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Mango Salsa

In Salad Dressings, Salsas & Savory Sauces On October 20, 2011 0 Comments


Mangoes are my favorite fruit. They are commonly grown in areas of Asia, Mexico as well as in other warm countries. The flesh of a mango is bright yellow or orange, juicy, sweet and slightly tart (when half-ripened). This sensory experience usually makes me forget that I’m merely eating a fruit. I often incorporate the exotic mango in my Indian, Mexican and California dishes.

In my home, this “hot” Mango Salsa is in such high demand that it doesn’t last very long. When preparing the salsa, you won’t be able to stop yourself from “tasting” at least half of it. Be sure to double up on the ingredients when you go shopping or there will be nothing left for your guests!

Buen Provecho (Spanish, for “Bon Appetit”).

Prep time: 15 to 20 minutes
Makes: 3 cups

2 large, ripe mangos, peeled and diced
2 to 3 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped green bell pepper
2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
½ jalapeño pepper, minced
Juice of ½ a lime or lemon
Dash chipotle ahumado powder* (optional)
1 tablespoon white Balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/8 teaspoon salt

1. Combine all ingredients in a 1 or 2-quart mixing bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings.

2. Stir and serve immediately.

3. Alternatively, the salsa can be refrigerated 2 to 4 hours before serving.

As an appetizer, serve Mango Salsa with tortilla chips or tostada shells.

Mango Salsa can be served as part of a salad course or as a side dish, complementing poultry, meat or fish.

Note: Mango Salsa is best served the same day, but will keep refrigerated up to two days. Overnight, the mango’s texture becomes soft and the salsa mixture is slightly watery but still delicious.

*Chipotle ahumado powder can be purchased online at gourmetsleuth.com.

Text & Photograph © 2011 Nancy DeLucia Real

Carrot Mango Soup

In Soups and Stews On June 29, 2011 0 Comments

On any given afternoon, I’ll do anything to avoid going to the supermarket. To avoid rush hour traffic, I’ll create a quick meal with whatever I find in my refrigerator. In one such instance, all I had were a few carrots, a mango and a piece of fresh ginger. These ingredients were enough to surprise my family with a sweet, tangy soup. But when I finally got to the dinner table, the soup had already cooled down. What a great mishap! I realized that the tropical flavors make this soup exquisite whether it’s served hot or lukewarm. Serve my carrot mango soup – a perfect light meal or first course for a summer lunch or dinner!

Active prep time: 20 to 25 minutes
Inactive prep time: 30 to 35 minutes
Serves: 4 to 6

6 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces (to measure 4 cups)
1 cup diced mango (peel first)
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon finely chopped brown onion
3 to 3½ cups cold water
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1. In a 6-quart saucepot, combine carrots, mango, ginger, garlic, onion, 3 cups of the water and salt.

2. Bring to a boil and cook on high heat, uncovered, 6 to 7 minutes, or until carrot is tender when pierced with a fork.

3. Transfer pot to a cold burner and set aside, uncovered, to cool, 30 to 35 minutes.

4. Purée the cooled soup in blender, in batches, transferring each puréed batch to a large glass or porcelain bowl.

5. Return puréed soup to saucepot and bring to a boil.

6. Stir and add a little more water, until you reach the desired consistency.

7. Add black pepper and taste. Adjust seasonings, if necessary.

Serve hot, garnished with sour cream and a sprig of parsley.

Text & Photograph ©2011 Nancy DeLucia Real

Mango Coconut Thai Rice

In Fun Foods, Pastas, Rice & Legumes (Beans & Grains) On August 2, 2010 2 Comments

While lounging under a palm tree at the beach last week, I was suddenly overcome by the memory of a trip to Thailand. In my mind I was comparing the fruitless palms of Santa Monica to those bursting with coconuts on the shores of North Pattaya Beach. One of our meals on the beach had included a side of rice containing coconut and my favorite fruit, mango. Here’s the recipe that I recreated upon my return to Los Angeles.

Prep time: 30 to 40 minutes
Serves: 4 to 6

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 green onions, white parts finely sliced (green tips discarded)
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
1 cup Jasmine rice, uncooked
2-1/2 cups coconut water
2 tablespoons shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala spice or curry powder
1/4 cup coconut milk combined with 1/4 cup cold water
1/4 cup finely minced fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh mango (cut into 1/4-inch pieces)
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
4 to 6 purple cabbage leaves (for garnish)

1. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat the oil. Stir-fry the onions, bell pepper and rice on medium-low heat for 2 minutes.

2. Stir in the coconut water, shredded coconut, salt, Garam Masala or curry powder.

3. Cover and cook on low heat setting for 12 to 15 minutes or until rice looks dry.

4. Pour the coconut-water mixture evenly over the rice. Cover and continue cooking on low for an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until rice has absorbed most of the liquid.

5. After 3 to 5 minutes, uncover and gently stir in the cilantro, mango and red pepper flakes.

6. Divide rice evenly among cabbage leaves and serve as a side to poultry, seafood or meats.

Note: Garam Masala is an Indian spice blend and can be found in ethnic grocery stores or online.

Text and Photographs ©2010 Nancy DeLucia Real