Fresh Salsa-Pico de Gallo
What is one sign of a good taqueria? The salsa, of course!
Or I should use the plural and say "salsas?" Who doesn’t love having a variety of salsas to choose from, whether dining at a taco truck or full-on restaurant? Often there’s tomatillo salsa verde, red chili salsa, and fresh tomato salsa otherwise known as pico de gallo or salsa fresca. Actually, we all can make homemade salsa by ourselves! Homemade pico de gallo is the best and it’s so easy to make. This simple salsa recipe is made with chopped fresh tomatoes, chili peppers, red onion, cilantro, and lime. Eat it fresh with tortilla chips!
Pico de Gallo (Fresh Salsa)
12 to 16 servings
3 to 4 cups
- 2 to 3 medium fresh tomatoes (1 to 1 1/2 pounds), stems removed
- 1/2 medium red onion
- 2 serrano or 1 jalapeño pepper, stems, ribs, and seeds removed (less or more to taste)
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pinch dried oregano (crumble in your fingers before adding), or more to taste
- 1 pinch ground cumin, or more to taste
- Prep the ingredients:
Roughly chop the tomatoes, chili peppers, and onions. Be careful while handling the chili peppers. Use a plastic baggie or disposable gloves to handle them, or wash your hands thoroughly with soap and hot water after handling and avoid touching your eyes for several hours.
- Make the salsa:
Place all of the ingredients in the bowl of a food chopper fitted with the blade. Pulse only a few times, just enough to finely dice the ingredients and not enough to puree.
- Adjust seasonings:
Place in a serving bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. If the chilis make the salsa too hot, add some more chopped tomato. If it's not hot enough, carefully add a few of the seeds from the chilis, or add a little more ground cumin.
If you like, let the salsa sit for an hour (room temperature or chilled) for the flavors to combine.
Because this particular salsa recipe is made with fresh ingredients, it will last as long as you would expect cut fresh tomatoes to last. It's best eaten right after you make it. Chilled, the salsa should last about 5 days or so.
About this recipe, fresh tomato salsa is ideally made with firm, fleshy tomatoes. You can of course make the salsa with any kind of tomato, but the firm ones like Romas or hothouse tomatoes will hold up the best.
Except the tomatoes, we also should pick and handle hot peppers. But how can we choose?
When using fresh chili peppers always taste first before adding! Some peppers are hotter than others and you really can't tell unless you taste them. Just take a very small taste. You'll be able to gauge the heat of the pepper and will be better able to judge how much you need.
Be very careful while handling the chili peppers. If you can, avoid touching the cut peppers with your hands. We can use disposable gloves or hold the peppers with a plastic sandwich bag. Rub your hands with a little olive oil before handling (to protect our skin), and wash our hands thoroughly with soap and hot water after handling and avoid touching your eyes for several hours. Of course, if we have a food chopper which can help us cut the hot peppers without touching, we surely don’t need to worry about the above problems.