Jicama Mango Slaw
As the warmer summer months are quickly approaching (at least here, in sunny Florida), many of us start to crave lighter, healthier foods. And with Cinco de Mayo around the corner, there’s no better time to introduce one of the lightest, most flavorful salads I love to eat: Jicama Mango Slaw!
My first time enjoying a version of this delicious slaw occurred when it arrived as an accompaniment to my favorite vegan enchilada at a high-end Mexican restaurant. I was so enamored with the light crunch of the jicama, balanced with the tartness and acidity of citrus, and the sweetness of the velvety mango. A little bit of cilantro added another whole flavor dimension.
Not familiar with jicama? This root vegetable is indigenous to Mexico and Central America, and is not so well-known in the United States. Despite it’s relative obscurity, jicama can actually be found in the produce section of most grocery stores. It’s got a great crunch and mild flavor, is traditionally eaten raw, and is often coated with lime and chili powder. From a nutrition perspective, it’s low in calories and high in fiber. Jicama is also rich in inulin, a prebiotic that helps to feed the healthy bacteria in our gut, and is a great source of the antioxidant vitamins A and C!
This version of jicama mango salad is slightly nontraditional in that it also includes some colorful red pepper and thinly sliced red-onion. These both provide additional flavor and nutrition. And rather that use lime as the only citrus component, a little bit of freshly squeezed orange juice adds a nice flavor and sweetness. It’s a great side dish to balance out a spicy, Mexican-style entree!
- 1 jicama, peeled (I use a carrot peeler) and cut into matchsticks
- 1 red pepper, cut into matchstick-size pieces
- 1-2 ripe mangoes (make sure these aren’t too ripe as they’ll be too soft to maintain their form), cut into strips (see picture above)
- 1/4-1/2 medium red onion, sliced thinly (optional, can omitted)
- 1/3-1/2 cup chopped cilantro (add more or less to taste)
- Cayenne to taste (optional, if you like a little spice)
- Juice from 2-3 small to medium limes
- Juice from 1/2 small orange (or a large clementine)
- 2-4 tablespoons agave (vegan) or honey (sweeten to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (more to taste or can be omitted)
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and refrigerate for an hour (or longer) prior to serving.
- This will keep for a few days in the refrigerator and is great for leftovers