Ahh, summer. The markets never look more colourful than through summer where weird and wonderful exotic fruits and your favourite tropical produce overflow fruit stalls.
Summer creates the ideal time for tropical fruit to produce so it’s when you’ll often find the cheapest and most diverse produce at market stalls. From the lesser-known, starfruit, soursop, durian, custard apple, black sapote, jaboticaba, rambutan, and mangosteen to your more common favourites of pawpaw, lychees and, of course, the summer icon, the sweet and humble summer classic, the mango.
If you’ve got mango on your mind, here are some places near Cairns to get your mango fix.
Mango beer: Sauce Brewing Co
The perfect refreshing hot day antidote awaits at Cairns’ newest brewery, Sauce Brewing Co. As well as their core range, you’ll find special batches of beer and seltzers on rotation, with the upcoming summer adding many fruity flavours into the mix. Pop in through summer and you may find the perfect combination of two summer favourites – mango and ice-cold beer – with their Mango Squeak or their Trubble & Squeak, a double mango IPA. These beers incorporate the subtle sweetness of mango, giving a twist on a classic drink that just works.
Mango Shaved Ice: Hayabusa Kuranda
A summer favourite for many Aussies is the humble snow cone. Japanese cuisine puts a twist on the frozen treat with a summer staple called kakigori (shaved ice). In the colourful Original Rainforest Markets in Kuranda, you’ll find a small stall, manned by a Japanese husband and wife duo, called Hayabusa. Here they serve mango kakigori – a generous bowl of shaved ice drizzled with mango syrup, fresh chunks of mango and topped with a scoop of ice cream. It can be enough to share one between two, but with half of it being ice, who are we to judge? #eatup
A light breakfast: Nu Nu Restaurant
Hot breakfasts might be a firm favourite among many, but if you’re going to be swayed by anything, it’ll be Nu Nu’s muesli. With spiced pineapple and coconut cream soaked muesli, Daintree vanilla, mango, seasonal fruits and toasted coconut, it’s the perfect brekkie on a warm summer morning. Dessert for breakfast anyone?
Avo toast with a twist: Moku
Speaking of breakfast, if you’re going to spend your house deposit on smashed avo for brekkie, it may as well be in style at MOKU, located at Novotel Cairns Oasis Resort. Rest assured, you’ll get bang for your buck with the Tropical Guacamole – a large serving of guacamole on sourdough topped with mango and paw paw salsa on sourdough with roasted tomato. Afterwards, pop down to Novotel’s beach pool for a dip and a refreshing drink. Summer never tasted so good.
Mango cheesecake: Ochre
Ochre has long been a champion of sourcing locally, with any dish on their menu at least two-thirds from the region. With the abundant produce local growers yield through summer, at Ochre you can expect light dishes that hero local fruit including mango, Tropical North Queensland seafood and meats, and native flavours adding a fresh twist to their summer menu.
For your mango fix, sink your teeth into coconut prawns with mango kimchi and desert lime mayo for something savoury, or mango and lime cheesecake with sunrise lime (gel and candied) and scorched mango for the full mango experience
Mango & Bugtail Salad: Dundee’s
Warm days and balmy evenings call for something light and fresh like Dundee’s Mango & Bugtail salad. You’ll find this on the menu at both their waterfront location overlooking the Cairns Marlin Marina, or at the Cairns Aquarium complete with its own aquarium wall.
Fresh mangoes: Rusty’s Markets
If you can’t go past a fresh mango, Rusty’s Markets is your one-stop-shop for everything mango. Find every species of mango imaginable, little mangoes, big mangoes, green mangoes, pink mangoes and of course cheap mangoes – word on the street is you can nab them for a little as 99c a kilo at Rusty’s.
Mango smoothies: Kuranda Scenic Railway Teahouse
Riding the rails of the Kuranda Scenic Railway might make you a little peckish. So while you’re in Kuranda, stop in at the Kuranda Railway Station Tearoom for a legendary mango smoothie or traditional Devonshire Tea. Here you’ll also be able to snack on a range of delicious cakes, scones and light meals.
Post by Jilara Kuch