M is for… Mango!

Mango. It’s one of those exotic-sounding, tropical fruits. Not your average apple or banana. It’s also not one that I was really sure about at first. How do I know when it’s ripe? What should a “good” mango look/feel/smell like? Is it even possible to get “good” mango here in the middle of Wisconsin? Or is that like expecting to find good lobster here?

Finally, I just decided to go for it. And since all of the mangoes at the store looked the same, I just randomly selected a couple, brought them home, and stared at them some more. Now that I HAD the mangoes, what on earth was I going to do with them? Andy suggested that we just eat them. Perfectly good fruit, he said, is “ruined” by putting it in things. We should just enjoy the mangoes as God made them. (Translation: Don’t you dare mix them with black beans, cumin and garlic and serve it over quinoa.) 

Lucky for us, I didn’t listen. And we while we waited for the quinoa to finish cooking, we demolished half of the mango-black-bean goodness straight out of the bowl.

Even though I ran out of cilantro, it was still a super-tasty meatless Monday dinner!

Mango Black Bean Salsa with Quinoa

1 can of black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup of mango, diced (this is usually less than one mango, so you can give the fruit-lovers in your household something to snack on while dinner is coming together) 
1/4 cup sweet bell pepper, diced (red, yellow, orange… pick your favorite color!)
2 tablespoons onion, chopped (red, green… again, pick your favorite) 
1/2 cup of corn
1/2 of a jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cumin
1 garlic clove, minced

1 cup quinoa, uncooked
1 cup water
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon cumin

In a medium bowl, combine the black beans, mango, onion, corn, cilantro and peppers. Stir in the olive oil, salt, cumin and garlic. Set aside for 20 minutes or so to let the flavors mingle. (I’m sure the flavor would be better the longer you let this sit, but as I’ve mentioned before, I have a patience problem. 20 minutes is about the end of my attention span at dinner time.) 

In a medium saucepan, combine the water, chicken broth, quinoa and cumin. Bring to a low boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is done. Fluff with a fork.

Spoon the quinoa onto plates, and then top with the salsa. Extra salsa is great on chips, or straight from the bowl.

Adapted from Annie’s Eats