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Fun Ways to Cut a Mango for Eating as a Flower or a Hedgehog

Updated on August 17, 2013

How to Make a Mango on a Stick or Mango Hedgehog

Mangoes are one of those healthy treats that with a bit of creative slicing can be turned into fun to eat treat. As an excellent source of Vitamins C (anti-oxidants), Vitamin A (Beta-carotene) and copper and a good source of Vitamin B6, Vitamin E, along with potassium, magnesium and fiber mangoes make very healthy snacks with about 100 calories in a cup.

Finding fun ways to serve this orange tropical treat can encourage children and adults to eat more of this very popular fruit enjoyed around the world.

Three fun ways to make mangoes more tasty are eating them cut into flower-like shapes or wedges and served on a stick, or cutting them up like little hedgehogs or turtles which are fun finger foods for kids. The hedgehogs are a very easy way to make diced mangoes.

Of course if cutting mangoes in flower shapes is too much, I have also included basic information on cutting mangoes in sliced chunks and diced which also make fun healthy treats. For those who need extra convincing, I've included information on the health benefits of mangoes near the end.

This lens was inspired by the IMMINENT Quest to write about something orange, so I've included a lot of pictures of this orange tropical delight. Mangoes are one of the more popular orange fruits eaten around the world.

Mangoes on a Stick by eric molina. Used under a Creative Commons License.

Mangoes are excellent sources (more than 20%) of Vitamins C (anti-oxidants), Vitamin A (Beta-carotene) and the mineral copper.

They also are good sources (10 to 19%) of Vitamin B6, Vitamin E and fiber.

Mangoes also contain more than 5% of the daily value for Vitamin K, folate, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, potassium and magnesium.

— Kirsti A. Dyer

Try a Delicious Healthy Treat

Image by eric molina
Image by eric molina

Healthy Fruit Treats and Mangoes on a Stick by eric molina.

Used under a Creative Commons License.

How to Cut a Mango Flower

Image by Fred Camino
Image by Fred Camino

Mango flowers are a fun treat sold in different amusement parks. We discovered them on a recent trip to Santa Barbara.

These edible flowers are such a visually appealing, bright orange sweet treat on a stick, who wouldn't want to eat one.

The good news for parents is that they are way to get their children to eat a treat that is filled with all kinds of great nutrition.

  • Cook time: 10 min
  • Ready in: 10 min
  • Yields: 1

Ingredients

  • Ripe Mango
  • Vegetable peeler or knife
  • Bamboo chopstick or skewer or stick
  • Large ktchen knife
  • Extras: Sea salt
  • Extras: Lemon or lime juice
  • Extras: Chili powder or flakes
  • Extras: Cinnamon

Instructions

  1. To get an idea of how to slice a mango into a flower, take a look at the video clips showing the street vendors. You'll get an idea of the angle and the spacing for the cuts.
  2. 1. Wash the mango.
  3. 2. Cut an end off of the bottom of the mango (the wider end).
  4. 3. Firmly place the mango on a bamboo skewer, stick or chopstick. Note: The stick needs to be strong enough to support the weight of the mango.
  5. 4. Use the vegetable peeler (more children friendly) or the large knife to cut off the outer skin.
  6. 5. Start carving the mango flower, working from the base of the mango to the top. Slice at a downward diagonal down to the pit, working your way in a circle around the mango, turning and slicing to create the first row of petals (~ 3 to 4 slices).
  7. To create the effect of petals, for the next row, make sure the new slices are off center from the first row.
  8. Continue making slices in your mango until you reach the top. Add in a few small decorative slices at the top.
  9. 6. Add the Extras: Sprinkle with sea salt and lemon (or lime) juice or some cinnamon to bring out the flavor.
  10. For an extra flavor kick use chili powder
  11. 7. Have fun developing your own pattern and flower designs for Mango on a Stick.
  12. P.S. If the idea of cutting a mango flower is too much, read on to find an Easier version of Mango on a Stick.
  13. Mango on a Stick with Chili Powder by Fred Camino. Used under a Creative Commons License
Cast your vote for How Make a Mango Flower on a Stick

How to Make a Mango Flower - Videos

See how a Mango flower is made by watching these street vendors at work.

Order Mangoes on Amazon

Mangos - 4 lbs - Mangos From the Fruit Company
Mangos - 4 lbs - Mangos From the Fruit Company

If you can't get mangoes in your store, you can order them from Amazon.

 

The Rest of the Tools

8 Long 3 mm Thick Bamboo Skewers (100/bag)
8 Long 3 mm Thick Bamboo Skewers (100/bag)

Put the mango onto a thick bamboo skewer or chopstick. It makes it easier to work with when cutting.

