I can hardly believe it’s 2 years since my mom passed away, so for Mother’s Day, I’m celebrating her life with mangoes, one of her favorite fruit and mine! Eaten on its own or in a salad or salsa, the creamy, smooth champagne mangoes are divine. Mangoes always conjure up sweet memories of my childhood growing up in Hong Kong. My favorite mangoes were the tiny ones you can pop into your mouth in one bite! Another memory was of my mom showing us how to cut the mango along the seed and cubing it inside its skin, then pushing the skin from below so the juicy cubes magically popped up ready for us to enjoy without getting our hands all sticky. I love showing this trick to my friends who’ve never seen it done before!
What I’d like to remember my mom for are 2 essentials she taught me which have helped me tremendously in my daily life, thanks mom!
1) Her “little bit of this and little bit of that” approach gave me permission to stray outside ‘recipes’ and I loved her for it. I didn’t understand how significant this approach was till I started teaching cooking myself. It opens up a whole new world of exciting surprises when you don’t have to follow a rigid recipe.
2) The way you do anything in the kitchen applies to everything you do in life i.e. put your whole focus into what you’re doing and do it well! It’s this ‘focus’ that’s motivated me in everything I do from small to large projects.
My three sisters and I are very different but we all inherited a bit of her and we’re proud of it. She’s definitely left her stamp on all who were lucky to have met her!
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!
Mango, Kale Salad
I dreamed up mango and kale salad by finding both at discounted prices from my local farmers’ market. How I come up with my dishes is by seeing what’s fresh and seasonal! Though I confess I overdid it with buying a whole case of 14 mangoes! It was a race to eat them pretty quickly because they started ripening. So, that’s how I ended up making a mango salsa with other vegetables left over from my cooking class.
The sweetness of mango in contrast with the slightly tangy flavor of kale complemented each other very well. Because raw kale can be pretty hard to digest, ‘marinading’ with my homemade vinaigrette did wonders, they became soft and tender as if they were cooked and only for as little as half an hour before I tossed them with the rest of the fixings. So easy and what a delightful change, they brought a more crunchy texture compared with the usual field greens. Mango, kale salad with grilled curry pork shoulder were such a treat, I’ll definitely make this again.
Cubed jicama, tomatoes, shallots, cucumber and mango with a touch of Japanese rice vinegar, tad of salt was all I added to make this salsa. Such a versatile side, I enjoyed it in so many ways…for breakfast with fried egg, lunch with frittata or grilled sausage, with a leftover Filipino grilled pork, for a snack with brie on crackers…
Fruit Fiesta is also the theme for this month’s Let’s Lunch. Let’s Lunch is a virtual themed lunch from food bloggers all over the world! Join by posting a comment below or on Twitter using #LetsLunch. We also have a private Facebook group where we hang out, anyone can join but needs to be invited. Check back for more yummy fruit posts from my Let’s Lunch buddies!
Rejuvenating Balinese Green Apple Salad at Spicebox Travels.
Cantaloupe Pie at Tea and Scones.
Mango Refrigerator Cake at Asian in America.
Sticky Pears at Monday Morning Cooking Club.
Grapefruit Bourbon Cocktail at Glass of Fancy
Mangoes for Mother’s Day at Be a Wok Star.