This pico de gallo takes 5 minutes to prepare and is absolutely scrumptious - perfect for serving with corn chips, vegetable sticks and drinks for a quick snack on a hot Summer’s night. Or serving as an accompaniment for any Mexican dish. Personally, I will take it any way I can get it. It is simple, fresh and delicious.
Tomatoes are plump, ripe and in season in Springfield and I am taking advantage, chopping up every variation of fresh tomato salsa I can possibly dream up. This simple pico is delicious on its own; and also serves as a tasty base to be creative. I added some chopped mango or watermelon into the mix the other night which was utterly sublime. You could use round red tomatoes, roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, or a mixture of different tomatoes for a nice variety of flavours and levels of acidity. I like my fresh tomato salsa tangy with a bit of bite. But you might want to tone it down a bit. I am also a bit more generous with the salt than I have specified. Start with a little salt and keep adding salt and lime juice until you achieve your perfect blend. You can’t go wrong.
This salsa is bursting with gorgeous flavour and vibrant colour. Best of all, it is totally low maintenance. Don’t even worry about chopping up the ingredients into uniform sizes. It is meant to be rustic. ”Pico de gallo” is Spanish for “rooster’s beak” -- probably because it looks like all of the ingredients have been broken up by a bird’s beak. You can chop most of the ingredients with a food processor by pulsing just a few times. But you will probably get a fresh tomato salsa that is more slushy and watery. I prefer to dice the tomatoes by hand (did I just say that?) after scooping out the flesh and the seeds. Do the same with the cucumber to reduce the water content. Everything else you can throw in the food processor. I allow the flavours to infuse for a few hours and then I strain the mixture and season to taste again to achieve the right balance. But you might prefer to have more liquid in there. It depends on what you are going to use the salsa for.
I know this salsa recipe is really basic and is almost banal to most Americans. But in Australia, we are shamefully starved of good Mexican food. You simply can’t find it. I suppose it is because you don’t find many Mexicans or Spaniards. Every time I set foot back on U.S soil, I shamefully drop my deprived snout in the fresh Mexican trough and barely draw breath for two days. Fresh veggie fajitas, pico de gallo and lashings of guacamole is just my idea of heaven.
Let your bird’s beak break up some fresh ingredients, season to taste and then set your snout free.