 
Messermeister Pro Touch Fine Edge Swivel Peeler, Black
Messermeister Pro Touch Fine Edge Swivel Peeler, Black

Use the swivel peeler to peel off the skin.

 
J.A. HENCKELS INTERNATIONAL Forged Synergy 8-inch Chef's Knife
J.A. HENCKELS INTERNATIONAL Forged Synergy 8-inch Chef's Knife

The large knife is used to slice the mango into a flower

 
Kuhn Rikon Colori Bulk Pack Chef's Knife, 6-Inch, Green
Kuhn Rikon Colori Bulk Pack Chef's Knife, 6-Inch, Green

I prefer working with a slightly smaller knife.

 
Rada Cutlery W226 Tomato Slicer Knife
Rada Cutlery W226 Tomato Slicer Knife

Small knives, like those for slicing tomatoes, are very helpful for slicing up delicate fruits and vegetables.

This is my "go to" style of knife when I have to cut veggies and fruits.

 

The Extras

These are some of the extras that you might want to try on your sliced mango. Personally, I'd probably want mine with melted chocolate.

Kamenstein Adjustable Glass Spice Grinder with Salt, 5-Inch
Kamenstein Adjustable Glass Spice Grinder with Salt, 5-Inch

Sea salt helps to bring out the sweet flavors of the mango.

 
Sicilia Lemon Juice - 4 oz
Sicilia Lemon Juice - 4 oz

Lemon juice adds a bit of tartness.

 
Sicilia Lime Juice - 4 oz
Sicilia Lime Juice - 4 oz

Lime juice can also be used for a bit of tartness.

 
Simply Organic Cinnamon Ground Certified Organic, 2.45-Ounce Container
Simply Organic Cinnamon Ground Certified Organic, 2.45-Ounce Container

Cinnamon is another extra that can be sprinkled on cut mangoes.

 
Simply Organic Chili Powder Certified Organic, 2.89-Ounce Container
Simply Organic Chili Powder Certified Organic, 2.89-Ounce Container

Sprinkle on some chili powder for an extra kick.

(Not recommended for those who don't like spicy foods)

 

Taste a Healthy Tropical Treat!

Enjoy an edible Flower on a Stick

Image by edenpictures
Image by edenpictures

Enjoying a tropical treat at Coney Island Treat by edenpictures.

Used under a Creative Commons License.

How to Cut a Mango

Image by W.A. Djatmiko
Image by W.A. Djatmiko

Tips for Slicing a Mango

With a few tips, slicing up a mango can be a lot faster and a lot less work.

Probably the most challenging part is getting the pit or the giant seed out of the center without wasting too much of the yummy fleshy part.

The key to slicing a mango, it to make your cuts slightly off center ~ 1/4 to 1/2 inch depending on the type of mango. In the picture to the right you can see the mango has been cut so just a bit of the pit is showing.

Make two clean slices on either side of the center of the mango, so you are left with two mango slices and one slice that holds the pit.

Trim off the peel from the slice with the pit and then cut the mango fruit away from the seed.

For the other two sections, use a knife to slice them in one direction to make sliced mangoes or in two directions (cross hatching) to make diced mangoes. Once these pieces of the mango have been cut, just scoop out the slices or the diced mangoes with a large serving spoon.

After reading how to slice up a mango, watch the videos below to see how easy it is to cut a mango.

Sliced Mango by W.A. Djatmiko. Used under a Creative Commons License.

How to Cut a Mango - Video Tutorials

Learn all about this amazing fruit and and how to cut a mango from Megan McKenna of the National Mango Board, Chef Marcus Guiliano and very simple instructions from howardnstone.

Mango Cutting Supplies on Amazon

Use a clean cutting surface, clean utensils to cut your mango and a large spoon to scoop out the fleshy parts.

Core Bamboo 10488AM Amazon Exclusive Bamboo Cutting Board Set, 3-Piece
Core Bamboo 10488AM Amazon Exclusive Bamboo Cutting Board Set, 3-Piece

Three different sized cutting boards for cutting mangoes and other foods

All boards are 0.4 inches thick

Small: 8 by 6 inches

Medium: 11 by 8.5 inches

Large: 13 by 9-1/2 inches

 
Hampton Forge Tomodachi All Purpose Kitchen Knife, 6-Inch, Orange, HMC01A598A
Hampton Forge Tomodachi All Purpose Kitchen Knife, 6-Inch, Orange, HMC01A598A

I tend to like smaller knives for cutting. This orange all purpose knife almost matches the color of the mango.

