Hello Everyone and welcome to an all new theme on Amcarmen’s Kitchen for the month of February! Well okay, it’s not exactly a new theme, but more like we get to play around with a new fruit for this month! In my very first post for the year I mentioned that it’s going to be a FRUITFUL year on the blog. Last month we went nuts for Coconuts and now we’re moving onto Mangoes!
From what I know, mango season here in the Philippines isn’t until March but you can already spot an abundance of mangoes at the markets for a reasonable price (well they are cheaper than a couple of months ago when they weren’t in season), and since they’re here early, I’ve been non-stop playing around with them for the dishes that I will be sharing with you guys over the next couple of weeks.
Also, just to note, I’m going to stray away from Filipino food for a while since I’ve been sharing dishes from that cuisine for the past 4 months on the blog ever since I’ve been back here. It’s not that I have anything against it (quite the opposite actually), it’s just that I want to continue exploring and enhancing my skills and techniques in other cuisines. Amcarmen’s Kitchen is afterall, A Third Culture Foodie.
Thai food is one of the many favourite cuisines that I enjoy. It is also a cuisine that I’m constantly craving for from time to time, whether it’s heading to my favourite Thai restaurant or cooking up a Thai storm in the kitchen. I think my tolerance for spice was developed from this cuisine, though I am definitely not at their level of tolerance. Every time I order a Thai dish, I keep forgetting to tell the waiter to make it “less spicy” or to only add 1 chilli. I then end up tearing up, sniffling endlessly and needing to extinguish my mouth, followed by fiery trips to the bathroom after. I remember when I used to have Som Tam everyday for lunch from a food stall during events that I worked and forgot to tell the lady to make it less spicy – she ended up adding 10-15 pieces of chillies into the dish. The following day, I asked her to make it less spicy, but for them less spicy was still about 5-6 chillies in. I ended up having to tell her to only add 1 chilli the day after that and she looked at me weirdly.
Even though there are many recipes online that you can follow, I’ve had the opportunity to be taught by my Thai Aunt, and also learnt a few dishes from Chef Sujet Saenkham of Spice I Am, Australia, who I met last year in Brunei during an event I worked for the Thailand Grand Fair. Tonight’s dish is one I learnt from him, but I’ve replaced the green papaya for green mango instead. Note that, it’s not so much about how green the mango is – as long as it’s sour!
PREP TIME 15-20 MINS | COOKING TIME — | SERVES 4-6
- 2 green mangoes, peeled and julienned
- 3 pcs long green beans, cut into 1-inch long stalks
- 2-3 red bird’s eye chillies, seeds in and roughly chopped (more if you want a spicier kick to your palette)
- 2 small tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
- 1 small red onion, roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp dried salted shrimp
- 2 tbsp roasted peanuts
- 1 & 1/2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 & 1/2 tbsp fresh lime or lemon juice
- 1 tbsp palm sugar
- Spring Onions, to garnish
- Lightly crush the garlic and chillies large and deep mortar and pestle.
- Add the dried salted shrimp together with the long green beans. Pound a few times to slightly bruise the beans. Add in the roasted peanuts and lightly crush.
- Next, add in the fish sauce, lime/lemon juice, and palm sugar. Lightly grind until the sugar has dissolved into the mixture.
Tip: At this point, taste the mixture to see if the balance of flavours is to your liking. Add more fish sauce if it needs more salt, or add more lime juice if it needs more acidity. Add more palm sugar if the other flavours are too overpowering. Want more spice? Crush more chillies!
- Add in the chopped tomatoes and lightly crush to bruise them a bit, followed by the julienned green mango and softly pound. Use a spoon to mix all the ingredients around while pounding. Be careful as to not over pound, grind, or crush the ingredients.
- Garnish with a spring onion and serve as a main or side dish. Enjoy!
– Ally xx