Summer shines through in this tangy and tasty Cucumber Mango Salsa. Eat it up for a refreshing snack in the middle of those hot summer days.
Summer is in full throttle in our neck of the woods. Neck of the woods? Does that sound hick-ish or what?! And I guess technically there aren’t any woods around us for miles. I mean, we’re in the desert over here. Forget woods, I’ll take just a wood if it could give me even the slightest bit of shade from this blazing sun.
Yes, I am being a drama queen. It’s hot, but I’m not dead yet. So I guess I should count my lucky stars.
I still haven’t learned yet to rise with the sun and run before it’s too toasty. I do get up and run every morning, but it’s usually not until around 7:00 and by then it’s already in the mid 80’s. Oh well, a little more sweat makes me feel like I got a better workout anyway.
Or better yet, maybe I just look like one of those fools subjecting themselves to unnecessary heat exposure like those people who exercise in sweats or warm up suits in the middle of the summer. Don’t they realize the only extra weight they’re losing is water weight, and if they are lucky enough to survive heat stroke, they’re more than likely to drink it back the second they get home anyway??? I just don’t get it.
Anyhow, on my sizzlingly splendid runs in the mornings, I’ve noticed quite a few houses around us have planter pots on their front porches. I noticed a lot of front porch pots in Utah this summer too. My parents have two massive ceramic planters with beautiful blooming flowers inside, and it was my favorite thing to look at each morning before I went out for a run.
So, I decided that since we’re now homeowners again, and I’m quite certain there is some secret homeowner’s code for improving the look of your home for your neighbors’ enjoyment, it was about time I spruced up our own front porch.
And this seemingly simple little thought in my head led me straight to the gardening section of Lowe’s where I discovered exactly how inadequate I am in the gardening/planting arena of my life. Even after asking questions to the employees, I was completely lost in my potting endeavor.
Basically over an hour later, I had a cart filled with a massive pot, a digger tool thingie, a few bags of pretty rocks, an assortment of cacti (I hear they’re hard to kill), a watering can, and some kind of dirt that I assumed would be the best at protecting these poor unfortunate plants from the wrath of my unskilled hands.
But let me tell you, my girls and I had the best time planting those cacti and creating our own perfect little desert oasis on our front porch. Well, we at least had a great time up until we realized that you really should have gloves when planting cacti that are covered in spikes and thorns and quills and stickers and whatever else those stabby awful things might be called. But other than that, it was a planting success.
I feel like I’ve really embraced being back in the desert, just like we embraced living by the beach. If we’re going to live in Arizona, by golly we are going to live like full blown cacti lovin’ Arizonans. So I see it only necessary that we eat like we’re a part of the southwest too. And if that means having this Cucumber Mango Salsa on repeat all summer long, then that’s what we’re gonna do. And I guarantee there won’t be any complaints about it.
Braelyn has been on a major mango kick. It doesn’t help that mango season was in full bloom right as we left Hawaii. Our neighbors were giving them to us left and right and my girls were in fruitful heaven. Boy have they missed those mangoes.
So when I see juicy plump mangoes sitting at the grocery store, begging to be eaten, I have to buy them even if they are a dollar a pop. They are worth every last penny. Usually they don’t last more than a day, but with this last batch I was able to sneak one away to make some fresh salsa fresca.
My mother-in-law was the inspiration for this pico de gallo. She had made a dip this summer that consisted of most everything in her garden: cilantro, tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, jalapenos, and even a little dill. Then she mixed it with an array of citrus juices: grapefruit, orange, and lime. It was delicious. I wanted to lick the bowl.
Once I decided to make a mango salsa, I knew that it needed some cucumber just like my mother-in-law’s. It gives it the perfect crunch and yields a cool mild flavor against the bold onions, cilantro, and lime. Plus, I seasoned the salsa with a bit of Tajin seasoning which gives it even more of a tangy, spicy kick. It’s quite the combo.
Ben absolutely loved this salsa and scooped it mile high onto his chicken tacos and quesadilla the next day. Don’t mess with a man and his salsa. But really, he kept commenting on how amazing the pico was. In fact, I just made another batch tonight just to be nice. That doesn’t happen very often around here. Just keeping it real.
So I invite you to embrace this summer heat and release your inner southwest soul. Some fresh mango salsa will do your body good. And please promise me you won’t be one of those track suit exercisers. Because if you are and I find you passed out on the side of the road, not even the coolness of this salsa will revive you. You’re just plain dead.
Are you more of a jarred salsa or a fresh pico de gallo fan?
- 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and roughly chopped
- 1 mango, diced
- ⅓ cup peeled and diced cucumber
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic*
- ½ teaspoon Tajin seasoning
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon chili powder
- Juice of ½ a lime
- ¼ cup roughly chopped cilantro
- Add all ingredients (except cilantro) into a small mixing bowl. Mix and toss with spoon or spatula until seasonings are evenly distributed. Toss in cilantro and gently mixed until incorporated.
- Cover tightly and refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours for optimal taste.
- Season salsa to taste by adding more salt, Tajin, or lime juice.
- Store lefovers in an airtight container for up to 1 week.