Pico De Gallo, my favorite way to celebrate the flavors of Spring

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I was staring at my kitchen bowl of fresh vegetables on Saturday and knew that I needed to use what I had left over from the week, or I’d get busy with stuff and then it would be ready for the compost bin.

But alas, what did I see, a few tomatoes, an onion, a lime and lemon. It’s Spring, why not make some Pico de Gallo for a fresh appetizer…so much better than that stuff they sell in any jar.

We’ve tried dozen’s of jarred salsa’s from the most expensive to the moderate, and they are all “meh.”

So here goes my homemade version.

Ingredients:

6 long green chiles

2 large ripe tomatoes (cored, seeded and tiny diced by hand, you can chop coarsely, I prefer smaller)

1 cup tiny diced white onion 

1/3 cup minced cilantro

2 to 3 fresh yellow chiles of large jalapeno chiles, stemmed and tiny chopped

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice ( the juice of 2 limes)

dash of salt

dash of granulated sugar

Equipment: 

large bowl

citrus juicer (remember, lemons and limes yield more juice when at room temperature)

large sharp kitchen knife       ( It’s time to sharpen your knife) 

large spoon

brown paper bag

In the open flame of your gas burner OR under a heated broiler, roast the long green chiles, turning them, until they are evenly charred. Place in the brown paper bag to “steam.”

Allow to cool, they will be extremely hot so use caution!

Rub away the burned peel, stem and seed the chiles and coarsley chop them.

In your large bowl mix: tomatoes, onions, chopped green chiles, jalepeno/yellow chiles, cilantro, lime juice and salt.

Taste, THEN add the sugar a little at a time. Taste again…..The sugar just takes some of the strong bite out and melds the flavors together.

*Cover & Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour prior to serving

Though the salsa will lose some of its texture, the flavor will remain good for up to two days.

Note: For those that don’t tolerate onions well, once chopped, soak them in super cold water while chopping other ingredients, this will take out the acid like pungent taste.

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