Nigel Slater’s Recipes for Mango and Carrot Salad, Rum Snaps and Mango Fool | Food

Jhere is a wide, shallow dish on the kitchen counter, housing a succession of seasonal fruits that need to be brought to maturity. Figs whose skin tears if one touches the other; rust-colored freckled apricots and, in late summer, plums that bruise and weep if heaped in a tray. This is where I ripen avocados and papayas and tend to fat-bottomed pears until they reach their brief moment of perfection. In May and June, the bowl is a haven for the mangoes – small, smooth and heavy with juice, their skin as yellow as custard, their flesh as shiny and cheerful as a bunch of marigolds. As they are ready, and against all rules, I chill them in the fridge. A cold mango dripping with juice is an early summer treat beyond measure. Round or oval and as tender as a bruise, few fruits are so pleasant to the touch. They look like a bar of soap worn down from many uses, and the smell – sweet, honeyed, a little cloying – hangs in the warm summer air in the kitchen. A few come disguised, festooned with garlands the color of Quality Street wrappers, which I leave in place. When the fruits are ripe, they could offer us a teasing pearl of nectar.

I eat them as I go, sliced ​​with a razor-sharp pocket knife, their flat pits sucked bare of its sweet flesh. I’ll also mash them to mix into whipped cream or thick yogurt as an impromptu dessert, or slice them into matchsticks and toss them with crunchy carrots and a warm vinaigrette of lime juice, mint leaves and hot, crunchy pieces of chile.

Mango and carrot salad with spicy tomato sauce

When serving the salad, don’t forget to drizzle with a little lime and herb vinaigrette. For 4 people

For the salad:
cucumber 100g
carrots 175g
pepper 1, small yellow or orange
radishes 100g
snow peas 50 grams
mango 1, medium
rice noodles 75g
Cherry tomatoes 12

For the dressing:
tomatoes 175g, red, medium
olive oil 50ml
lime juice 1½ tbsp
Garlic 1 small clove
salt ½ teaspoon
Red pepper 1, small
dried oregano 1 teaspoon
sugar a pinch
crispy chili in oil 3 teaspoons (to taste), Lao Gan Ma brand

To finish:
limes juice of 2
coriander leaves a handful
mint leaves a handful

Fill a large bowl with cold water and ice cubes.

Prepare the salad: peel the cucumber, then cut it in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds and wet kernel with a teaspoon and discard. Cut the flesh into small sections and then into large matchsticks. Plunge them into ice water. Scrub the carrots (peel them if they are large) then cut them into thick slices and cut them into matchsticks of similar size and add them to the cucumber. Cut the pepper in half, remove the seeds and core, then cut the pepper into thin strips. Peel the radishes, cut them finely, then add them with the pepper to the ice water. Now finely grate the snow peas and add them to the water.

Put the kettle on to boil. Peel the mango, cut out the flesh from the pit, then cut it into thin strips. Place them in a large mixing bowl. Put the noodles in a bowl, then pour boiling water over them and let stand for 10 minutes. (If your noodles came with different manufacturer’s instructions, follow them.) Cut the cherry tomatoes in half and add to the mango.

Prepare the vinaigrette: cut the tomatoes in half and place them in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add olive oil and lime juice. Peel the garlic and add it to the blender, then add the salt, the red pepper (seeded) and the dried oregano and the sugar. Toss into a thick vinaigrette.

Stir in the Lao Gan Ma and check the seasoning – you can increase the chili or add more salt or sugar to taste. The dressing should be quite spicy, as the heat will be softened by the mango and other vegetables. Drain the vegetables and drain them, then drain the noodles and add everything to the mango and tomatoes. Pour in the vinaigrette and gently mix everything together. If you like cilantro, add the leaves to the salad and transfer to a serving platter. To finish: put the lime juice in a small bowl. Chop the cilantro and mint and mix with a little crumbled sea salt. Spoon some lime juice and herbs over the top of each bowl.

Mango Yogurt Crazy

“The idea is to run ribbons of mango into the yogurt”: mad mango yogurt with rum sesame chips. Photograph: Jonathan Lovekin/The Observer

For 4 people

mangoes 3 ripe
limes 2 or 3
thick yogurt 250ml

Peel the mangoes with a small sharp kitchen knife. Slice the flesh off the stone and put it in the bowl of a food processor. Finely grate one of the limes. Roll the limes on the work surface, pressing down firmly with the palm of your hand – this will soften the limes and you will be able to extract more juice. Cut the limes in half and squeeze the juice into a small bowl (you need at least 4 tablespoons of juice.) Add the grated lime zest to the mango and juice. Purée until smooth, but be careful not to overwork the mixture, which will make it gooey.

Pour the yogurt into a mixing bowl and stir until smooth and thick, then add most of the puree and stir gently. The idea is to have ribbons of mango flowing through the yogurt, rather than mixing everything all at once. Serve the mango yoghurt in glasses or cups with the rest of the purée and a little zest and the sesame crunchies underneath.

Rum Sesame Snaps

Yields about 12

golden caster sugar 60g
brown sugar syrup 60g
Butter 60g
dark rum 1 teaspoon (or cognac)
plain flour 50 grams
grounded ginger ½ teaspoon
Sesame seeds 2 teaspoons

Preheat the oven to 170°C/thermostat 3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Heat the sugar, golden syrup and butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. As soon as the butter and sugar have melted and the mixture begins to bubble, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the rum, flour and ginger. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Place mounds of the mixture, about 2 heaping teaspoons, on the baking sheet, leaving plenty of space between them. They will spread out in the oven. Bake for about 7-8 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes, then carefully remove with a palette knife. Place on a cooling rack and let set. I like to give them a bit more character by twisting them as you put them on the rack. Serve with the bishop.

Follow Nigel on Twitter @NigelSlater

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