I was recently speaking with a fellow Naturopathic Doctor, whom had noticed the following observation in her interaction with her own patients – that very typically, those who did not seem to enjoy their food, also tended to come from families who did not have the pleasure of having their very own household chef.
Well fret no more, it is easy to create healthy food cravings for even those persons who claim they cannot cook! Below you will find my delicious tropical mango recipe which requires “no cooking” in the classical sense, but is sure to be a family favourite.
Delicious Mango Salad
2 medium-sized ripened mangoes
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro or mint
1 medium-sized red pepper
1 medium-sized carrot
1/4 cup red onion
2 Tbsp of sesame oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 pinch of fresh ground black pepper
1 Tbsp of crushed cashews or white and black sesame seeds
1. Peel the skin of each mango and proceed to cut the fruit as closely as you can to its pit. Don’t worry too much if there is fruit remaining on the pit, you can cut as much away as you are able, and use these pieces in your salad. I often like to cut the fruit off the pit in 2 large sections, after which I can proceed to julienne these sections more carefully, and to your preference. For riper mango, I tend to leave these in larger sections, so as to preserve its shape for visual aesthetics. For less ripe mango, I tend to cut these into skinnier rectangular pieces. Once you have finished preparing these sections, place in a medium-sized serving platter.
2. In a separate bowl, immerse approximately 1/4 of the bunch of fresh cilantro (or mint, depending on your preference) in cool water. You want to completely cover the bunch with water. Depending on the amount of dirt adhered to the roots of the fresh cilantro or mint bunch, you may wish to cut that off before immersing in your bowl of water. Set this aside for later use, allowing any remaining debris from the fresh herbs to gather at the bottom of your bowl.
3. Wash your red pepper and carrot. Slice both lengthwise and proceed to cut each in sizes roughly equivalent to the size of your mango. Place on platter with mango.
4. Remove the outermost peel of your red onion. If you tend to tear up easily when cutting onion, you may wish to lightly rinse off the portion of onion you are using to minimize irritation to your eyes. Proceed to cut your onion in square or rectangular pieces. Layer on platter with mango, red pepper and carrot.
5. Go back to the bowl with your cilantro (or mint). Remove the fresh herbs from the bowl, taking care not to disturb the debris from the fresh herbs at the bottom of the bowl of water. Take a pair of scissors, and begin to cut the cilantro leaves from their stem one at a time. Once you have removed the leaves from the stem, take a handful of the leaves and use the scissors to cut the herbs. I prefer using scissors as opposed to a serrated knife as it tends to cut the herbs in a way that allows them to retain their delicate shape and freshness without looking too handled. Layer this in the serving platter with the mango, red pepper, carrot and red onion.
6. Measure the sesame oil, balsamic vinegar and ground pepper and add to platter right before serving. Give all the ingredients a quick toss with your salad utensils.
7. Garnish with crushed cashews (or mixed white or black sesame seeds) before serving.
8. Enjoy your delicious tropical mango salad and bask in comments of your culinary expertise from your family and friends. Bon appetite!