Thursday, January 26, 2012

RPI: Mission Mango...

I know what you're thinking. I thought it too. Unfortunately, I lost this first challenge of Rock, Paper, Ingredient. Haydn's selection? Mango. Are you kidding me?? What on Earth is sustainable or healthy or happy about fuel-laden mangoes??! Those of you that follow Gastronomical Sovereignty (no, I won't mention my other blog in every single post...) will know that I eat - which is to live - by the season. Locally. Organically. Happily. So accepting this first challenge was actually a bit of a challenge for me.

I fought with my ethical stance on food and whether or not I was prepared to ditch my morals in the event that Haydn selected something that I ordinarily wouldn't have. After all, it's his blog too! Shouldn't we do some of the things he wants to do? Ultimately, I acquiesced to mangoes this week. But I'm vetoing any further unhappy produce. At least for myself and for future RPI assignments.

From now on, there are rules:
  1. You do not talk about Rock, Paper, Ingredient.
  2. You DO NOT talk, about Rock Paper Ingredient.
Hang on, wrong rules...
  1. The ingredient selected by the winner of Rock, Paper, Ingredient must be locally (Pacific Northwest) in season and somehow accessible.
  2. Refer to rule #1.
That being said... I rocked that shit. Mangoes are rad. I'm not sure I've actually even eaten a mango before but as of this week, I ate 3. And they were juicy, brilliant yellow in color, and a massive pain in the ass. Do you have any idea what a process it is to get the fruit off the little buggers? I googled it and figured it out but it took me a while. Aye.

The flesh of mango is delicately sweet, floral in scent, pliable, and moist. The juices trickled over my fingers, across my wrists, down my arms and onto the counter - I made quite a mess! Oh the succulence of it all!

Note to self: Enjoy it while the left-overs last, sister. No more mangoes for you!

Mangoes 2 Ways: Firely Lime Sauce & Tempura Sliced Mango
Ingredients for the Sauce:

2 Mangoes.
1 Lime for juice.
1 Bird's Eye Chili, thinly sliced (you may remove the seeds for less heat if desired).
1 Tbsp Ginger, peeled & finely grated.
1 Tbsp Local Organic Honey.

Ingredients for the Tempura:

1 Mango.
1 C All Purpose Flour.
1 Tsp Baking Powder.
1 C Iced Soda Water.
1 Free-Range Organic Egg.
2 to 3 C Vegetable Oil for frying.
Kosher Salt & Fresh Cracked Black Pepper.

What to Do for the Sauce:

 To begin, remove the flesh of 2 of the mangoes. Mangoes come with very large seeds in the center which you can't cut through. Therefore you must cut away the "cheeks" (fleshy sides) of the mango, carefully dice/cube the flesh and peel it away from the skin.

Chuck the flesh into a food processor along with the ginger, lime juice, honey, and just a touch of salt and pepper. Puree until the mixture becomes soft and silky. Gently mix in the chili and set aside. Ta da!

As you can see from the photo, I served my mango with some pan-seared halibut. If you wish to do this, just pat your fish dry with some paper towel, and season well on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat a bit of oil and/or butter over medium heat in a frying pan, and once the butter starts to sizzle, gently place fish in the pan. Cook 3 - 4 minutes, flip, and continue cooking a further 3-4 minutes. Fish will be done if flaky and white. Remove from the heat and set fish on a surface, covered in foil, and let rest about 5 to 10 minutes. Top with some pea-shoots and a little green onion.

Otherwise, it would also work very well with chicken also or maybe some chick-pea patties.

Eat! (almost...)....

What to Do for the Tempura'd Mango:

As above, cube or slice the mango flesh from the cheeks. Set aside.

Pour your oil into a deep wok and heat over a medium-high setting. The oil is ready when a 1" cube of white bread dropped into the oil browns in 60 seconds; that oil temperature will be about 365 degrees F. Be careful to not heat too high and keep water away from the oil because water + oil = explosive disaster. Literally.

As the oil heats, mix together the flour and baking powder. Set aside.

In a medium sized mixing bowl, gently whisk the egg. Add the cold water and mix well. Throw in the flour mixture and stir to just barely combine. Do not over mix or  the starches in the flour will active and you'll end up with a very "doughy" tempura.

Lightly dredge the pieces of mango in the mixture and very carefully drop them into the hot oil. Always drop away from you (think of it like pushing the food away rather than pulling toward) to avoid splashing yourself with oil. Watch your fingers!

Allow to brown and crisp up, turning often to ensure even cooking. Once golden and crisp, remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and let drain on a side of paper towels. Serve immediately.



This post is linked up with This Chick Cooks; Full Plate Thursday; Tasteastic Thursday; Tasty Tuesdays; Tuesday Talent Show.


  1. Hi Haydn and Kristy,
    This is an awesome recipe. We just love Mango and you have created a very tasty recipe. Your photo presentation is outstanding. Hope you are having a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

    1. @ Miz Helen: thank you so much for your well thought out, meaningful, and generous comments. They're always appreciated! XO - K.

  2. okay one: that description if rock, paper, ingredient is like...THE BEST THING I'VE EVER READ.

    two: this is, of ALL the blog themes i've ever seen - BY FAR THE BEST.

    so clever, so fun.

    1. Who would have ever thought that Kristy and I would have made something simple into a competition. PS, although we both took part in it, I'm going to take 98% of the credit because I am stronger.

    2. you're freakin me out with all your capital letters lately! XO - K.

  3. Congratulations!
    Your recipe is featured on Full Plate Thursday this week. Hope you have a great week end and enjoy your new Red Plate!
    Come Back Soon,
    Miz Helen

    1. Thanks Miz Helen!! I'm so pumped! I love my plate! Could I have any more exclamation points in this reply?!