Mango Brulée

I watched the eclipse from the top of Iron Mountain yesterday.It’s a mountain, right smack in the middle of Florida, but I admit it looks much more like a hill. At 295 feet above sea level, it’s one of the highest points in Florida, on the Lake Wales Ridge. Perched at the top is Bok Tower, an Art Deco carillon tower built in 1927. My mom and I set up a picnic in a shady spot under the oaks. We listened to carillon music and waited for the moon to pass in front of the sun. We watched with our eclipse shades, and by 2:45pm, 85 percent of the sun was covered. It altered the colors and shadows of everything around us. The oak trees became pinhole cameras, casting crescent shadows of the sun on the sidewalks beneath them. I’d love to witness totality one day, so I’m saving my eclipse shades. And now for some mango brûlée, one of the simplest desserts you will ever make. This recipe was a contender for Mango Mania this year, but I soon realized it’s impossible to guarantee that classic, crackly crème brûlée crust you can shatter with a spoon unless it’s served relatively soon after it’s made. It’s still on the table for next year, but I’ll need a bigger blow torch to make 100 of them. I have a feeling someone is going to advise against that idea. If you slice the sides away from the pit of a mango, you get two mango cheeks. They’re little mango bowls, and if you score the flesh you can eat the fruit straight from the bowl. With a little imagination we can turn them into a crème brûlée of sorts. Score the flesh. Rub with cinnamon. Sprinkle the top with sugar and torch or broil. Voila! Mango brûlée. Even if it never makes it to Mango Mania, I think this one’s a winner. It’s simple, elegant, and all about the mango.

Mango Brulée
  1. 2 mangos
  2. 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  3. 1/4 cup turbinado or raw sugar
  1. Preheat the broiler, if using, and position a rack 6 inches below it.
  2. Slice the cheeks off each mango.
  3. Score the flesh about 1/2" apart in both directions, just down to the skin. Repeat on all 4 mango cheeks.
  4. Rub each one with a pinch of cinnamon
  5. If using a kitchen torch, sprinkle sugar over one mango. Torch the sugar using small circular motions until some parts burn a little and all the sugar is melted. Repeat with the remaining mangos.
  6. If broiling, place the mangos on a baking sheet. If they're not level, use some crumpled foil to balance them. Pile the sugar on top of each one and place the baking sheet under the broiler. Leave the oven door ajar. Watch for the sugar to bubble up and burn a tiny bit in some places. It will only take a couple minutes. Turn the baking sheet halfway if necessary so they brown evenly.
  7. Serve immediately.
Suwannee Rose











10 Comments Mango Brulée

  1. Cheryl Bredin August 22, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    What a great idea! I was picturing a very complicated recipe. LOL
    Thanks again!

    1. suwanneerose August 22, 2017 at 6:18 pm

      I did overcomplicate it on my first few tries, but this was so much better!

  2. Lynne Randall August 22, 2017 at 3:32 pm

    I’m jealous that you still have mangos!

    1. suwanneerose August 22, 2017 at 6:14 pm

      I’m coming clean here, Mango Queen. I used some very inferior Tommy Atkins from a neighbor’s tree for the recipe above. We do have a half-dozen Keitts coming up that we’re going to treat like gold. Next year….

  3. Anita Randall August 22, 2017 at 4:37 pm

    I am also jealous, dreaming of mangos like there were last summer, so plentiful that I got weekly shipments from the Mango Queen sent to me here in central PA. We do have amazing field-grown tomatoes now (though hardly an equal substitute).

    We also had a thunderstorm as the eclipse passed, so just another day in the mountains. Good for napping and dreaming.

    1. suwanneerose August 22, 2017 at 6:17 pm

      I think homegrown tomatoes are right up there with mangos. I’m looking forward to finally tasting a decent one in a few months. A thunderstorm in the mountains sounds like a lovely day nonetheless, Anita.

  4. John Moore August 23, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Have to make this for mom. The sweet tooth is calling and at 87 it’s something healthy for her at the same time. The Bok Tower photos are amazing Dan Dan. It is stit a place when I stand on that mountain and look across that field let’s me know there is a higher source that shows up there. Would love to be there with a telescope at night to see what flies by.

    1. suwanneerose August 23, 2017 at 10:51 am

      The Keitts would be so good with a burnt caramel crust on top! I know grandma would love it.
      I’ve always wanted to visit Bok Tower at night. It’s especially pretty at Christmas. Maybe one of these days we’ll make it happen.

  5. Nicole August 27, 2017 at 2:32 pm

    I love this idea and will be making some with my next batch of mangos!

    1. suwanneerose August 27, 2017 at 3:05 pm

      I hope you get a batch soon! We’ve got a few late-season varieties ripening up around Pine Island right now.

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