Who doesn’t love a crunchy, salted tortilla chip with a heaping pile of fresh Pico de Gallo on top? If you don’t, you’re crazy.
I worked as a kitchen assistant at Sur La Table for the past six months, helping out with cooking classes. While I was there, I met a dear friend who is one of the most genuine, humble and talented women I know. She’s from Peru, and she’s one of the chefs I worked with. Her name is Freyka. Freyka taught me a lot while I was working with her, and one of the most valuable lessons was how to make a delicious Pico de Gallo. She taught me a few tips and tricks that definitely take the classic pico to the next level…
Tip #1: Soak the diced onions in salt water. Soaking raw onions in salt water for at least 30 minutes will help to soften the bite and it makes them much easier to digest. No tummy troubles here!
Tip #2: Carefully remove all the seeds and “gooey” part of the tomatoes by slicing them in half and digging out the core. This will prevent the flavors in the pico from becoming diluted from all of the excess water the seeds produce.
Tip #3: Drizzle in some olive oil. This adds a nice rich flavor and some added healthy fats.
Tip #4: Use cumin! One thing you need to know about Peruvians is that they love their cumin! (A fact that Freyka reminded me several times 🙂 )
Tip #5: Let your pico rest for about 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to mix together.
We love eating our Pico de Gallo with Taquitos, pork carnitas or even just tortilla chips! You’ll notice we added avocado…the typical pico de gallo doesn’t include avocado, but come on…we all love avocado on everything and anything, so we couldn’t resist! It’s like pico de gallo had a baby with guacamole and this was the beautiful result…enjoy!
To learn more tips and tricks from Freyka, check out her Facebook page!
- 1/2 white onion
- 1 1/2 cups tomatoes, chopped
- 1 jalapeño
- 1 avocado
- Large handful cilantro
- Juice of 2 limes
- 2-3 tsp. ground cumin
- Drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil
- Salt to taste
- Tortilla chips for dipping
- Dice the onion. (*Optional=soak the onions in a bowl of water with a Tbsp. of salt for at least 30 minutes. Drain and rinse well. This takes away the bite of the raw onion and is easier on sensitive stomachs.)
- Cut open the jalapeños (wear rubber gloves or put a small ziploc bag on your hand while you cut). Dig out the seeds and dispose. Dice the jalapeño.
- Cut the avocado into small bite-sized pieces.
- In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, onion, jalapeño and avocado. Add the lime juice, cilantro, cumin, olive oil and salt to taste.
- Mix well and allow to sit for a minimum of 30 minutes before serving. (We like to make it in the morning and refrigerate all day so the flavors mix together).
- Serve with tortilla chips or over your favorite Mexican dish.