Summer bring the best and the worst out of all of us. Think thirsty parched throats, prickly heat,…and again think tall cool glasses of sherbet, lazy vacation days, at least for school going kids, ice cream, swimming, and of course the season’s best – mangoes! Mango is so rightly called the king of fruits. I am yet to meet a person who does not like this ever so fragrant luscious fruit. Also think chilled salads when you are in no mood to cook your self along with food in a sweltering kitchen. To me, a pasta salad seemed just the answer to a hungry family and a not-ready-to-cook mom, that’s me. Teamed with warm grilled garlic bread, this filling salad left us so happy and content last weekend. I urge you too, do recreate this Indian-Italian piece de resistance in your homes this summer.
What’s good about this dish?
What’s good about this dish?
- The meal combines grains(pasta and whole wheat bread), dairy protein (from the curd), fruit and veggies too. Hence it is a complete one pot meal.
- Ripe mangoes and corn add to the vitamin A, B6, C and E levels of the meal, apart from the natural dietary fibre content.
- A good Potassium content in mangoes makes it a good fruit for people with hypertension. To make the dish more suitable for a hypertensive person, halve the salt used in the recipe.
- Fresh curd is rich in probiotics – the helpful bacteria that are needed for normal functioning and maintenance of stomach and intestines. Fresh curd is also rich in vitamins B and C. Even people with lactose intolerance can usually tolerate curd as the ‘lactose’ sugar is converted to ‘lactic acid’.
- Small elbow or bow tie pasta – 250 gm ( I used half of a 500 gm pack)
- Sweet corn kernels – 1/2 cup, steamed
- Ripe, firm mango (any variety) – finely dice and measure 1 cup.
- Fresh thick curd, and hung for an hour – 2 cups. Measure the cheese after curd is hung.
- Onion – very fine minced, 2 tbsp
- Sugar – 1/2 tsp
- Black/white pepper powder – 1/2 tsp
- Salt – 1 heaped tsp
- Mustard – 1 tsp ( I used ‘Fun foods’ brand - English Mustard)
- Fresh coriander leaves – finely minced, 2 tbsp
- Green capsicum (Bell Pepper) – finely minced, 1 tbsp
- Fresh cream – 2 tbsp (optional, I did not use any)
- Boil pasta for 8-9 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water. Leave to cool in the colander until dressing is ready.
- Steam the sweet corn kernels for 2 minutes in the microwave oven.
- Peel and dice the mango as finely as possible without squishing it!
- Combine all ingredients for dressing in a mixing bowl. Please do not omit any ingredient ( I did not have capsicum and sorely felt it’s absence). Adding cream is your choice though – it helps to give a smooth mouth feel, but does amp up the calories.
- Once the dressing is mixed in well, add the cooked pasta, corn, and mangoes and toss well.
- Chill well before serving. I chilled for an hour before garnishing it with more mango slices and served it up, accompanied with warm, cheesy garlic bread.
- Can use pineapple when mangoes are not in season.
- Can use other vegetables such as carrots too.
- Can use fresh or dried parsley or other fresh herb seasoning. Pudina / mint, however will be too overpowering a flavour.
- Do not omit any ingredient from the ‘dressing’ list. I did not have green bell pepper (capsicum) at the time of assembling this salad and sorely felt it’s need to perk up the dish!