Gather the ingredients.
Mix together all the salad dressing ingredients in a bowl or cup. The dressing should be a mingling of sweet, sour, spicy and salty, but more sweet than sour. Set aside.
Place coconut in a dry frying pan or wok. "Dry-fry" the coconut, as if you were stir-frying it, 2 to 3 minutes over medium heat, or until it turns a light golden-brown and is fragrant. Transfer to a bowl to cool.
Using a sharp paring knife, peel the skin from mangoes. The flesh of the mango should be firm and light yellow-orange.
Using a medium to large-size grater (the kind you would use for cabbage salad), grate the flesh of the mangoes into a mixing bowl. Keep in mind there is a large flat stone at the mango's center.
Add the bean sprouts, coriander, spring onions, cooked chicken, shrimp or tofu (if using), the fresh-cut chili (if using), plus half the toasted coconut. Toss well to combine.
Add the dressing and toss again. Do a taste-test—add more fish sauce or soy sauce instead of salt if needed. If you prefer it sweeter, add a little more sugar (honey works too). If you prefer more spice, add more chili sauce. If too salty or sweet, add more lime juice.
Place on a serving platter. Sprinkle the nuts, basil and remaining toasted coconut over the top.