Mango Habanaero Marinade

When Nate and I got our first grill, we couldn't wait use in on hot summer days.  This marinade has been around for quite a few years, and kind of feel off our radar when the littles came around and we didn't exactly have all day to marinate something and spend time grilling for hours.

I had forgotten how great this marinade freezes and really how quickly it can be used on shrimp, pork and chicken.  It makes a bunch (three cups!), easily enough for two rounds of food, if not three depending on how thick your chicken or pork might be.

And don't be scared with the word:  habanero.  It adds heat, but with added sweetness from coconut and mango, not to mention you cook it down a bit, you're not exactly eating raw peppers.  I recently fed it to adults and kiddos alike, and the kiddos wanted more - the adults MAY have been extra hungry and greedy.  Next time I'll make more!

I failed to photograph any of the marinade in the making mostly because it's a pile of orange goo with pieces of shaved coconut.  Not exactly the stuff food blogger dream about photographing!

But I did snap my gorgeous shrimp on the grill.

I took a pound of uncooked, deveined shrimp, and peeled the shells and tails off.  I split my marinade in half and froze the rest (about 1.5 cups)  If you are a fan of peel and eat shrimp, this step is optional.  The marinade would get trapped in the shell on the shrimp and be delicious too, but an extra step in eating that I wanted to avoid with the kiddos.

Grill the shrimps on a foil-lined grill (easier clean-up) for only a few minutes on each side.  The marinade is yummy, but even on rubber, it's not that great.

Gobble as quickly as you can.

Want to know how you make this at home??  I thought you'd never ask!

Gather up:

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped mango (1 small bag of frozen mango, or 2 fresh)
  • 1 habanero pepper (remove seeds and fibers to lessen the spice)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp rum (dark, spiced, whatever you've got)
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (I used red Tabasco)
  • 1 Tbsp fresh-grated ginger root (you can use ground, but the fresh stuff is just too yummy to pass up!)
  • 1/4 c flaked coconut
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 c coconut milk (canned, use the juice, not the white creamy part on top)
  • 1-2 lime, zested and juiced (depending on how juicy they are)
  • large chunk cilantro chopped
  1. Puree mango, habanero, garlic, rum and hot sauce until smooth
  2. Add puree to small sauce pot and add in ginger, coconut, coriander, cumin and bring to a boil.
  3. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes.  Keep an eye that it doesn't burn - you've got a lot of sugar in that pot!
  4. Remove puree from heat and let cool.
  5. Once cooled, stir in coconut milk, lime zest and juice and cilantro.
Now you have your marinade!
We have also used this sauce as a shrimp dipping sauce!  So good!

Marinade times:
Shrimp:  2-4 hours
Chicken or pork:  4-6 hours, or overnight

Freeze any leftovers in an air-tight container for up to 3 months.



The impending end of the school-year and another page in the calendar turning over causes a little mommy-sentimental moment to bubble to the surface.

When my girls were infants, I wished they would just sleep through the night in their own crib, and not need to be rocked.  And rocked.  And rocked.  Now my cold, empty arms just miss that tiny, sweet weight in them (yet my slept-through-the-night self rejoices!)  This has also turned me into an unapologetic baby hog, snuggling any baby who's mother will allow it.

During that first year, we loved the new words that kept coming and coming, and now we have those days where it's like "Can you just be quiet already!?"  All too soon, I'll have daughters who gab only to friends behind closed doors, and I'll miss those heavily-detailed recounts of every moment of recess.

Even the naps.  This has always been a double-edged sword in our home.  They need to sleep.  I got to nap too.  It was the best part of my day where we got to be home and quiet and I couldn't run the vacuum for fear of waking them.  Truth time:  that was all a lie.  My girls have always slept like the dead if they were tired enough.  I could vacuum their pillows during nap time and I doubt they'd notice.

I painfully, and regretfully, admit that I have wished these little moments away.

Avery had a spell recently when she'd only nap with me.  If you follow me on Instagram (and you should!) you'd see a string of fly-catcher snaps with green paci dangling from her lips.  I'm sure she'll love those later.  Anyway...  She would stall and make noise for 30, 40, 90 minutes.  Picking my battles, I would let her cuddle on my chest and within mere minutes, she'd be snoozing away.   We could lay like that for hours - housework be damned.  And, because noise was not an issue, I still got to watch Bravo and The Food Network!

That time together was amazing.  I'd kiss her little head.  Take in deep breaths of her hair, smelling of a mix of fruit snacks, dirt and play dough.  Using my fingers to trace of ears and cheeks, willing myself to remember each little line - storing those gems for later moments to find peace when I wanted to throw myself from the roof.

Then, she stopped.  It came without warning, and I didn't even realize it happened until it was too late to go back.  No more kissed head.  No more hair sniffing.  No more face-drawing memory exercises while she dreamed and drooled.  I blinked and it was gone.

the last time
But rather than wallow in my loss, I will find some joy.  Thank goodness I am addicted to social media and have this blog.  I have a place to capture tiny memories that might not ever make the "A" roll in her wedding slide show, but they will always make me smile.

Especially on those "jump off the roof" days, am I right?!

I will make an effort to celebrate the little memories and not worry so much about the bigs.


Summer Activity Printables

The school year is winding down which means that I will have my children in my home constantly.

It's something I am both excited for and dreading.

Sunny days are easy.  We can play outside, or go to the pool.  Simple.
Not so sunny days, or nights, that's where we need ideas.

I took some inspiration from Pinterest and created some super simple printable worksheets to fill out with my girls.

Olivia is old enough that she can print her own, and I'll help Avery with some of her own 4-year-old ideas.  I see some fun markers in our future to jazz these lists up!

Click to print blank lists for:

outdoor activities
quiet time activities
acts of kindness
bucket list

Happy Summer everyone!

For personal use only please.

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