Green Mango or Papaya Salad

This is a quick version of a Green Mango salad, it’s not strictly traditional, and I haven’t included any hot chillies but of course you can add to taste.

If you don’t have some of the Asian herbs, substitute with the local version.You could also use your own choice of Asian dressing and bulk the salad up with some rocket or salad greens. As I said, it’s not strictly traditional but it’s very tasty. It serves four as a side dish, or two as a vegetarian meal.

Green Mango or Papaya Salad Recipe


60 ml white vinegar
50 g caster sugar (or less)
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp sesame oil
120 ml olive oil


1 wombok (Chinese) cabbage or 2 bags of bean shoots
handful of coriander
handful of Thai basil
handful of Vietnamese mint
1 large red capsicum – julienned
2 green mangoes or a large green papaya – they must be green and very hard

Suggested garnish:

2 fresh limes – cut into quarters
handful roast shallots
handful chopped roast peanuts
handful chopped spring onions
young banana leaves to line the bowl


Make the dressing beforehand

Make the dressing by combining all ingredients in a saucepan. Stir well over low heat until the sugar has dissolved.  Set aside to cool and then put it in a jar or bottle.  This makes more than enough for one salad.

Make the salad

Finely shred the wombok cabbage, stopping a bit before you get to the base which can be quite tough. Place in a very large bowl (not the one you are going to serve it in).

Peel and julienne the mango or green papaya. If you have a julienne tool, use it, otherwise try the Asian way but put a towel over your hand just to be safe!

Place all the salad ingredients in the large bowl, cover and set aside until you are ready to serve.

Just before serving, shake up the salad dressing and pour half over the salad. Mix the salad well with your hands and then taste.  Add more dressing if necessary, but the salad should only be lightly coated with dressing.  Transfer to a large serving bowl lined with banana leaves and add the garnish.  Serve immediately.

Nothing to fight over …

It’s unusually peaceful under the mango tree. The Mango War, which generally erupts around this time of the year has been called off due to a shortage of fruit.

The season started promisingly.  After good Spring rains the tree produced loads of flowers, but they disappeared almost overnight due to who knows what.  Perhaps to lack of follow up rain, or wind, or fungus or even Mango Beetles.  Which, by the way, I thought were beneficial insects until I finally identified them!

Mango Beetle
Mango Beetle

My superior camera skills enabled me to capture the entire mango crop in one frame.

The entire Mango crop!
The entire Mango crop!

This year, protecting the crop was easy, instead of netting I used a zippered lingerie bag.

New use for a lingerie bag
New use for a lingerie bag

There was just enough fruit to freeze one container of pulp and to make a delicious Green Mango salad.  And that was it – mango season over !

Green Mango Salad
Green Mango Salad

Now I am pinning all my hopes on the Kwai Muk, which is related to Jackfruit and Breadfruit.  It has a lovely sweet-tangy taste with a hint of sherbet.  The tree is fruiting for the first time and there aren’t many fruits, so I’m hoping that the Bower Birds haven’t noticed them.  Hope is important after all …




The Mango War …

There’s a battle going on in the garden… It’s between the fruit bats, rats, bower birds and me.  And no prizes for guessing who loses and gets the leftovers!

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The spoils of war!

This year has been particularly good for mangoes.  Spring was quite dry so there was no problem with fungus and due to an un-discovered leak in my main water pipe, the tree was provided with a generous (and expensive) underground water supply.

You’d think that my chances of scoring a few mangoes would be pretty high … but so far the score is:  me just three – wildlife probably fifty.

So I’ve netted a small section, and I patrol daily.  But somehow they beat me every time, invariably taking the one mango that I had decided would be ready to pick TOMORROW, they eat them unripe, and they even eat them through the netting.

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Two Satin Bower Birds discussing strategy …


I don’t mind sharing with the wildlife, but when I hear the bats squabbling enthusiastically over my mangoes as I lie in bed at night I get a bit cranky!