 
8-3/8" Solid Serving Spoon Stainless Steel - Mirror Finish for Elegant Buffet Serving!
8-3/8" Solid Serving Spoon Stainless Steel - Mirror Finish for Elegant Buffet Serving!

Use a large serving spoon to help in scooping out the fleshy part of the fruit.

 
Image by Tristan Highbee
Image by Tristan Highbee

Easier Versions of Mango on a Stick

If cutting a mango into a flower shape seems to difficult or if you are like me and don't like using large sharp knives with children in the house, you can do a simiplier version of mango on a stick.

Easier Version of Mango on a Stick

For the easier version of Mango on a Stick all you have to do is to cut the out the pit of the mango creating three parts (as seen above), then slice up the mango half sections into long mango segments.

Once you have the mango segments, you can skewer the segments on bamboo sticks and top with your favorite extras salt, lemon or lime juice, chili powder or ground cinnamon and serve them up on a plate or in a cup.

Easiest Version of Mango on a Stick

For the easiest version of mango on a stick, omit the stick or use it as an eating utensil. Just put a bunch of mango slices into a cup (like the one to the right) and top with your favorite extras and eat with a fork.

According to the photographer, this tasty mango treat in a cup only cost him $1.50 in Mexico City.

Mangoes in a Cup by Tristan Higbee. Used under a Creative Commons License.

The 5 Minute Version of Mango on a Stick

The inspiration behind our Easier Version of Mango on a Stick.

How to Cut a Mango Hedgehog

Image by Zantastik
Image by Zantastik

Cut a Mango like a Hedgehog for Easy Dicing

Cutting up a mango like a hedgehog* as seen in the image to the right makes it a fun finger food for kids, or a nearly irresistible treat for tweens and teens. When I slice up our mangoes this way, I can barely get them away from my kids to use them for smoothies.

If you can get them away from your kids, the hedgehogs are an easy way to make diced mangoes or square mango chunks. The hedgehog is the style of mango cutting that I do every morning when we slice up mangoes into chunks for a smoothie.

To cut the hedgehog pattern take a piece of mango that the pit has been cut off from and use a small knife to make even slices first in one direction and then at 90 degrees in a second direction creating a cross hatching pattern. The trick is to just cut into the fleshy part of the mango, but not cut through the skin.

Once these pieces of the mango have been cut, open up the mango into a hedgehog for immediate eating, or scoop out the diced mango chunks with a large serving spoon to use in your favorite recipe.

* In doing the research for this page, I also came across a reference to this way of cutting mangoes as a turtle.

Diced Hedgehog-style Mango by Zantastik. Used under a Creative Commons License

How to Make a Mango Hedgehog - Video Tutorial

Watch Bridget Davis, the Internet Chef, Chef Allen Sussner with the Mango Board and Dani Spies show how easy it is to turn mango hedgehogs into diced mangoes.

Enjoy an Orange Hedgehog

Image by little_yiye
Image by little_yiye

Mango Hedgehog on a Plate by little_yiye. Used under a Creative Commons License

Cut a Mango with a Slicer

Available on Amazon
Available on Amazon

Cut a Mango with a Slicer or Splicer

If you eat a lot of mangoes and eat a lot of the larger versions of mangoes, getting a mango slicer or splicer can be very helpful in making it way easier to quickly get the pit or the large seed out of the mango.

As you can see in watching the video using the Oxo mango splitter below or in the image to the right, the mango pit can be easily cut out of the center of a mango with a single motion. This tool is better for larger mangoes, since there is a fixed chunk that is taken out of the mango with the slicer.

The Amco mango tool makes it easier to get the pit out of any sized mango as seen in the video below. This requires making two curved slices on either side of the pit, but this too works better with my favorite type of mango, the Champagne mango.

The Champagne mangoes tend to be smaller, so work better with the tool and don't work as well with the mango splitters, since more of the flesh stays behind in the pit slice.

Oxo Mango Splitter available on Amazon

Cut a Mango with a Slicer - Video

Watch how to cut a mango using a special mango slicer and a 2-in-1 mango tool.

Mango Splitter on Amazon

Amco 2-in-1 Mango Tool
Amco 2-in-1 Mango Tool

The Amco mango tool makes it easier to get the pit out of any sized mango.

 
OXO Good Grips Mango Slicer, Splitter, and Corer
OXO Good Grips Mango Slicer, Splitter, and Corer

The oxo splitter helps make it easier to cut mangoes.

 
KitchenCraft Mango Pitter KCMANGO
KitchenCraft Mango Pitter KCMANGO

Slice up mangoes easily with this mango pitter.

