mango & halloumi salad

23rd December 2009

I know it is the festive season when I receive a crate of home-grown mangoes delivered to my door.  It has become a ritual each year in early December, which also happens to be the mango season in North Queensland, Australia, for Dad to send down a supply of Bowen mangoes.  This type of tree grows in everyone’s backyard in North Queensland, and it is vital that they are picked early before the fruit bats begin their scavenging and hundreds are left to rot on the ground.  The Bowen mango, along with the mess it creates, is a nuisance in North Queensland, however elsewhere it is a treasure.

These treasures ended up on my doorstep and were green upon arrival, but ripened quickly in the 30+ temperatures.  I gave many away, which were accepted warmly.  Mine had to be used quickly, as I was leaving on holiday to Israel.  I tried a variety of ways to fully appreciate their flavour – smoothies, fresh as is, on my morning oatmeal, and in salads.  One particular combination worked very well – mango, halloumi, cherry tomatoes, avocado and rocket.  Sweet, salty, astringent, soothing and bitter flavours all combined in one bowl.  The version in the photos omits the avocado.   A perfect Summer festive salad!

As I am writing this, it is hard to believe that a week or so ago, I was making this salad in the air-conditioned comfort of my house in the scorching heat of a Queensland Australian Summer.  Now, I am on the other side of the world, rugged up on Stacey’s sofa, feeling the warmth of the fire and drinking a sage and mint herbal tea.  So, wherever you happen to end up this festive season, whether you are celebrating Christmas, Hannukah or other religious festivals, Stacey and I send season’s greetings to all.

mango rocket & halloumi salad

Serves 2 – 4

ingredients :

1 mango, diced

125g halloumi, diced in 2cm lengths (quantity to preference)

2 generous handfuls of rocket (arugula)

a handful of cherry tomatoes halved

1 medium avocado, sliced

juice ½ a lemon

cracked black pepper

1 Tblsp olive oil

½ Tblsp balsamic vinegar

½ tsp honey mixed in a little hot water

preparation :

Pan fry halloumi over medium-high heat.  When brown on one side, turn and add the juice of ½ lemon and cracked black pepper.  Remove from heat when brown, drain on absorbent pepper and set aside to cool slightly.

While the halloumi is frying, toss rocket, mango and tomatoes in a bowl with pepper to taste.  I do not add extra salt as the halloumi is very salty. Add halloumi and avocado.

Whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar and honey.  Toss in the salad.  Serve as a side salad or on own as a light meal.

Goodness shared by Donna

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