Even though rain and wind still seems to haunt the California Summers every now and then, the bright sunshine, the long sunny days and the abundance of summer produce in the Farmer’s market is enough evidence that Summer is finally here! And with summer comes the promise of sweet and ripe Mangoes – the lovely color, the sweet taste, the rich and fibrous velvety texture – all make Mangoes the king of fruits. I adore mangoes, and the flavor of this delicious fruit shines through in this classic Summer Salad, where it is combined with the tangy sweetness of clementines, and the nutty, fragrant taste of fresh fennel.
As most of the people in the US prepare to turn on the heat with their grills on this memorial Day weekend, I’m sure you’ll be having a Salad to pair with your grilled delicacies. And this refreshing Summer Salad will the perfect choice. The original recipe at Woman’s Day did not include Mangoes. But as I was dreaming about the flavor in the salad, somehow mangoes seemed to click through my mind, and I knew in an instant that they would be a great addition to this salad recipe. The baby greens, with arugula, purple cabbage and spinach leaves, create a perfect contrast in taste to the sweet fruits, and the candied walnuts – let’s just say they are like the Icing on the Cupcake! [photo credit:Charles Schiller]
Fruity Summer Salad with Mixed Greens, Mangoes, Clementines, Fennel & Candied Walnuts
Makes about 4 small servings
1⁄2 cup sugar
1 cup walnut pieces
Salad & Dressing
1⁄3 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
1⁄3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1⁄4 tsp salt
1⁄4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 small bulb fennel (anise), stalks and leaves removed, bulb halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
10 oz mixed baby salad greens (about 12 cups)
6 small tangerines or clementines, peeled and sectioned
2 cups of firm ripe mangoes – diced into small pieces
1⁄2 cup pitted black olives
For the Candied Walnuts, line a baking sheet with nonstick foil. Put sugar and 2 tbsp water in small saucepan. Swirl pan to moisten sugar evenly. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook until sugar melts and caramelizes to a rich amber-brown color, but do not let it burn. Remove from heat, add walnuts and stir with a fork to coat nuts evenly. Transfer the nuts to prepared baking sheet, separate them to form a single layer and prevent sticking to one another. Then allow them to cool until caramel hardens.
Whisk all the Dressing ingredients in a large bowl to blend. Add fennel and red onion; let stand 15 minutes to soften slightly, as the flavors permeate within. Add the bag of washed mixed greens. Top with the clementine halves and the mango pieces, followed by the candied walnuts. Toss gently to mix well. Transfer to 4 serving bowls or salad plates.
Chef’s Tips: The candied walnuts can be made in advance and stored in an airtight container at room temperature for upto 4 days. The dressing can also be made ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to serve.
This is a really healthy hearty and filling salad; its like a bowl of vibrant colors and fresh fruity flavors all mingled to create a refreshing meal.