As someone who has said, “Fruit in your green salad? …. Ewwww!” or “I think the world would be better without that particular combination of foods – just keep your fruits and your green vegetables separate please”, I should probably be ashamed. I usually fancy myself as a socially liberal but financially conservative person (I’ll sidebar to say that this has led me down a strange path into political no man’s land where I am now “politically unaffiliated”) – but I digress – because of my usual liberal social stance combined with my “fruits and veggies don’t touch” attitude, my sweet hubby, Mr. Loaves and Dishes has declared me a veggie elitist (I like veggies better) and a foodie separatist. I abhor a label – we are ALL SO MUCH MORE THAN A DAM**D LABEL. Thus, today, I bring you my NEW and FAVORITE melting pot salad Balsamic Mango Red Onion Salad. You will love it!! I DO!!
Recipe express lane coming right up – I only want to share with you the perfect pairing for this Balsamic Mango Red Onion Salad. This salad works BEST when it is paired with a heavier creamy meal. The Balsamic and the acidity of the Mango and the tartness of that red onion cut right through a heavier dressed meat on the dinner plate. Some examples would be my 40 Garlic Chicken, White Chicken Enchiladas, Cheesy Crockpot Chicken and Rice, Chicken Casserole with Peas and Mushrooms (anyway, you get the idea). Now, if you want to chat about salads or life (salads are life, right)? Just meet me after the recipe and we will chat!
THE RECIPE FOR BALSAMIC MANGO RED ONION SALAD
- 1 head of Green Romaine lettuce
- 1 head of Purple Romaine lettuce
- ½ Purple onion
- 1 fresh and ripe Mango (the fruit, not a bell pepper)
- ⅓ Cup Balsamic Vinegar (the best you can afford)
- ¼ Cup Olive Oil (the best you can afford)
- Parmesan shavings
- Salt and Pepper
- Chop up the lettuces into bite size pieces after rinsing and drying them well. (They really do better if you tear them - but cutting will work). Cut the onion in half from top to bottom and then laying your onion on the cut half, remove the top layer of skin. Slice the onion into very thin slices (you only need about ¼ of the whole onion for this salad). Peel the mango using a veggie peeler and then use a sharp knife to whittle small bite size pieces from the edge of the mango until you have removed all of the flesh. Mix the salad together.
- Mix the Vinegar and the Olive Oil together using a whisk until it has come together. Pour over the mixed salad. Using your vegetable peeler, shave off some parmesan cheese from a block of cheese. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt and pepper (very important to the flavor of the salad). Serve immediately.
TIPS AND TRICKS FOR BALSAMIC MANGO RED ONION SALAD
- According to everything I have ever read, lettuces do better in a salad if torn rather than cut by a knife – supposedly, lettuces brown quicker if cut. However, if you are like me and only try to make make enough lettuce for what is needed for dinner – then go ahead and cut – they won’t look bad before you finish your dinner
- Do not apply the dressing for this salad until you are ready to serve, otherwise, it will start to look shlumpy. No one wants shlumpy salad.
- If you have never cut up a Mango – just know there is a MASSIVE seed inside there. When your knife gets down near the stone, there is a white covering over the pit and it tastes bad – so don’t put that white stuff on your salad.
- If your guests or family want some other kind of salad dressing – this salad doesn’t need it – tell them that this salad always comes dressed to the table. (cute, eh?)
- I grew up in mid-west ohio and where I grew up, people called a red bell pepper a Mango. That is not a Mango. A Mango is a fruit it has an orange colored flesh and a great big pit. . A Bell Pepper is a Bell Pepper – it has a thin skin – and red, yellow, orange or green flesh and is mostly hollow inside with a WHOLE BUNCH of little tiny seeds.
- Let’s talk Balsamic vinegar for a minute. There is a BIG difference in taste from the least expensive grocery store kind to other kinds. IF you happen to have a store in your town/city that ONLY sells vinegars and oils – GO THERE! You will need the basic balsamic Vinegar. Just a small bottle should do you for salads and things – because believe me – when you have the right kind – you only need a little smidge. Very tasty and very worth it. Get your Olive Oil there too – very tasty and very worth it.
RECIPE INSPIRATION FOR BALSAMIC MANGO RED ONION SALAD
I’ve told you about my friend Heidi before, Heidi is the queen of salads! I mean, really. She is! For years I have been making the same salad. And hey, I like it, so leave me alone! It is a basic chef salad with Ranch Dressing. I know. I’m boring. Vanilla is also my favorite kind of ice cream – so there. This is how I balance my diet!
That said, Heidi always puts together a terrific salad for our “Girls Weekend” and she included Mango in one of her recent salads. That mango with that red onion – YUM! LOVE IT! She includes a lot of yummy stuff in her salads – I am not that advanced yet. I’ll get there. She did send me a “formula” for the perfect salad though – maybe she will let me share that with you one day!
So tell me, dear friend. Do you have a favorite salad? Maybe, like me, salad isn’t your favorite thing – I was only joking about salad BEING LIFE, Lord, I hope not – I’m in trouble if it is! I had a friend in high school who loved everything in a salad EXCEPT lettuce. He hated lettuce. He would return from the salad bar with a loaded bowl of everything but lettuce. Still makes me laugh. I am finding I like those bitter lettuces better than anything else these days – which totally doesn’t make sense – but, there it is. Maybe the enjoyment for that arrived in these arm wing flaps I seemed to have developed. LOL! (OK – that is a takeoff from a Facebook conversation I started having with a reader).
By the way, if you don’t follow Loaves and Dishes on Facebook, I would love to have you! (See the social media buttons right up there on that bar next to the “home” button? Just click those to go there). We talk about slightly different things over there- not ALL about food – some about life – and changes – and just stuff. I LOVE to hear from my readers. I really love you guys! You keep me going. It’s a huge blessing every time I hear the “ting” of my phone telling me that there has been a website comment or when I open Twitter, Facebook or Instagram to find that you have sent me a message. Love it. Thank you!
“I loved you at your darkest” ~ Romans 5:8