Gluten Free/ Mexican and Latin Recipes/ Sauces/Condiments/ Uncategorized/ Vegetables

“Winter” Pico de Gallo

While certain parts of the country are starting to enjoy fresh produce, here in Northern Utah, we are still dealing with freezing nights.  Recently I inquired if it was time to plant our garden and was told no, unless I wanted everything to freeze.

As part of my dinner tonight I wanted to add pico de gallo to the dish.  However, we have no fresh tomatoes.  I do not care for grocery store tomatoes, even the organic or hot house kinds.  I will only eat raw tomatoes fresh from the garden.  Even the packaged “fresh pico de gallo” you can pick up in the deli section is unpalatable to me.  I decided I would try making pico with canned tomatoes and see how it went…

Turns out, pretty tasty. Fresh is best, but to get through the long, long winter months here, it was a fantastic substitute.  The canned tomatoes had a richer flavor than those fresh tomatoes I can buy at the store.  I made a very basic recipe and went with mild.  My daughter can handle some heat, but my grandmother isn’t a fan of spicy.  Add a seeded and deveined jalapeño to give this salsa some kick.

1 can petite diced tomatoes; drained

2 tbsp cilantro; finely chopped

¼ cup white onions; finely chopped

Juice from ½ of fresh lime

Salt/Pepper to taste

Open the tomatoes, drain them well.  Chop the onion and the cilantro and add them to a bowl.  Add the tomatoes, lime juice, salt, and pepper.  Serve with chips or in any dish.

Thank you for sharing!

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  • Reply
    Paula Ball
    June 14, 2014 at 10:15 am

    My grandmother was Mexican & I grew up on flour tortillas & beans. There was always salsa or pico for the beans, but never have I seen it made with canned tomatoes. You’re right about store bought tho, some of them are tasteless. I’m gonna have to give this a try.

    • Reply
      June 14, 2014 at 11:30 am

      Paula, Home grown tomatoes are the best way to go! Nothing will ever substitute those in salsa, but I was really surprised at how well the canned worked. This one won’t taste like your grandmother’s did, but it will get you by when there are no fresh tomatoes around worth eating.

  • Reply
    September 16, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    Hi there, i was wondering if you have ever made pico de gallo with tomatoes that you have froze from your garden. Where i live the temperature went below zero before a lot of my tomatoes turned green. I have brought them inside and have them “harvesting” in paper bags and as they turn red i freeze them so the others can catch up. Think these would still be okay for Pico?

    • Reply
      September 18, 2014 at 10:30 am

      Hi Stephanie. Thank you for stopping by. I have never frozen my fresh tomatoes. I took your question to several of my fellow bloggers and friends who grow their own gardens and freeze their toms. They all agreed that the frozen, then thawed tomato would not hold up well for pico de gallo. The freezing changes the consistency of the tomato, making it rather mushy. Tomatoes that have been frozen are best as a component in a dish, not the start (except for sauces). There was a consensus that if you wanted to use the frozen tomatoes in a pureed salsa, with onions, peppers, cilantro, etc, that might work. No one has tried it though. If you’re up for an experiment, I would give that a try.

  • Reply
    bubba mustafa
    February 25, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    Gotta try this. Always have canned dice tomatoes about. The store bought pico is really pricey, and at times I don’t wanna venture out for fresh tasteless tomatoes.

    • Reply
      Michelle De La Cerda
      February 26, 2016 at 9:17 pm

      I can’t stand fresh store bought tomatoes. They ruined me for years and years from every even trying a fresh from the garden tomato. I love the flavor of pico, so this was an experiment that work. Sure, it’s not garden fresh, but it does the job.

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