Using a paper bag
Mangoes when wrapped in a paper bag will release ethylene, an odorless gas that speeds up the ripening process. The mango is good to use when it releases a fruity scent and yields to soft pressure, which usually takes about a day. Be sure not to close the bag completely to allow for air and gas to escape and avoid mold and mildew from forming. Add an apple or banana to the bag to speed up the ripening even more!
Submerge the mango in box (Dabba) of raw rice, ragi or wheat
This old wives’ trick seldom fails! Moms have hidden unripe mangoes for generations in sacks of raw rice, ragi or wheat to speed up the ripening. The grains trap ethylene gas around the mango, resulting in a much faster ripening process. This method is so effective that you sometimes risk over-ripening the mango. Check every 6 or 12 hours for doneness, and you should soon have a wonderfully ripe mango.
On the kitchen counter OR with 1 or 2 bananas/apple
You only need some time and patience for this method. Mangoes, like other fruits, may take several days to ripen, but this is the most natural way of getting your mango plump, juicy, and ready to eat sooner. Placing the mango next to a couple of bananas, an apple or any other ethylene emitting fruit will help ripen the mangoes faster.
Checking for readiness
Smell the mango for the most reliable results – Sniff the stem end of the mango. Does it have a heavy, fruity, almost musky odor? Then it is ripe.
Squeeze the mango gently after you’ve sniffed – Press the mango gently. If it is soft and gives in slightly, it is ripe.
Don’t rely on colour to judge the ripeness of a mango – Ripe mangoes are not always red and yellow. So, forget the look and use smell and softness as your guide instead.
Don’t be disheartened by a few black spots on the surface – Splotchy, black blemishes usually indicate the beginning of the end for mangoes, but don’t necessarily mean the mango is bad. If the black spots are especially soft, cut the mango open and look for translucent pulp – this is a sign of spoilage and the mango should be thrown away. If the fruit doesn’t give in too much, has a pleasant smell, and the skin is otherwise taut and richly-coloured, give the mango a go!