Pico de Gallo
Juicy red tomatoes burst with the flavors of Mexico: punchy cilantro, crisp onions, fresh lime juice and the bite of chiles. Pico de Gallo makes almost any dish taste like a celebration.
Pico de gallo means "rooster's beak" in Spanish. As far as we can tell, no one knows why! In various parts of Mexico, it may also be called salsa cruda ("crude/raw sauce"), salsa fresca ("fresh sauce") or salsa Mexicana ("Mexican sauce").
Unlike many other salsas in Mexican cooking, Pico de Gallo is always made with raw ingredients, diced small (never pureed or blended).
There are many, many types of chiles in Mexico! In the United States, when we think of chiles, we often just think "hot." But there is a lot more than heat to chiles! Chiles add flavor to Mexican dishes as well, and each type contributes a different flavor.
Our Pico de Gallo recipe calls for jalapenos, simply because they are readily available all over the United States! Another great choice would be serranos, slightly smaller and narrower than the typical jalapeno but with roughly the same amount of heat and a similar flavor.
We'll learn more about cooking with chiles in the coming weeks.