Summer can be so scorching hot here in California that I simply cannot face the stove sometimes. Or be in the mood for anything too heavy for my tummy, especially in the middle of the afternoon heat. Do you get that way too?
During times like this, I like to fix myself a light and simple salad. This is when an easy, no-frills salad recipe can really save the day and maybe even improve my appetite. Just because you’re not in the mood to eat doesn’t mean you’re not hungry, right? One still has to eat and be satisfied!
What I usually go for are uncomplicated ingredients with big flavors. This arugula and mango salad with a zesty apple cider vinegar dressing checks all the boxes. Sprinkle the salad generously with sliced almonds and you have your protein fix for the afternoon, not to mention energy-boosting manganese and copper to help keep you going for the rest of the day. Check check check!
Mango, oh, mango, your tropical sweetness is a refreshing balm to my overheated soul. Pardon me for the drama, or blame the heatstroke, but the sweet-tart taste of mango really does brighten up this salad. And my mood too.
Seriously, mango reportedly contains Vitamin B-6, which promotes the production of serotonin, a hormone known to elevate mood and improve one’s feeling of general well-being. High in fiber, low in calories, and a mood booster rich in vitamins; what else can we ask for? What a treat this brightly-colored exotic fruit is!
Complementing that juicy fruitiness is the peppery bite of arugula leaves, which is believed to provide a natural cooling effect on the body. Quick tip: If the bitterness is bothersome, opt for young, paler leaves for a milder flavor.
According to Ayurveda medicine, consuming bitter leafy greens like arugula, dandelion, and kale promotes digestion, detoxifies the liver, and helps reduce cravings. Like other leafy greens, arugula is also hydrating, which is just what we need during this time of the year.
Fun fact: Arugula is also known as rocket in some parts of the world. Without going into detail about its etymology, let’s just say that the super green is a real blast off to health! Get it?
So the next time you need an easy and quick lunch fix, bring out the rockets and put together this highly nutritious yet super simple salad with a big taste! It also makes a great side dish and will be an elegant addition to the dining table or even the summer grill. Ready, set, blast off!
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon honey or agave syrup
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 bunch arugula
- 1 mango, cut into cubes
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
- To make the dressing, stir together apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey or agave, and extra virgin olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, place the arugula and mango. Drizzle in some of the dressing and toss to combine. Add more dressing if it's too dry but try not to overdress the salad. You can always serve more dressing on the side.
- Top with sliced almonds and serve. Enjoy!