My Favorite Mango Salsa Recipe (and a giveaway for a $75 Whole Foods gift card!)


I love beautiful and simple food that is nourishing to the body and the soul. I wrote Fresh: Nourishing Salads for All Seasons and Ladled: Nourishing Soups for All Seasons as another outlet of sharing this love of mine. I also love sharing practical tips on how to make a real food diet work on a real life budget. Find me online elsewhere by clicking on the icons below!

mango salsa- a must try recipe. Perfect for chicken or fish tacos, and more!.jpg

This is an absolute favorite salsa of mine. Sweet mangoes are paired with crisp red onions, flavorful cilantro and garlic, spicy jalapeno, and lime. It’s a simple mango salsa, but surprisingly complex and very flavorful. A great mix of sweet, spicy, savory, tart, and salty. Mango salsa goes well with grilled fish or chicken, is divine in tacos, lovely served with corn chips, and I’ll even enjoy it straight!

Whole Foods Gift Card Giveaway!

I’m sharing this today because Whole Foods Market asked if I’d like to do a gift card giveaway and a share a recipe using their mangos. And because I absolutely adore mangos, I said yes! (And I thought you all would love a chance to get a gift card too.). So gifted with my own Whole Foods card, I ran to my local store where they had a large display of mangos front and center. People, now is the time to buy mangos. These were some of the most perfect mangos I’ve gotten in a long time! Mine were perfectly ripe and tender. My particular store also had them at a great price.

Mango Salsa

All good reasons to enjoy mango salsa. We enjoyed our delicious salsa with organic corn tortillas, pan-fried organic chicken, and avocado. Delicious!

Delicious Mango Salsa! Perfect for chicken and fish, and eating with chips!

By the way, if you go to Whole Foods, look for (Amazon affiliate link) Jackson’s Honest Potato Chips. They are incredibly delicious and healthy, as they are fried in coconut oil. As a big fan of coconut oil, these are a favorite, and Whole Foods is the only place in my area that carries them. This potato chip company is a small company, and I love supporting the good food they are selling! (And nope, they didn’t even pay me to say that. ;-) )

Other Mango Recipes:

I love using mango in a variety of ways. It’s a delicious treat plain, but it’s also great in smoothies, popsicles, and more savory-sweet recipes.

Plus, If you haven’t tried a fruit based salsa yet, do it. They are so delicious! This mango salsa is my favorite fruit salsa, but this Black Bean and Pineapple Salsa is another lovely way to enjoy a fruit salsa.

My Favorite Mango Salsa Recipe (and a giveaway for a Whole Foods gift card!)
Prep time:
Total time:

Makes about 1½ cups. The most important thing to know about making salsa is this: Don’t be afraid of mixing things up, and playing around with ratios of ingredients. Love cilantro? Use a bigger amount. Hate garlic? Leave it out. Taste and as you make it, and adjust until you get it just right.
  • 3 small/medium ripe mangos
  • Half a bunch of cilantro (I love cilantro so I used the big half)
  • 1-3 garlic cloves, peeled and put through a garlic press
  • 1-2 limes
  • ¼-1/2 red onion
  • ½- 1 jalapeno pepper
  • Unrefined salt
  1. Using a small paring knife or vegetable peeler, peel the mangos, and then cut the mango flesh off the core (eating any of the mango flesh left on the core is cook’s treat). Dice the mango into small, bite-sized pieces, and put in a bowl.
  2. Wash, and shake dry the cilantro, and then cut the leaves from the stems. Roughly chop.
  3. Peel the red onion, and cut in half. Dice finely one half of the red onion. Add half of this amount to the bowl, and keep back the other half.
  4. Stem the pepper (you may want to either coat your hands with oil or use gloves to protect your skin), and cut in half. If you want it less spicy, remove the seeds. Chop really finely. Add to bowl.
  5. Cut the limes in half and sprinkle over this mixture and give a couple sprinkles of salt to the mixture as well. Gently mix. Taste test. Does it need more salt? More onions, more chopped pepper? More lime juice? More cilantro? Adjust flavors, if needed. Serve right away, or allow flavors to meld for at least one hour.
Possible additions: Black beans, seeded tomatoes, or chopped red bell pepper.

