Why am I enamored of this green mango salad?
Is it the medley of colors that makes me swoon? A motley mix of yellow and red. White tinged with deep purple and specks of lush green strewn here and there.
Or is it the tartness that makes me pucker with incomparable delight? Sour mangoes purposely picked before they ripen. Plump tomatoes. Crisp red onions with notes of sweetness. Tossed together then copiously dressed in briny fish sauce. In pungent shrimp paste for the more audacious. More adventurous.
Or is it the memory of home that makes me longingly crave it? Scorching summer days during Lent. Restless. Meatless to boot. Days made endurable by a plate of green mango salad and fried fish seasoned simply with rock salt and freshly ground black pepper. Skin seared to a crisp. Flecked with toasted garlic. Rice included, of course. A true Filipino meal wouldn’t be complete without hot steamed rice, would it?
It is a meal so simple yet so satisfying.