Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Perfect Party Pico - Swearsies!

We have gotten lots of questions on where to get the best pico.  We often buy our pico from the store (no particular brand stands out above another).  But truth-be-told, the BEST pico is the stuff you make at home...and it's easy peasy lemon squeezy (or in this case, lime)!

Seriously, TRY THIS - you can customize it to your preferences, but this is a great base recipe!
I love the beautiful array of fresh and colorful veggies!

A good dicing knife is super-handy too!  We love our Miracle Blades (you can get them at Fred Meyer or Bed, Bath & Beyond)!

Dice your tomatoes - we like ours nice and small.

You would usually use Roma Tomatoes, but we couldn't find any nice ones (I seriously would not eat the ones that we saw), so we used good old vine ripened tomatoes.

Because we used regular tomatoes, we drained them in a strainer first.

And then threw them into our mixing bowl.

Then we diced up our onions - white AND red...it's important!

And mixed them all together.

Crush your garlic - you can do it right into your bowl...you probably don't take pictures of your food anyway!

Lovely garlic with it's cohorts...plotting to tantalize your tongue!

Jalapenos - so, so good and so, SO important!  See helpful hint below...

Aw, cute...a baby bell inside the mama bell!

Dice your bell peppers up...we always use a green as a base, then a colored bell (red, yellow, orange) for some added sweetness.


Throw them into your bowl

Lovely, aromatic cilantro...how I love thee.

Put your cilantro into your bowl...and admire the gorgeous colors!  Real food has color AND flavor!

Generously salt and pepper your dish.

We scooped half of it into some containers to store in the fridge.  What did we do with the other half, you ask?

Squeezed some lime

And lime zest into it OF COURSE!  For an easy tip on zesting, see below...

Perfectly mixed with the lime and zest...oh. my. YUM!

Then scooped some into our kids' favorite chips!  

They LOVED it!  My kids are the coolest!  They love their pico!

PS - See my brownish bananas?  We'll be making these tomorrow!

Perfect Party Pico (this makes A LOT, so feel free to scale it back!)

5 large Tomatoes, chopped
3/4 medium White Onion
1/2 medium Red Onion
3 large Garlic Cloves, pressed
3 large Jalapenos, diced
1/2 large Green Bell Pepper
1/2 large Yellow Bell Pepper (or any other colored pepper)
1/2 cup Cilantro, chopped (or to taste...we like a lot!)
Cracked Pepper to taste (A LOT)
Salt to taste (really just to taste)

Chop, dice, press, etc. all ingredients in mix well in a large bowl.

If you're Mr. Charming, that is your perfect pico, but if you're like me....

Add:
1 whole Lime, juiced AND zested

*HINTS: 
To seed and devein your jalapenos (or bell peppers), cut them open (length-wise in half) and use a spoon to pull the seeds/veins down and out.  It works like a charm and cuts down on how long you handle the jalapeno.  Be sure to use gloves if you haven't handled them before.  I think some people are move sensitive than others!

If you forget to zest your lime before you cut it; go ahead and juice it first, then turn your segments over (pulp side down) and drag your zester from top to bottom for a quick, easy zesting method (see pic above)!

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