Summery Mango Salsa

I started making this tomato-salsa alternative years ago when I began my career in children's garden education. That summer (and it seems every summer since) the kids were obsessed with mangos, so at their request I found an easy recipe you can make in the garden, at a picnic and especially at home.

Kids love the taste of mangos, yet most have never eaten one whole and had that delightful experience of juice dripping down their faces onto their shirts. Nor have they taken the time to inspect the seed inside and figure out how the plant actually grows, and where it comes from!

So, at every opportunity when I work with kids we sit down and we eat juicy mangos. It's a popular activity which usually requires a follow up the next week to make homemade corn chips (starting with grinding corn kernals) for salsa. But our adventures don't stop there. Once we've removed as much flesh from the seed as possible we carefully cut a corner of the fibrous big seed to break it open. I love this part - it's like opening up a Christmas present, so much surprise on everyone's faces! We then plant the seeds in nutrient rich soil and I tell each student "Well, you should see cotyledons in about 10 days. And then in about 5-6 years we might be able to harvest another fruit. Seems simple right?". Moaning and groaning aside, I win them over again with this sweet and tangy summer salsa.

Ingredients:

  • 3 ripe mangoes
  • 1/2 medium red onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 medium red bell pepper
  • 1 lime, juiced.
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro (or 1 tsp cilantro paste)
  •  Salt to taste
  • Mint leaves, for garnish

Directions:

  1. Carefully cut the mango into small chunks, reserving the seed for future botany lessons! If you've ever struggled with cutting mangos check out this fun video
  2. Chop your onion, garlic, pepper into fine pieces and add to mango.
  3. Juice the lime, discarding the peel and pulp and pour over the salsa.
  4. Add freshly chopped cilantro or for a milder taste use cilantro paste, and one tiny chopped jalapeño.
  5. Mix all ingredients well while adding salt and allow to stand for about 5-10 minutes.
  6. We discovered this season that fresh mint leaves as a garnish (and then chopped into the salsa) were a winner
  7. Enjoy with homemade corn chips - delicious!

Submitted by Alyson Baker