Thai green papaya and mango salad has been dancing in my head for days, maybe weeks. Temps here in South Florida have been 100+ every single day (usually by 9am) and I have been craving cool foods. Summer foods. Foods that delight the palate and soothe the core. I have also been craving snow but this salad was easier to accomplish.
This salad may very well be in the top ten of my personal favorite recipes that I have made. I did a play on traditional Thai Green Papaya and Mango Salads and then added some of my own twists – the big twist being that I used King Oscar sardines instead of fish sauce. I had a hunch that the flavor of the sardines would adequately replace fish sauce and that the sweet and spice of this salad would complement the salt of the sardines. The hunch paid off deliciously!
For those that have not experienced sardines or have a weird, omg-no-way, knee jerk reaction to sardines, I invite you to TRY IT. King Oscar has eco-friendly and sustainable fishing policies in place; these little babies are wild caught and pack a huge nutritional power punch; and they are FUN to work with! Read my full review on King Oscar here
Finding a green papaya was a bit challenging but Fresh Market produced a gorgeous one from Hawaii. Mangoes are plentiful like you cannot believe here in South Florida so that was no problem. For those in other areas, check Whole Foods, Fresh Market or similar markets that have a wide selection. You can also find the King Oscar Sardines at your local market (here is a store locator just in case). The garlic chili sauce can be found in Asian markets or specialty stores or you can use chili flakes or a red Thai chili.
This video on how to cut mango and papaya was THE BEST. These are slippery fruits and the video explains the perfect cut. The tomatoes were a last minute addition but after experiencing the flavor – I say they are mandatory. Lots of layers here in this salad but they are clean and you get the burst of each one in every bite. Flaking the sardines and tossing them with the fruit and dressing before putting the whole salad together also worked very well. The original dressing is meant to have fish sauce so this allows the flavors in the dressing to combine with the sardines before eating.
Best part besides the taste? IT IS HEALTHY!
OK Darlings! Away we go … what salads are you tossing around to keep cool? Leave me a comment about this salad and your super salad on The Hungry Goddess Facebook and while you are there, pop over and like King Oscar Seafood and say HI!
- 1 small to medium green papaya, julienned (see video above) – green on outside & inside will be light orange
- 1 small to medium green mango, julienned (see video above) – green on outside & flesh is yellow
- 1 cup bean sprouts
- 1/2 pint of cherry tomatoes cut in half
- 1/2 red onion cut in longer strips
- 1/2 tin of King Oscar Sardines in Extra Virgin Olive Oil (flaked, shredded by hand)
- 1/2 head of butter lettuce for serving (I used 1/2 of a small head)
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped finely
- 1/2 cup roasted cashews for garnish and crunch
- generous salt and pepper before serving
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1 Tbsp. of honey
- 1 teaspoon of garlic chili sauce (this gives it plenty of heat so start with 1/2 teaspoon & adjust to taste)
Juice your limes and then combine lime juice, honey and garlic chili sauce for dressing. Taste it to add more honey or chili to your preference.
Peel the papaya and mango with a Y-peeler or veggie peeler. Slice the papaya and mango into long thin strips. See the video above for a great technique. Discard the seeds from the papaya. Place sliced fruit in a bowl.
Take about half the sardines in the tin and flake/shred them by hand over the fruit. Add at least half the dressing and toss and set aside.
Slice tomatoes, onions, basil.
Toss all salad ingredients together (except for lettuce and basil) in the bowl with the dressing. Add some more dressing if needed. TASTE!
Layer your plate with butter lettuce and scoop out dressed salad onto plate. Garnish with basil and cashews. Add salt and pepper. If you need more dressing, have the reserve on hand.
Check out my Sweet Potato and Black Bean Hash with Jalapeno Sardines for another use of King Oscar Sardines!
**King Oscar is a sponsor for The Hungry Goddess and provides me with product and compensation to create recipes for their products. I cannot be bribed by sardines so all opinions are my own!