An article from Devi of Bio Basics in ‘The Hindu’, April 20, 2018. On memories of totapuri aka kilimooku maanga
I first fell in love with these mangoes when we moved to Mumbai two decades ago. The hour-long daily commute made a quick evening snack at the local railway station necessary. The totapuri, sliced and arranged enticingly on the plate, with bright red chilli powder sprinkled atop, was irresistible. I would invariably ask for the bhel puri as well, with chopped mango giving it a distinct flavour.
Another unforgettable experience was my first aam panna, a cooling Maharashtrian drink made from raw mangoes. On that hot day, I drank the refreshing concoction made by women who had pulped the uncooked green totapuri with sugar, mint, and roasted and powdered cumin.
That was the day I decided this was my mango.
In season, kilimooku mangoes go into almost everything we make at home. Starting with the chutney made with coconut, pepper and curry leaves — what else can you expect from somebody born and brought up in Kerala? — right to the raw pieces on a plate.
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