My elder sister taught me how to make her delicious mango salad. It’s one of my favorite Vietnamese goi.
Vietnamese mango salad requires a specific green mango called “xoi tuong” at the Vietnamese markets. This firm green mango is popular in Southeast Asia. It has a medium to dark green skin, with a firm texture and whitish-yellow flesh. The seed is not as hard. When you bite into this type of green mango, it will be firm, crunchy, and sour. As it ripens, the flesh softens but it will still be sour. Sometimes too sour that my jaw aches.
So far, I’ve only have seen this sold at the Vietnamese markets, some Chinese-Viet markets, and at an Asian farmer’s market in Texas, Central Florida, and Oklahoma. Due to the sourness of xoai tuong, Vietnamese dips it in with the traditional salt and chili dip, pickles it, or make mango salad out of it. I don’t know the English name for xoai tuong since I have never seen it in a western market before.
Don’t mistaken it with the green mangoes you commonly see at most western markets. Those are commonly the sweet Kent, Keitt, and Tommy Atkins. Those may appear green and firm but will are very juicy and sweet once ripen. The Palmer mango has the closest resemblance with xoai tuong.
For the mango salad
2 firm xoai tuong (green mangoes)
1 bunch of Vietnamese coriander (rau ram)
1 bunch of Thai basil
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 pkg of dried shrimp (7 oz)
2 Tbsp olive oil
For the mango salad dressing, mix the following:
1 Tbsp Viet Huong fish sauce
2 Tbsp warm water
1.5 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp mined garlic
1/2 tsp pepper flakes
Note: I doubled the amount for the mango salad dressing because I drizzle a lot over my goi.
1. Rinse and strain the herbs. Separate the leaves, discarding the stems. Chop the Thai basil leaves coarsely. Put the herbs into a large mixing bowl.
2. Peel and julienne the mangoes into a large bowl.
3. Minced the garlic. Soak the dried shrimp in luke warm water for about 3 minutes. Drain water and dry the shrimp on paper towel.
4. Heat up skillet with 2 Tbsp of olive oil. When oil is hot, add in mined garlic and dried shrimp. Reserve 1 tsp of minced garlic to a side. When garlic and dried shrimp turn to a golden crisp color, turn off stove.
5. Transfer the garlic and dried shrimp into a bowl. Set aside to cool. While the skillet is still hot, add in the remaining reserved minced garlic. When the toasted garlic and shrimp is cooled, add it into the mango salad bowl. Mix it up well.
6. Store mango salad and the dressing in the fridge. Serve cold. I use about 1 Tbsp of the sauce per 1 cup of mango salad. Mix and enjoy!