides of the mango off. Mangos have a large, flat pit on the inside, so try and avoid it. If you feel like the knife is slicing into the pit and meeting some resistance, simply move it out a bit.
Align the bottom of one of the cheeks of mango right on the rim of the pint glass. Slide it down, and allow the mango to fall into the glass. You’ll be left with a peel separated from the mango cheek!
Lay the mango piece on a cutting board and dice it, cutting first in one direction and then the other.
Technique 2: How to cut a mango in the peelDicing the mango in the peel will result in more beautiful, clean cuts. You’ll get gorgeous pieces of mango as a result, but it takes a little more time, patience, and knife finesse.
After cutting the sides of the mango off, use a small, sharp knife to score the mango flesh in both directions. Carefully cut all the way to the peel, but not through it.
Use your hands to push the center of the peel from behind, to invert it. The cubes of mango will separate out, making them easily accessible.
Use a small paring knife to cut the cubes off of the mango peel, as close to the peel as you can.