Despite the blowing around of snowflakes out my window, it is April 1st! It is officially spring time, but then again it is Ohio! No foolin on this April 1st! I will not be shaken on this thought. I know that warm days are coming, and I know that I have said that the last 3 weeks that I have posted… as it was snowing out! There is a reason for every season!
Let is snow, I say! I will create my own little oasis of freshness and spring warmth in the form of food! My sister tagged a photo of a quite lovely looking tropical salad. In typical order of events I quickly clicked on the link, clicked on the link that that salad came from and decided this would be a dish I would make! I have made it twice in one week! The first taste buds I tested it on were my House Church group. They have gotten used to my various creations and usually give them a go without much hesitation anymore, but lots of questions. I got thumbs up from all my carnivore friends and when I went back for seconds there was none to be found… So I knew it was a keeper.
It is packed with a mingling of sweetness, a tang, a tart and a little spice that all play well together to offer up to your taste buds a complex satisfaction! Not to mention the nutrient punch in this dish with all the veggies and fruit. Some of the main players are carrots, parsnip, pineapple and mango. Carrots of course (think vitamins and beta carotene), parsnips, which I had never had until about a year ago, are in the root family of carrots. They do have a little more sugar content although not sweet. What they offer up in nutrition is antioxidant properties, a good source of fiber, rich in B-complex vitamins, Vitamin C and trace minerals important for health such as iron, calcium, maganese, potassium and copper.
Not to mention all the goodness from the pineapple and mango in this bowl of tastiness! Pineapple has a proteolytic enzyme; bromelian that digests food by breaking down protein. Bromelain also has anti-inflammatory, anti-clotting and anti-cancer properties. Studies have shown that consumption of pineapple regularly helps fight against arthritis, indigestion. I know what you all are thinking… you just thought it taste good! Mango you say? They are rich in Vitamin C and A. They also offer up a good dose of B-6 vitamins and antioxidant fighting powers.
I think I you might be getting the idea that this is more than just another pretty dish! This is packed with healing powers ready to please you both in palate and in health. This is why it is important to eat a variety of fresh vegetables and fruit. They are all complex with what they offer and by eating a multitude of colorful fresh goodness you will be feeding/fueling your body with what it needs to give you health! Not to mention how tasty this stuff is!! 🙂
So with no further delay I will give you the recipe for the day. I served mine over some fresh mixed super greens of kale and spinach. I also of course made some changes from the original recipe. It calls for cauliflower too, but at $5.49 a head, I skipped it for now! I enjoyed this more at room temperature, kind of like if everything had just been freshly picked! Let me dream a little that I live in the tropics and have this delishisness in my back yard! Don’t be intimidated by the chopping involved in this salad. I like to think of chopping time as a little therapy and meditative. Just don’t get to meditative and chop any fingers! 🙂
Thanks to http://www.vanilla-and-spice.com for the inspiration
Tropical Detox Salad
Inspired by the taste space
2 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1/2 a small head of cauliflower, chopped (I skipped this since I didn’t have it!)
1/2 a large red pepper, finely diced (about 1 cup)
1 cup finely diced cucumber
1 ripe mango, finely diced
1.5 cups diced fresh pineapple
1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced (I subbed a few sprinkles of cayenne to taste)
5-6 tbsp chopped cashews (I used unsalted roasted cashews)
1/4 cup finely diced apricots
1/2 cup chopped fresh pineapple
Juice of one lime
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 tsp tamari
1 tsp mirin (I used ½ teas of sherry and ½ teas of apple cider vinegar)
1 tsp honey or agave nectar
1 tsp olive oil (skipped this)
Dash of herbamare or salt (I used Bragg’s 21 spice)
Add the parsnips, carrot, and cauliflower to the large bowl of a food processor. Pulse until veggies are finely minced, but not pureed (the texture should resemble rice).
Transfer to a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl, stirring to mix thoroughly.
To make the dressing, add all ingredients to a blender and puree until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired. Pour dressing over salad and toss to mix.
Store salad in the fridge until ready to eat. Serve cold or at room temperature. Season each serving with additional lime juice and/or herbamare if desired.
Makes 4-5 large servings.