Mango Tango (Salsa)

Makes 1 1/2 C (approximately)

This dish came about on a whim.  My husband was braising then grilling short-ribs; it’s a long story with a delicious ending.  He said that some kind of sauce would be good.  Sauce led to salsa and salsa led to tango.  (In dance, I prefer tango to salsa and this “salsa” was more reminiscent of the former.)  As happens often in our kitchen, my husband and I bounce ideas off of each other until something magical happens, kind of like a tango.  We got lucky because the magic happened on the first try.  Since then (last week) I’ve made this tango 3 times and it has officially become a staple in our kitchen.  From the short ribs it also made it onto grilled chicken, fish and just as a dip for good ol’ (organic, non-gmo) corn chips.

So, what is it about mango that makes salsa more like tango?  Well, tango is sophisticated, elegant, beautiful, and sensual.  One would argue that so is the delicious, succulent flesh of ripe mango.  It’s a fruit native to tropical regions in the world (it’s the Colombian in me that craves this fruit like nothing else except maybe avocados) which is why during summer, it just seems natural to eat it.  It’s a great source of Vitamin A and other cancer fighting anti-oxidants.  It’s especially good for the gallbladder, reducing cancer risk by up to 60%.¹  New research has also shown that the quercetin, isoquercetin and other anti-oxidant compounds protects against colon, prostate, breast cancer and leukemia.²  Mangoes are also very alkalizing in nature which is good for our overall health.  (The body prefers to be slightly more alkaline and the Standard American Diet is NOT alkaline forming!)  Mangoes have potent digestive enzymes which help with poor digestion. They seem to contribute to healthy, glowing skin and they are an aphrodisiac.  Tango or what?

You’ll need:

1 C cherry tomatoes, halved

1 T extra virgin olive oil

1 champagne mango (the small, juicy, yellow ones), diced

1 scallion, thinly sliced

2-3 T cilantro, chopped (I go heavy on cilantro because I love it so I used a full 1/4 C)

1/2 jalapeño, diced (If you’re not a chicken like me, go for the full jalapeño, but 1/2 seemed to be just the right amount of heat. For extra kick, add some of the seeds, but do so with caution.  Also, don’t do anything crazy like touch your eyes after handling the jalapeño!)

2 T fresh squeezed lemon juice (limes would be fantastic, but I didn’t have any)

Sea salt, to taste

To make:

1. Take half of the tomatoes and add to a saucepan with the olive oil over low-medium heat.  Cook for about 3-5 minutes until just soft, to help release some of the juices.

2. Place all the tomatoes in a bowl with the rest of the ingredients.  Adjust the lemon juice and salt accordingly.  Let sit in the fridge for 15-30 minutes to let all those flavors dance and mingle and love each other.  Then remove a few minutes before serving.

3.  Serve over any protein, as a dip for chips, add avocado and make a salad.  The possibilities for this tango are endless!

4. Enjoy!

¹Rebecca Katz, The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen

²http://realfoodforlife.com/10-health-benefits-of-mangos/

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