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Pan-seared Halibut with Melted Cherry Tomatoes and Tarragon (& review of The Nourished Kitchen cookbook)


I love beautiful and simple food that is nourishing to the body and the soul. I wrote Fresh: Nourishing Salads for All Seasons and Ladled: Nourishing Soups for All Seasons as another outlet of sharing this love of mine. I also love sharing practical tips on how to make a real food diet work on a real life budget. Find me online elsewhere by clicking on the icons below!

pan-seared halibut with melted cherry tomatoes and tarragon

Tender and moist, halibut is cooked quickly on the stovetop and then graced with the bright flavors of bite-sized tomatoes, gently cooked into a simple, yet flavorful sauce. This is a perfect example of the simple, delicious food that Jenny from Nourished Kitchen produces time and time again.

And that’s why I am thrilled to share this beautiful recipe from her incredible new cookbook (amazon affiliate link), The Nourished Kitchen: Farm-to-Table recipes for the Traditional Foods Lifestyle. This book is a real gem. Truly. Each section helps you know how to serve food from the sea, pasture, garden, field, wild, orchard, range, and larder. It’s real food at its best.

What I love about Jenny’s recipes is that they allow the true flavors of the food to shine. Her writing style is warm, reassuring and poetic, and her photos do justice to the natural beauty of the food without trying to manipulate food into something it is not (can you tell I’m a fan?). The section this recipe comes out of (from the waters) has a variety of dishes I am drooling over and can’t wait to try. This includes Salt-Roasted Clams with Garlic Butter, Whole Mackerel Roasted on Potatoes, and Grilled Sardines with Preserved Lemon Gremolata. Dr, Weston A Price was impressed with the health a seafood-centric traditional diet produced, and we know that there are a variety of nutritional benefits to eating seafood on a regular basis. Jenny’s recipes will certainly help get it on your table.

Nourished kitchen

Special Pre-Order Bonuses

I was lucky enough to get a preview copy, but you can pre-order her book right now! As a cookbook author, let me say this: It really helps authors out when you pre-order, so if you are planning on ordering it, do it now. If you do, you can also email your receipt to,  no later than April 15 at midnight pacific time, and you will get special access to the cookbook’s membership portal which includes instructional videos, menu ideas, a few sneak peek recipes from the book as well as an exclusive look at recipes that they did not include in the book due to space constraints.


Jenny’s also doing giveaways to promote her book as well, so if you want the chance to win some great things, check it out. 

Virtual Dinner Party

This recipe is part of the virtual dinner party we bloggers are doing in celebration of Jenny’s book. It’s a great opportunity to see some of the beautiful recipes in the book before you buy. Here’s the schedule:

• April 6: Chapter 1: Diana @ My Humble Kitchen
• April 7: Chapter 2: Kresha @ Nourishing Joy
• April 8: Chapter 3: Jill @ The Prairie Homestead
• April 9: Chapter 4: Kimi @ The Nourishing Gourmet (that’s me!)
• April 10: Chapter 5: DaNelle @ Weed ‘Em and Reap
• April 11: Chapter 6: Aubrey @ Home Grown and Healthy
• April 12: Chapter 7: Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship
• April 13: Chapter 8: Tamara and Kelly @ Oh Lardy

And without further ado, here’s this lovely recipe.

