Mango Lemonade

I love it when the 1st of a month falls on a Monday. It doesn't give you the scope to evade a promise you made to yourself and it helps to keep things in track. Ever so often we're delaying things by saying, "I'll start that on the 1st", or "I promise from next Monday"...but Mondays come and go and your agenda doesn't take course. Going to the gym is one such agenda for me. :P But when the 1st and Monday coincide you have little excuse to sneak past them. This combination, however, can also usher in good things. Tasty things. Heavenly things. Like mangoes?
I have said this often, in most of my posts that have had anything to do with mangoes. Let me say this once and for all. I'm NOT a mango fan, so much so that I can't eat a mango on its own. My tongue itches and I get this strange sensation in my mouth. There are very few things my palate refuses and I respect its decision. But this does not mean that when the whole country revels in mango madness I stay in my own cocoon and "unfriend" mango. Mango has and will always make those occasional grand entries in my life — in the form of shakes, smoothies, cakes, ice creams or even as lip-smacking savoury delights. So starting from this Monday the 1st and over the next 10 days I'll share with you my exploits with mango and that will probably tell you a thing or two about how somebody, despite being partly-allergic to the fruit, leaves no stone unturned to hog on anything that comes her way.
The idea of the series was conceived one random evening last week. I had just commented on a post in my friend Dhrubaa's blog Not A Curry and just as I was about to press the submit button a chat window popped up on my Facebook page with her name and picture. Quite a coincidence given that we hadn't really spoken in some time. And as with two friends who need to catch up on a lot, our conversation veered from one thing to another. From the weather to shifting cities to PhD qualifiers to finally came and settled at food! We were discussing animatedly about what we have been cooking and I casually mentioned how I've been playing with mangoes given I can't eat it straight. "Why don't you do a mango series?" was her first reaction. Truth be told, I hadn't even thought of that. My 30-day Eat Like a Bong marathon (ushering in Durga Pujo) and 10-day Kickstarting Christmas series last year had left me quite exhausted but also supremely happy at the phenomenal response I got on both occasions. I've had enough rest. Why not seriously consider a series on mangoes, I told myself. And here I am, a week later, with my first post. This time however, I won't claim to bring you a recipe a day for 30 days straight, but yeah, I'll try and post something everyday over a week and a half. That should be enough for a non-mango lover, say what?
Serves: 2

Mango, peeled and roughly chopped: 1
Lime: 3
Mint sugar syrup: 1/2 cup
Club soda: 1/2 cup
Ice cubes: Lots of it
Sprigs of fresh mint: For garnish
Mango wedges: For garnish

For mint sugar syrup:
Water: 1 cup
Sugar: 3/4 cup
Fresh mint leaves: 1/2 cup


1.  First you have to make the simple syrup. In a saucepan combine water, sugar and the mint leaves and stir over low heat till the sugar dissolves completely. (Ideally in a simple syrup the ratio of sugar:water should be 1:1 but I prefer using a little less sugar). Let it cool. You can drain the mint leaves if you so wish, I didn't. I like pops of flashy green in my bright yellow lemonade!

2. Now in a blender puree the mango and in another bowl juice the limes. Set aside.

3. Take your serving glasses and fill them with ice cubes one third way up. Now divide the lime juice, mango puree, mint sugar syrup equally in the two glasses. Top them up with club soda. Stir to blend the layers.

4. Garnish with fresh mint sprigs and mango wedges and serve.
It's Raining Mangoes: Day 1
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