Recipe of the Week : Get out of the Kitchen! Two Quick and Easy Salads

I've been thinking about the amount of time I spend in the kitchen. During the winter I'm there all the time making soups and stews and things that fill the house with the wonderful aromas of cooking. This time of the year I'd rather be outside so I make things with the least amount of preparation and cooking time that I can manage. To that end I'm going to give you two Thai inspired recipes that take about five to ten minutes each to make. Make them in the morning and let them cool in the refrigerator if you like. As a tip of the hat to Houston who commented on last week's recipe I have included a cucumber salad and the second is for mango. You can serve these as part of a summer buffet or try adding the Thai Lemongrass Rice Salad from the TreeHugger archives and you've got an easy, satisfying meal. I have made both of these salads many times and they are always a hit.Mango Salad

2 ripe mangoes, cut into small cubes
3 tbsp red onion, chopped
2 tbsp Italian parsley, roughly chopped
1 tbsp cilantro leaves
3tbsp rice wine vinegar
pinch of sugar
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Toss all ingredients together in a small bowl and stir.

Serves 4

Cucumber Salad

2 medium sized cucumbers
4 tbsp shallots, sliced
2 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
4 tbsp fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped
2 tbsp fish sauce
4 tbsp rice vinegar
1tsp sugar
6 large lettuce leaves

1. Slice cucumbers thinly on a mandolin or with a knife. Place in a medium bowl.
2. Add all of ingredients except lettuce and stir.
3. Line salad bowl with lettuce and pour cucumber mixture over top - or if you'd rather be less formal, just roughly chop the lettuce and toss the whole thing together.

Serves 6

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