 

Mango Nutrient Facts

Delicious and Nutritious Tropical Fruit Treat

Image by zeafonso
Image by zeafonso

Mangoes for Sale by zeafonso. Royalty Free Use.

Image by Kirsti A. Dyer
Image by Kirsti A. Dyer

How Nutritious is a Mango?

In compiling the information on the nutrient benefits of mangoes, I looked at three sources: the National Nutrient Database on Mangoes, Supertracker Food-a-Pedia information on mangoes and National Mango Board. Where there were differences I went with the information from the National Nutrient Database and Supertracker. The Nutrition Facts label to the right is based on this information.

As you can see a one cup serving of mango has about 100 calories. Mangoes are also naturally fat free, sodium free and cholesterol free. Mangoes have a very small contribution to calories from fat.

  • Mangoes are an excellent source of Vitamins C (anti-oxidants), Vitamin A (Beta-carotene) and copper. To qualify as "excellent" the food needs to provide 20% or more of the daily value in a serving.
  • They also are good sources (10 to 19%) of Vitamin B6, Vitamin E and fiber. To qualify as a "good" source the food needs to provide between 10% and 19% of the daily value in a serving.
  • Mangoes also contain more than 5% of the daily value for Vitamin K, folate, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, potassium and magnesium.
The amounts of Vitamin A varied greatly with the sources, which may depend on the type of mango, the size of the mango considered and the processing. The National Nutrient Database lists a one cup serving (165 grams) of Vitamin A at 35%. The Office of Dietary Sources fact sheet for Vitamin A lists one raw whole mango at 45%. My dried mangoes from Trader Joe's have Vitamin A at 80% daily value in a 38 gram serving.

With over 20 different vitamins and minerals mangos are definitely a much better snack choice than some of the nutrient poor snack foods.

Mango Nutrition Facts Label created by Kirsti A. Dyer using information on Mangoes from National Nutrient Database on Mangoes, Supertracker Food-a-Pedia and National Mango Board.

One cup of mangos [contains only] 100 calories.

Each serving of mango is fat free, sodium free and cholesterol free.

Mangos contain over 20 different vitamins and minerals, helping to make them a superfood.

— National Mango Board

Nutrients in Mangoes

Mangoes are an excellent source of many vitamins, a good source of several minerals as well as a good source of dietary fiber. Antioxidants, such as in Vitamin C and beta-carotene in Vitamin A have been show to have numerous health benefits.

Research is underway to see if mangoes may be helpful in managing diabetes, decreasing inflammation and if the polyphenols in mangoes may help in combating cancer cells.

  1. Vitamin C
  2. Vitamin A
  3. Vitamin B6
  4. Copper
  5. Potassium
  6. Magnesium
  7. Fiber

The mango is high in fiber, vitamins A and C, as well as other minerals and phytochemicals.

Our findings demonstrate that mango flesh is a promising alternative that can be useful in reducing body fat and blood glucose.

— Dr. Edralin Lucas, Associate Professor, Nutritional Sciences, Oklahoma State University

Research on Mangoes

Some of the recent research on mangoes have been investigating the effect of mangoes on blood sugar and that mangiferin, a compound occurs naturally in mango, might have an antitumor effect in breast cancer cells.

The research team at Oklahoma State observed in their study on mice that mangoes affected several factors involved in fat metabolism. Mangoes helped in reducing the circulating level of the hormone leptin (one of the hormones produced by fat cells that promotes fat storage). Reducing the levels of leptin may help in decreasing the amount of fat store.

They are currently doing a human study looking at whether incorporating mangoes into the diet of overweight people may help in reducing blood sugar and in reducing body fat. Be watching for the results of this new study.

How do you like to eat your mangoes?

Comment on Fun Ways to Cut a Mango

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    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @chrins: Thank you

    • chrins profile image

      chrins 3 years ago

      Wow very nice :) i love mangoes!

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @LeslieMirror: Beautiful isn't it?

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @acreativethinker: Thank you for visiting.

    • profile image

      acreativethinker 3 years ago

      Simply a wonderful lens on mangoes. Great photos. Thanks for sharing. :)

    • LeslieMirror profile image

      LeslieMirror 3 years ago

      It looks like some kind of ornament of a party. =) will try

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @chi kung: They are delicious any way you slice them.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @Diaper Bag Blog: I agree, healthy, yummy and marvelous.

    • chi kung profile image

      chi kung 3 years ago

      I love to eat my mangoes cut in slices

    • Diaper Bag Blog profile image

      Stanley Green 3 years ago from Czech Republic

      Oh yes! mangoes are yummy, healthy and you can create even art using them.... Marvellous fruits!

