OK, this is a good one. I have little mental capacity left, and am holding on to my reserves in order to get necessary work done before bed, never mind packing for Tofino (we leave tomorrow – I hope), but I can offer up this. (I’ve been up before 5:30 for almost two weeks, and not compensating at bedtime – I feel like I’m 90, with far fewer IQ points. How do people function on no sleep?)
The good news – Ataulfo mangoes are here, which means there’s a case of them ripening on my kitchen counter, and I’m cutting one for W approximately every five minutes. (Ataulfos are the slightly smaller, slimmer, yellow-green mangoes you might start seeing in the produce section – they’re creamier, smoother and lack the sinewy fibers you may associate with the big green-red Haden or Tommy Atkins varieties that are hardier and thus available year-round.) There are a ton of things I’d love to do with them, but I suspect most are destined for a spoon, or W’s Empire Strikes Back bowl. But one did make it into a batch of quinoa salad:
Curried Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Mango
1 cup quinoa
1-2 ripe mangoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 red or yellow pepper, chopped
1/4 English cucumber, chopped
2-3 green onions or a chunk of purple onion, chopped
2 cups (packed) baby spinach, torn or sliced (optional)
half a 19 oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
handful of torn cilantro (optional)
1/4 cup canola oil
2-4 Tbsp. white wine or white balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp. mango chutney, chopped if chunky (optional)
1 tsp. honey
1 tsp. curry powder or mild paste
1/4 tsp. cumin
Rinse quinoa well under cool water in a fine sieve, then cook in a pot of boiling salted water over medium heat until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. (Just like you’d cook pasta.) Drain well, return to the pot, put the lid back on and let it steam – this will produce fluffy quinoa – until cooled.
Combine the oil, vinegar, chutney, honey, curry and cumin in a jar or small bowl and shake or whisk to blend. If you like, season the dressing with salt and pepper.
Put the quinoa, mango, vegetables and beans in a large bowl, drizzle with dressing and toss until well coated. Serves 4-6.