19 Feb2005


by Marketman

Fresh at the market this morning and only for the next month or so is Paho. paho1These small tart mangoes are not underdeveloped or baby large sweet mangoes but rather a species of its own (Mangifera altissima). The tree is very similar to other more well-known mango trees though their leaves are bigger than that of the typical carabao mango tree (according to Domingo Madulid’s book: The Philippine Archipelago). The fruit is typically pickled, brined (soaked in a salt/water solution), or cooked with other vegetables. It can also be eaten raw with salt and sometimes tomatoes and onions for a mouth puckering side dish.

The fruit can be truly acidic and sour with the added description of being resinous and very sticky. paho2The tree flourishes from the North to the South of the country as well as in parts of Indonesia and is typically in season from March to May. Though it is often harvested and sold in markets, the tree does not seem to be actively cultivated though the Philippine government seems to be trying to encourage its propagation. Doreen Fernandez in her book Fruits of the Philippines lists at least 9 different names for the fruit in the various Philippine dialects (Paho in Tagalog, Popouan in Pampango, Pangi in Visayan, etc.) to demonstrate that it is well known throughout the archipelago and a part of our food culture.

As a kid, I liked anything intensely sour or salty so I inevitably loved paho. I remember it most brined and bottled and kept cold in the fridge. I used to eat it with fried fish, roasted meats, etc. paho3There isn’t much written up on the fruit and I haven’t even found a recipe for pickling or brining it so I will experiment over the next few days. It was in the market in abundance today, about the third week since it first appeared. Seems fruits are ripening earlier than usual this year. At P100 for this small bunch of around 400 grams, it is somewhat pricey, but a little goes a long way. I understand some people have been using pickled Paho in salads and pastas the same way olives might be used. Sounds neat but I have yet to try one such dish…



  1. John Eaton says:

    Good web
    Trying to find how i can get this and caraboa mango were
    We live in sarasota fl

    Mar 31, 2005 | 12:44 am


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  3. Marketman says:

    John, geez, I wouldn’t know how to help you find paho and carabao mangoes in Florida. My best guess is to try the nurseries as far south as possible that carry exotics like unusual citrus plants and mangoes. Hope you are successful!

    Jun 26, 2005 | 6:14 pm

  4. alilay says:

    i sooooo love paho, that is one thing that i miss here in l.a. so good with sinaing na tulingan and fried fish and of course bagoong balayan.

    Feb 14, 2006 | 6:58 am

  5. Andro says:

    just wanted to know..what market did you got this paho fruit,coz i want to buy some for my project.thanks.

    May 3, 2006 | 3:08 pm

  6. Joy says:

    hehe I think I know this fruit. They hv the same ones here in Jakarta too and its usually eaten with rujak sauce or pickled with chillies and onions yummm. thanks MM! =)

    Mar 1, 2007 | 8:13 pm

  7. kasia says:

    I looooovee this fruit. Last year when I first went to the Philippines with my husband we were given this fruit by his family to eat as a snack with sea salt. OH MY GOD, this is delicious. I love sour and being pregnant now I crave it like nothing else. The family called them indian mangoes but i have not been able to find anything close to that here in Chicago. Although my inlaws are leaving for home today I don’t think that they will be able to bring any on the flight home. So other than trying to grow these in Chicago, impossible,… is there an importer that I can seek out to have these shipped to me?

    Mar 6, 2007 | 4:50 am

  8. kasia says:

    okay never mind my last comment becuz if I had bothered to read further down I would have seen the post about Indian Mangoes. regardless the tarter the better yum…

    Mar 6, 2007 | 4:59 am

  9. suzette says:

    this is good with tomatoes and red eggs paired with sinaing na tambakol or tulingan. best eaten kamayan,pinoy style

    Jul 26, 2007 | 9:41 pm

  10. nelson says:

    This fruit is a good appetizer. Together with tomatoes and onions and sauce, I love it, hehehhehh. I think this fruit is only abundant from March to May. I bought 3 bunches for 150 pesos in San Jose just along the road on my way home from Batangas city last week.

    Mar 30, 2008 | 9:46 pm

  11. Huggy Bear Papa says:

    Brining it may involve using Apog.

    I had in mind the formula that you use to make Atsara. I believe you can use that to pickle paho. Sweet sour combination seems okay. Also the pickle formula for Dill Pickles could work for this guy if you decide to use that route. It seems okay to use those systems to pickle the paho. This is really good with Bangus Daing… yum yum!

    May 12, 2009 | 8:25 pm

  12. ponchit says:

    Mangifer altisima according to experts are site specific trees as far as production is concerned and have not been known to fruit outside of Batangas, and Laguna……there were attempts to raise them in negros and even Guimaras and have ended in failure so they say…….funny because there is an ilonggo name for it (Pangi) they would not have a word for it if there were not many fruits available…di ba

    Jul 26, 2009 | 5:06 pm


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