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @anonymous: Thank you.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @Mary Stephenson: My kids will eat them as hedgehogs, without waiting for them to get cut off of the skin.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @EzLoanLookUp LM: Fun isn't it?

    • EzLoanLookUp LM profile image

      EzLoanLookUp LM 3 years ago

      Yum mangos are so good. I had no idea I could make them into works of art

    • Mary Stephenson profile image

      Mary Stephenson 3 years ago from California

      Love mangoes. I just eat them cut up in squares (like the hedgehog) but off the skin.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Very beautiful lens. I appreciate you to very hard work.

    • EzLoanLookUp LM profile image

      EzLoanLookUp LM 3 years ago

      Yum mangos are so good. I had no idea I could make them into works of art

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @PlumberJorge: They are one of my favorite fruits too.

    • PlumberJorge profile image

      PlumberJorge 3 years ago

      Mangoes are my favorite

    • PlumberJorge profile image

      PlumberJorge 3 years ago

      Mangoes are my favorite

    • profile image

      jura 3 years ago

      It have to be fun rating that flowers .

    • darciefrench lm profile image

      darciefrench lm 3 years ago

      Gorgeous ways to eat mangos

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 3 years ago from Northern California

      @Liveliferead LM: I enjoy eating mangoes too.

    • Liveliferead LM profile image

      Liveliferead LM 3 years ago

      I love mangoes! I can eat a boat load of them!

    • Susan Zutautas profile image

      Susan Zutautas 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I have to try making the flowers. They look so pretty!

    • HealthfulMD profile image
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      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @lewisgirl: Have fun and enjoy!

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @SheGetsCreative: They are really good for you.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @Torrs13: I sure was when I was writing the lens.

    • profile image

      Torrs13 4 years ago

      I am craving mango now!

    • SheGetsCreative profile image

      Angela F 4 years ago from Seattle, WA

      Never been a big mango fan -- maybe I just need to practice flower cutting ;)

    • lewisgirl profile image

      lewisgirl 4 years ago

      I learned a lot in this lens. Mangos are my favorite and can't wait to try the flower on a stick!

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @favored: The flower technique is similar to making the old radish rose.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @lesliesinclair: Perhaps they will be now.

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 4 years ago from USA

      This was interesting and can be used for cutting other fruits. Enjoyed my visit.

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      You make this look enchanting, but my cut mangoes are not too spiffy.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
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      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @DLeighAlexander: They are delicious. We rarely get much past creating the hedgehog level before my kids want to eat them, even now as tweens and a teen.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
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      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @mina009: Hope you enjoyed it.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @Coffee-Break: We've eaten a lot more mangoes, when they are in season, since I've learned how to use the mango splicer.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @JaspinderKaur: Thank you.

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @girlfriendfactory: Grape, raisins or even tiny red pomegranate eyes. Mine would probably want mini chocolate chips.

    • DLeighAlexander profile image

      DLeighAlexander 4 years ago

      Very appealing and fun creations! I like to eat mangoes by themselves or cut up in salads. They are a very nutritional & tasty fruit.

    • profile image

      mina009 4 years ago

      Very interesting information and useful tips about mango.

    • Coffee-Break profile image

      Dorian Bodnariuc 4 years ago from Ottawa, Ontario Canada

      Great information. I always have problems when I need to cut mangoes. The mango corer looks like a great option.

    • profile image

      JaspinderKaur 4 years ago

      yummy.great lens.

    • girlfriendfactory profile image

      girlfriendfactory 4 years ago

      Wow how yummy looking! I loved the hedgehog! You could add grape eyes for the kiddos, too! :-)

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @SBRTechnologies1: They are really very helpful for cutting mangoes.

    • SBRTechnologies1 profile image

      SBRTechnologies1 4 years ago

      The mango slicers were very interesting...

    • SBRTechnologies1 profile image

      SBRTechnologies1 4 years ago

      The mango slicers were very interesting...

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @RinchenChodron: Thanks. I tried to find the most amazing orange photos. Mango cutters have definitely help to increase our consumption of mangoes.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 4 years ago

      What an eye appealing lens! I had no idea there were mango cutters!

    • HealthfulMD profile image
      Author

      Kirsti A. Dyer 4 years ago from Northern California

      @TapIn2U: The flower is harder, but can be done with some practice. The hedgehog is one that I do every morning that we slice up mangoes into chunks for a smoothie.

    • TapIn2U profile image

      TapIn2U 4 years ago

      This looks hard but fun. Sundae ;-)