The common method for making dried mango: Selection of ripe and firm fruits. Slicing and cooking in syrup with metabisulfite or erythorbate. Then drying to drive away excess moisture.
Adding syrup has three purposes. Render the fruits sweeter and more acceptable. Fill the slices with sugar to avoid too much shrinking during drying process. And act as natural preservative.
Sodium erythorbate or sodium metabisulfite is added to prevent discoloration. The latter is discourage due to allergic reaction to some hypersensitive persons. The first is recommended and still safe as of date.
I already tried drying carrot slices under heat of sun. It resulted to thin curly and tough carrots with the original orange color. Drying ripe mango slices also yielded similar color retention. The texture was still soft due to original high sugar content. A bit chewable texture, sweet delectable mango taste and fragrant aroma. A better alternative to traditional dried mango.
1) Select firm ripe mangoes. Take time practicing this skill. Flavor and texture uniformity of final product largely depends on this. Take note of firmness, skin color and aroma.
2) Make slices about 2 mm thick. Thicker slices take longer drying time and allow more room for spoilage and contamination. Drying two mango halves takes relatively long, probability of deterioration during drying is high.
3) Arrange slices in tray (aka plate) and dry under the sun from one to two days. Cover with fine net. Fragrant mango aroma will surely attract dirty flies.
4) Roll the slices and pack.
Keep the whole procedure as clean as much as possible. No heat treatment is involve in this process. Sun’s heat is not enough to render microorganisms harmless.
Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.