by Tammy Taylor~
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RancherMan & I love pico de gallo. That zesty mix of tomatoes, onion, garlic and jalapenos is one of our favorite ways to enjoy garden veggies. This year RancherMan even requested that I plant a pico de gallo garden to assure we can enjoy that culinary delight whenever we like. I was, of course, happy to oblige him!
I always have onions and garlic planted anyway. Of course I have tomatoes planted every year as well. And c’mon, there’s never gonna be a garden season when I don’t have copious amounts of jalapenos growing out there. So I just needed to include cilantro in my planting plan to fulfill his request. Recently we were invited to a family cookout so we told them we’d bring fresh homemade pico de gallo. You’re not gonna believe how quickly it all comes together!
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RancherMan uses 4 tomatoes, 1 small onion, 1 clove of garlic, 1/2 cup cilantro, 1/2 jalapeno & squeeze of lime juice per batch of pico de gallo. More times than not we make multiple batches at one time – why not have some in the fridge to enjoy ourselves?
But all that chopping & stirring. Ugh! Isn’t that gonna take lots of time? And more importantly, isn’t that gonna make a big, juicy mess?
Nope. Hang onto your seats, folks. RancherMan makes a batch of pico de gallo in about 3 minutes. No, really!
I bring in the ingredients that we have growing in the garden and fetch a fresh lime. Everything gets a quick wash and it’s ready & waiting for RancherMan to begin his magic. We’ve found that if you remove most of the seeds from the tomatoes that the pico de gallo is less watery. I’m not too worried about getting every last seed so this step doesn’t take long.
He quarters the tomatoes and I help him remove most of the seeds. I prefer to do this with clean hands instead of trying to use a knife to cut the seed section away. I hold the tomato & with my thumbs sweep the seed section into my compost bucket. (I’m pretty sure that’s where my compost volunteer plants come from! LOL)
Then we toss the de-seeded tomato quarters into our *pico de gallo chopper. He roughly quarters the peeled onion and tosses it into the chopper as well. He follows that with coarsely chopped fresh cilantro & a jalapeno sliced in half. We like it spicy so we don’t remove the seeds. (If you want a milder pico de gallo you can de-seed the jalapeno.) Then RancherMan tosses in a peeled clove of garlic. Finally he gives the whole thing a hefty squeeze of lime juice from a 1/2 lime.
Now comes the magic part, y’all. He snaps the lid onto our pico maker and with a couple of turns of the handle… BOOM! Everything is perfectly chopped & mixed. We just dump it into a serving bowl and we’re ready to go. Now I know I sound like an infomercial here but DANG we love this chopper! RancherMan just made fresh pico in about 3 minutes!
Let’s go back in time about 15 years ago… RancherMan & I were at the state fair watching a cooking demonstration. It was one of those, “It chops, it dices, it’s the best appliance in your kitchen” kind of demonstrations. But he made it look so easy! We like pico de gallo, maybe we should buy one of these things. But $45?? That’s a lot of money for a hand-turned chopper.
But we plunked down our money & brought it home. I felt like such a sucker spending that much money for something that might not deliver as promised.
But I was pleasantly surprised that it worked just like he said it would. We’ve spent years using this thing to make our own fresh pico de gallo! I’m happy to say it’s still one of our most valued items in our kitchen!
Thankfully the price has come down over the years. (a LOT!) But we’ve found there are also many imitations out there now. We’ve tried others when we picked ’em up at garage sales and such, but we weren’t happy with the results. Personally, I think the shape of the blade is the key. These curved blades work better in our opinion than the squared serrated blades in many of the models out there today.
So if we’re gonna eat our veggies, why not enjoy them? This pico is a healthy way of enjoying that home-grown goodness. Of course you don’t need a pico de gallo chopper to enjoy it – just get out a sharp knife and cutting board & get busy. It’s delicious and a healthy way to actually ENJOY eating your vegetables!
TMH Pico de Gallo Recipe
A quick & easy, DELICIOUS way to enjoy your veggies! Homemade pico de gallo made in just minutes using garden veggies such as tomato, onion, garlic & jalapeno. Bon Apetit!
- 4 medium tomatoes , quartered (remove most seeds)
- 1 small white onion , peeled & quartered
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/2 jalapeno (deseeded if less heat desired)
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro , coarsely chopped
- squeezed juice from 1/2 lime
Quarter fresh tomatoes and remove seed section with clean hands. Quarter onion. Peel garlic clove & de-seed jalapeno (if desired). Loosely chop cilantro.
Add all ingredients to pico chopper. Squeeze juice of 1/2 lime over ingredients & place lid on chopper. Turn handle until ingredients are thoroughly chopped & mixed. (Optional - chop all ingredients with sharp knife)
Pour ingredients into serving dish, garnish with cilantro and enjoy!
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