This may well be my favorite broccoli salad yet! Probably because of the addicting Southeast Asian flavors. And… what’s not to love? Juicy chunks of mango, crunchy bell peppers, and a sweet chili lime dressing topped with toasted cashews. Ever since I made Healthy Broccoli Salad as a remake of the traditional recipe, I’ve been making variations with the common ingredient being of course, broccoli!
I was never a cruciferous veggie fan growing up, but it turns out it’s more about the preparation, and not so much that I don’t like broccoli! And, while I’ve always loved veggies smothered in a cheese sauce, I’m on a mission to create some new favorites that let the veggies shine through while leaving my taste buds fully satisfied!
I like to toast nuts and seeds in a cast iron pan on the stove for 2 reasons:
1. I hate to heat up an entire oven just to toast 1 cup of cashews.
2. If they’re in the oven where I can’t see them, I’m likely to burn them!
The key to successfully toasting nuts/seeds on the stove top, is low and slow. I use a cast iron pan (for even heat) over low heat, and it takes a full 15 minutes until they’re fully toasted. I put them on to toast, and by the time I’m done preparing the rest of the salad, they’re ready. If you try to toast them over a higher heat, you not only run the risk of burning them but they also toast on the outside leaving the inside still raw.
Peel the broccoli stem with a peeler until the tender core emerges. Slice up the stems, keeping them separate from the florets.
It’s best to do the stems first, by themselves. If you try to process them with the florets, the texture will be uneven because the stems take longer to break down. I’ve found that small batches are best for the most even texture (1 batch of stems, and 2 batches of florets).
For the bell pepper, cut it in half and remove the core and seeds.
Slice the pepper into 1/4″ – 1/2″ strips, and then cut across the strips to make cubes.
Peel the mangoes and cut a side off each end. Placing the flat side down, stand the mango up, and cut off both ‘cheeks’ on either side of the pit. Finally, cutting away from yourself, trim the mango pit of any extra fruit.
Once you’ve removed the pit, cut the mango pieces into 1/2″ cubes.
For the dressing, whisk all the ingredients except the avocado oil together. Slowly drizzle in the avocado oil while whisking until the dressing is emulsified. The dressing might separate if it sits for a bit, simply whisk it back together before tossing it with the salad.
If you can’t find avocado oil, olive oil is a good substitute.
This salad is best eaten right away because the mango chunks tend to turn a bit brown after a day in the fridge. I ate the leftovers the next day and the flavor was good, but not spectacular like the first day!
To make a simple meal: throw some chicken on the grill, or try this salad paired with Roasted Sweet Potatoes!
- 2 heads of broccoli, 1 pound - 10 ounces
- 2 mangoes, 1 pound
- 1 large red bell pepper, 10 ounces
- 1 cup cashews, toasted
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon sambal chili paste
- ¼ cup honey or maple syrup
- ¼ cup fresh lime juice
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 Teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup avocado oil
- Peel the stems of the broccoli and roughly chop them, keeping the stems separate from the florets. Cut the florets into 2" pieces.
- In a 14-cup food processor fitted with the chopping blade, process the broccoli in 3 batches. First the stems, and the next two batches process the florets into small pieces (refer to the pictures).
- Peel the mangoes and cut them into ½" pieces.
- Cut the bell pepper in half, removing the stem and seeds. Cut it into ¼" - ½" strips and then cut the strips crosswise to form cubes.
- For the dressing, whisk together all the ingredients except the avocado oil. Slowly drizzle in the avocado oil, whisking constantly until the dressing emulsifies.
- Toss all the salad ingredients together with the dressing and serve within 4 hours.
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