Pan-seared Halibut with Melted Cherry Tomatoes and Tarragon
Serves: 4

During the first few weeks of summer, tomatoes trickle slowly into the farmers market, a few baskets at a time. Such a short supply after months of cold-weather crops like roots and greens means those first few tomatoes command hefty prices and seem to disappear the instant the market opens. So I wait to purchase tomatoes until late summer, when their newness wears off and baskets at the market overflow with a seemingly continuous supply of marble-sized cherry tomatoes or even the heftier golden Amana tomatoes that can weigh 2 or 3 pounds each. The price of tomatoes falls as the supply increases, and I buy them by the case. I call on close friends and we preserve as much as we can, but I also serve them with nearly every meal—a few dropped into an omelet, roasted with fennel for soup, tossed with greens for salad, and, frequently, as a simple sauce for fish or meat. While creamy white-fleshed fish like halibut pair beautifully with mild flavors, buttery sauces, and a very light introduction of lemon or fresh herbs, they also marry well with more robust and assertive flavors like tomato. I reserve this dish for late in the summer, when bright, ripe cherry tomatoes are both inexpensive and abundant. Once they hit the hot pan, they nearly melt and their flavorful juices concentrate in the heat, becoming syrupy and thick. I like to throw in a handful of tarragon at the very end, though both basil and flat-leaf parsley also work well.
  • 4 (4- to 6-ounce) halibut fillets
  • ½ teaspoon finely ground unrefined sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon clarified butter (page 59, of book, see below)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh tarragon
  1. Sprinkle the halibut with the salt, pepper, and thyme. Set the fillets on a plate and let them rest a bit while you prepare to cook the fish.
  2. Melt the butter in a wide skillet over medium-high heat. Once the butter melts, arrange the halibut skin side down in the hot fat and sear for 4 or 5 minutes, until the skin crisps and browns. Flip the fish and continue cooking for another 2 to 3 minutes, until it flakes easily when pierced by a fork. Transfer the halibut to a serving plate and tent it with parchment paper or foil to keep it warm.
  3. To prepare the tomatoes, set the skillet you used to cook the fish over medium heat and pour in the olive oil. Toss in the shallot and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant and translucent, about 6 minutes. Toss in the tomatoes and sauté them with the shallot and garlic until they soften and release their juice, about 2 minutes. Add the tarragon and continue cooking, stirring frequently, for 1 minute.
  4. Uncover the waiting halibut. Spoon the melted cherry tomato mixture over the fish and serve immediately.
Clarified Butter

Clarifying butter deepens its flavor and color and concentrates its butterfat by removing its milk solids. The process also helps to extend its shelf life. Store clarified butter at room temperature out of direct light, just as you would store olive oil, coconut oil, or any other concentrated fat. Once you’ve removed the milk solids from the butterfat, there’s little risk of spoilage.You can apply high heat to clarified butter in ways that would cause regular butter to scorch. Makes about 12 ounces.
  • 1 pound unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
  1. Place the butter in a wide sauté pan set over low heat. Allow the butter to melt slowly. As it heats, froth and foam will gather on top of the liquid butter. Skim this off and discard it. Continue heating the butter until it becomes perfectly clear, about 10 minutes.
  2. Set a fine-mesh sieve over a bowl and line it with a double layer of cheesecloth or a single layer of butter muslin. Pour the melted butter through the cloth and into the bowl. Discard the milk solids in the cloth, then pour the clarified butter into three 4-ounce jars or one 12-ounce jar and cover tightly. Stored in a cool, dark space, the clarified butter will keep for up to 1 year.

Reprinted with permission from The Nourished Kitchen by Jennifer McGruther, (c) 2014.
Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.
Photography (c) 2014 by Jennifer McGruther
Publisher retains all copyrights and the right to require immediate removal of this excerpt for copyright or other business reasons.

Turmeric Sunburst Dip (Vegan & Paleo) – And Should We Fast From Animal Products?

Natalia Gill

Hello! My name is Natalia and I live in the “City in a Forest” (Atlanta, GA) with my husband and two children. I’ve been drawn to nutrition and natural healing since I was a young child, growing up in a Russian and Dutch home. I fondly remember my dad theatrically convincing me to love head cheese (with horseradish and lemon!) and learning to make herbal tinctures from my mom.

During my teens and early twenties, I strayed to more faddish health trends, but the color returned to my cheeks only when I came back to a time-honored way of eating. There is no greater joy than passing the gift of nourishment to my family and although we haven’t yet made full circle to the head cheese, the roots have been planted. ;) A former health columnist and project engineer, I now teach Pilates & yoga and offer practical inspiration to others as they carve a path of good health...

