Mango salsa and painting. What do those two have in common?
A lot. In my world at least. Both mango and painting involve fun colors. It’s public knowledge that paint brings canvases to life. As for mangos, I will simply say that they bring a dish to life. Think about their gorgeous orange color. It brightens salads, a glass of juice, and in this case my crispy Haitian cassava.
Just look at the picture below. Isn’t it bright and colorful? We can now agree that mango and painting do have something in common, can’t we?
But the real reason I am making this claim today is because I actually tried my very first mango salad while painting.
A few friends and I used to get together to sip and paint. We call those sessions Artsip. Since no one can truly sip without eating, we also included a few fun culinary creations of our own on the menu. During one of those Artsips, our hostess served a mango salsa alongside some crispy pita chips. It was my first time eating mango that way. And my palate was delighted. Even she was surprised at how good her salsa was. When we sang her praises, she told us that she had opted for that recipe because she had too many mangos at home. She needed to get rid of them before they went bad. So, inspired by an online recipe, she had drenched her mango in a vinaigrette, added some tomatoes to the mix and served it to us as an appetizer. Little did she know everyone would love it.
I myself adopted that preparation. There is just something about the mixture of the sweet mango and our famous piment bouc. Those flavors make the perfect complement to any crackers.
So today, years after my first mango salsa, I am serving you my own recipe. I did not use a vinaigrette in this one. Instead, I chose to prepare it just like I would a slaw, except that I used mango in lieu of the cabbage. This mango salsa is flavored with shallots, onions, bell pepper, paprika, lime juice, parsley, and of course our beloved piment bouc.
The options to serve this salsa are endless.
I served my salsa tostada-style atop crispy cassava and a pikliz bed sprinkled with feta cheese, black lava salt and black sesame seeds. A pure delight. While playing around with my veritab taco shells, I also folded it into a soft cassava filled with a spicy shredded griot-style pork. That taco was perfection just like my tostadas.
I am convinced there are more ways than one to serve this mango salsa. I encourage you to explore them. What have you got to lose? It is mango season, and my recipe is below. Grab it, have some fun with it. And, if you happen to eat it differently, be sure to share your creation with me!
Spicy Mango Salsa
- 1 mango Baptiste or any firm flesh mango
- 1 chopped piment bouc
- 2-3 chopped shallots
- 1/4 small purple onion chopped
- 1 small bell pepper chopped
- 1 lime juice
- chopped parsley
- splash of olive oil
- black lava salt
- black sesame seeds
- crumbled feta cheese
- Wash, peel and slice the mango
- In a bowl, combine all the ingredients
- Let macerate for a few hours in the fridge
- Garnish with lava salt and black sesame seeds and crumbled feta cheese (optional)
- Serve with crackers, cassave, chips or with a meat of your choice