Turmeric Sunburst Dip

This turmeric sunflower seed sauce is bursting with flavor and nutrition. It’s perfect as a dip for wraps and raw veggies, and is a great way to get protein when not eating animal meats. Natalia is fasting from meat products as she completes a traditional fast. One thing that I appreciated about Sally Fallon’s book, Nourishing Traditions, is that although she is an advocate of the benefits of traditional foods such as grassfed beef, eggs, and saturated fats in our regular diet, she also mentioned that there could be possible health benefits to cleanse diet/ fasts, for limited time periods (another traditional practice in many cultures). Natalia is exploring that concept for herself, as she talks through that issue in this post. -Kimi 

You might guess that this dip was named for its sunflower seed base. Or for the burst of complex flavor that it brings – earthy turmeric, bright lemons and the kick of crushed red pepper. But truth be told, the inspiration for the name Turmeric Sunburst Dip is actually a little nerdy.

By now you’ve probably heard of turmeric’s unsurpassed power of reducing inflammation. Take a quick glimpse at this chart which shows the MANY causes of inflammation targeted by curcumin, turmeric’s active agent. How astounding and exciting! And it looks just like a sunburst! (Well, maybe technically a starburst. I improvised a bit.)

I’ve been dreaming up simple, healthy vegan recipes such as this one because I am currently fasting from most animal products. You might remember I was contemplating participating in the Orthodox Lenten Fast in this Buckwheat Crepes post. Well I took the plunge! Here are the guidelines.


  • The fast lasts 40 days leading up to Easter, based on this calendar.
  • No meat or animal products are allowed, with the exception of shellfish. Incidentally, shellfish happens to be an amazing source of B12 which isn’t found naturally in the vegan diet. Clams contain the most B12 of any food, surpassing even liver.
  • Olive oil and wine (alcohol) are not allowed, except for certain days – usually Saturdays and Sundays.
  • Fish is only allowed on two specified dates.
  • If someone who is fasting is invited to eat in someone’s home who is not Orthodox, it’s ok to eat whatever is served.
  • If  fasting causes undue stress (physical, mental or spiritual) it can be deviated from at any time. Some describe it with the term “Economy” or “Oikonomia” meaning to use discretionary power or to handle things to the best of one’s ability.

Fasting provides a “time outside of time” – a physical shift that leads to a perception shift. I’ve noticed that things I’ve needed to work through on a spiritual level are coming to the surface.

I’ve also been reflecting on the potential health benefits and I’d like to share my thoughts with you and raise some questions. I’d love to hear your thoughts as well.


1. Tradition

The practice of giving up meat intermittently is an ancient practice, across all cultures, religions and philosophical practices. This particular fast has been around since the 4th century. I’m most familiar with it’s place in a traditional Russian diet. Russians eat a balanced diet that includes meat, healthy animal fats and cultured dairy. But it has always been interwoven with the complete elimination of animal products.

Since we seek wisdom by looking back at “nourishing traditions” it seems that this type of fasting should be considered as part of the whole picture.

2. Detoxification

I believe grass fed beef, pastured eggs, chicken stock, etc. are healing and deeply nourishing and I include them regularly in my diet. But in the back of my mind is the nagging reality that the farther up the food chain we go, the more concentrated environmental toxins can become, some of which may unavoidable even if we source our food carefully (source).

Is there value in giving the body a rest and flushing out some of these toxins that could be accumulating in the body?

3. Variety & Rotation

It seems that our bodies were designed for a rotation diet. Eating seasonally and seeking variety are ways to rotate the foods we eat.

I’m guessing that hunter-gatherers took breaks from meat when it wasn’t available. Later, fasting became more intentional. Maybe this sort of fasting is a missing element in a “modern traditional” diet?


Without a doubt there are circumstances that would make a meatless fast challenging, stressful or even impossible. Diabetes, autoimmune disease, grain & legume intolerance to name a few.

I was concerned about doing a disservice to my digestive system as some of my healthy gut habits would be dropped. So I decided I would deviate from the fast as needed – an egg here and there, olive oil on days that it’s “not allowed”, anchovies on cheeseless pizza on a non-fish day … “oikonomia”.

And after some transition, I feel great. I sense that my digestion will be better able to receive and absorb all foods, when they are reintroduced in a couple of weeks.

So back to this delicious dip! A true representation of the joy that lies within a fast.

I love it alongside lettuce wraps filled with rice, mung beans, cilantro, jalapeno and green onions. Drizzled with a squeeze of lime, this was such a flavorful and satisfying lunch! You’ll find both recipes below.

Turmeric Sunburst Dip


What do you think? Is the traditional practice of fasting animal products an important piece of the puzzle?

Turmeric Sunburst Dip
Recipe type: Sauce, Condiment, Salad Dressing
Serves: 4

This turmeric sunflower seed sauce is bursting with flavor and nutrition. Perfect as a dip for wraps and raw veggies.
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ⅓ cup sunflower seed butter (preferably made from roasted seeds without added sweeteners)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric, freshly grated (can sub ginger)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon tamari (I use reduced sodium)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • ¼-1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  1. Blend ingredients together. Taste & add water if a thinner consistency or lighter taste is desired. Garnish with cilantro, green onion, crushed red pepper and sunflower seeds.
Try this sauce with mung bean lettuce wraps! In a Bibb lettuce leaf, wrap soaked & cooked rice and mung beans, cilantro, green onions, jalapenos and lime.



Toasted Almond Rice Pilaf

Katie Mae

Katie Stanley is a dorm “mama” to 12 amazing girls ages 8 to 18 at a home and school for the Deaf in Baja California, Mexico. She and her “hijas” can be frequently found in the kitchen, the garden or making friends with their new chickens. She loves to read, hike the hills near her home and spend time with her girls. In her spare time Katie blogs at Nourishing Simplicity about nourishing foods, herbal remedies, simple living, the deaf, raising her girls and encouraging other women in their walk with Christ.

Latest posts by Katie Mae (see all)

ToastedRicePilafIMG_7763 By Katie Mae Stanley, Contributing Writer This pilaf’s flavor comes from sautéing the onions and garlic in delicious grass fed butter and roasting the almonds and rice with the vegetables until they have a soft golden color. Roasting pulls out the flavors and ensures that the rice won’t clump together as easily because the individual grains are coated in butter. If you are worried about the use of white rice in this recipe consider reading Kimi’s article on why they eat white rice.

Simple and wholesome, rice pilaf makes a wonderful addition to almost any meal. I remember being giddy each time my mom said we could have rice pilaf for dinner. It was my favorite despite the fact that it came from a box. There is no wrong way to make pilaf. All around the world there are different variations of this simple and tasty side. The origin of our word pilaf is derived from the Modern Greek pilafi, which comes from the Turkish pilav, Persian pilāw, Hindi pulāv, Sanskrit pulāka and possibly Dravidian origin. Aren’t languages intriguing? I also love how cuisines borrow from each other and slowly form thier own unique takes on food! That’s why you will see dishes of simlar styles like my Green Pea Pulao from Malaysia or my Arabic Rice from Israel.

I make my rice in a rice cooker to save on space and time but this can easily be made on the stove. My favorite rice cooker is the Vitaclay rice/slow cooker. #affiliatelink It doubles as a rice and slow cooker. It is preprogrammed to keep your food hot for up to 12 hours! Sometimes when I know I am going to be out or busy most of the day I will put my rice in the Vitaclay and a meat in my crock pot so that I have a meal ready to go that evening! (Read Kimi’s review of it here)

Simple and Tasty Crock Pot Meals and Recipes:

Toasted Almond Rice Pilaf
Recipe type: Side
Serves: 6-8

This pilaf’s flavor comes from sautéing the onions and garlic in delicious grass fed butter and roasting the the almonds and rice with the vegetables till the have a soft golden color. Roasting pulls out the flavors and insures that the rice won’t clump together as easily because the individual grains are coated in butter.
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups white rice
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup sliced almonds
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 tsp real sea salt
  1. In a medium sized pot heat the butter over medium heat until melted. Add the onions and celery, sprinkle with salt and saute until almost translucent.
  2. Add the rice and almonds, stir until slightly browned. At this point you can transfer the rice mixture to a rice cooker or leave the rice in the pot.
  3. Stir in the broth. If you are are cooking the rice on the stove top bring the rice to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 20 minutes. If you are using a rice cooker follow the directions that came with your model. I have this rice cooker.
  4. Uncover and fluff with a fork or rice paddle before serving.