June 23, 2011

Pico de Gallo and Guacamole

I told you I had a few things that I would throw at you before I move. Guacamole has to be one of the most frequently requested recipes that I make. I have posted a guacamole recipe or two, but I have never put this simple, fresh, limey, and I guess I could also say traditional guacamole to the page. There is a catch.....you can't make guacamole with out first making pico de gallo. Did I hear someone say "yes you can"? Well, whatever...this momma say, "you can't". Not if you want yourself some really good guacamole. And hey a little pico on the side never hurt anyone did it?

Get out your best choppin' up knife, a cutting board, and get prepared to chop.

It's best for the chip and for distribution of the flavors if you are careful to chop all your vegetables small. Not chunky. Small. Not minced. Just small...itsy bitsy.

Same for the tomatoes. First cut in half.

Then slice through again lengthwise, then slice into thin strips, all the while keeping the tomato together. This takes a sharp knife. Dull knifes are the DEVIL. Then slice the tomato through again crosswise and there you have it perfect, itsy bitsy diced tomaters!

Traditionally pico de gallo or fresh salsa is simply tomatoes, onions, jalapeno, cilantro and lime, but I have this love affair with red bell peppers that I cannot shake. I love him. Red Bell pepper come to momma....I know I'm playing with fire. Let's let this be our secret. I'm going to use just half of him this time. Slice in half, remove the white foamy membrane and seeds, cut in long thin strips and then cut again crosswise for those itsy bitsy pepper pieces.

Now for the hot one. Jalapeno. I use one whole jalapeno pepper, if you like less heat only use a half, if you like more heat then bring it on brother, use more!

Chop off the stem.

You may want to wear plastic gloves while working with jalapenos or any pepper with heat. If you choose not to wear some sort of cooking glove, then I suggested not rubbing your eyes or picking your nose at any time during or after the jalapeno chopping process. I would actually suggest that you refrain from nose picking entirely while cooking, but that's just my opinion. (I've got a funny booger recipe that I will have to share with you sometime...now is not the time, but I promise someday I will share.)

Slice in half, revealing the seeds.

Using your sharp knife, run the tip of the knife underneath the seeds. Removing them and the white membrane in one quick slice.


Now for the mincing. Slice pepper into very thin strips, then take knife and chop like a maniac. Chop, chop, chop, chop don't stop until you have very tiny micro bits of jalapeno pepper.

You will need some of this. Morton Nature's Seasoning is my favorite seasoning....I think I've said that before. I use it everyday. It's a perfect salty seasoning blend. Get yourself some.

As you chop your vegetables place them in a bowl, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the seasoning salt.

The most tedious task of this whole recipe, for me anyway, is the cleaning and de-stemming of the cilantro. Run your Cilantro through a salad spinner, getting it nice and clean. Or if you don't have one of those doo-hickeys then run cilantro under cold water and lay out on paper towels to dry. Remove leaves from stems. You will need a good handful or approximately 1/3 cup cilantro, roughly chopped.

Let it get all cozy with the other ingredients, give the cilantro a toss.

That looks fabulous, does it not??? But there is one more ingredient that is not to be forgotten.


Roll, roll, roll your lime...gently on the table...give it a squish with your palm, and cut through the.....


Ah the songs of my youth! Seriously if you roll the lime along the counter with some pressure, it will loosen the juices on the inside and make it easer to juice. If you have a juicer well then great, if not you can join me in my fork juicing method.

Fork juicing method 101: After rolling, and cutting in half, hold one half of the citrus in the palm of your less dominant hand, ram the fork into the middle of the citrus....

Squeeze hard while twisting the fork. Squeeze, twist....squeeze, twist....the juice will run flow freely from the citrus. It's marvelously simple.

Toss the chopped vegetables with the lime juice. Take tortilla chip in a pincer grip, scoop some pico on the chip, and enjoy!

Oh but wait....now you need to make Guacamole! Have you ever heard this song? It makes me giggle.

Look at that. It takes my breath away. The color. I really need to paint a room in my house this color. I'll get right on that one...NOT. I hate to paint walls. I leave that up to the professionals.

Slice avocado in half. Whack your very sharp knife into the pit, and give a tiny twist to remove.

Now cut vertically and horizontally, like so, using the tip of your knife, with out cutting through the skin.

If you are civilized you can take a spoon and gracefully scoop out the flesh of the avocado, or if you are sufficiently uncivilized like myself you can give the avocado half a squeeze and squish it's innards out into a bowl.

Repeat the roll, roll, roll of the lime. Squeeze one entire lime into the avocados. I think that more lime is better, so feel free to add another half of a lime, or more. Always taste as you go. As they say the proof is in the puddin' or in this case the quac.

Mash the lime into the avocados with the back of a fork.

Add 1 cup of the pico de gallo that you just made.

Give it a stir. There you have it heaven in a bowl.

Pico de Gallo & Guacamole

4 Roma Tomatoes, diced
1 medium sweet Onion, diced
1/2 Red Bell Pepper, diced
1 Jalapeno Pepper, minced
1 hand full fresh Cilantro leaves rough chopped, or 1/3 cup chopped
1 teaspoon Mortons Nature's Seasoning Salt
1 Lime, juiced

4 ripe Avacodos
1 Lime, juiced
1 cup Pico de Gallo

What's the saying? "It ain't over till the fat lady sings." No that's not it. "All is fair in love an war." "A monkey in silk is a monkey no less." "Great minds think alike." No that's not it either. Hmmm..."what's good for the goose is good for the gander". OO OO OO I got it....

"It's not a party with out some GuacaMoleee, bay-beh."!

Alls well that ends well,

post signature

June 20, 2011

Hello....tap tap..helloooo anyone still out there?

I am still alive. I haven't gone anywhere. In case anyone wondered.

Did anyone wonder?


HellloooOOO? tap tap tap.....anybody out there?

I've just been taking a little break. I'm still cooking, and making many lists of things I want to write about. Working out more...yes I said working out. As in excersicing....goodness I can't even spelled the dam word!

I may just come back with more than a whole new blog, maybe I'll come back a minus a donut around my middle. (I doubt it.....last night I was watchin' Toddlers and Tiara's with my arm up to my elbow in the XXL bag of M&M's my son won from his piano teacher.)

There has been alot going on in our home; in our life; in our family. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed for a little while, but I think I'm back on track.

This just may be my last Strawberry CAKE post,....but maybe not, before I make the transition to my new blog site.

I feel like I'm starting a new relationship, and I really can't or shouldn't go back to the old one. It feels kind of like when your senior year of high school is coming to a close, you need to move on, say good-bye to your first love. It's a weird. You keep coming back, but you know it needs to be over, you have to move on. He will always be a part of you but, you can never return to the way things were. Just friends....

Strawberry CAKE I love you. You will always be apart of me. Sniff...snot...snort....scuse me, a minute............

Pah-pa-pa-pa-pa-pah (that's my bottom lip quivering).

I do need to go through my queue and clean it up...there might be a few things to throw at you yet before I move on.

I thought you might like to relive my Strawberry Cake adventure with a few favorite posts, in no particular order. Chicken Caesar Wrap my daughters favorite lunch! Thursdays Ramblings on Friday came about when I decided I just needed to clear my mind, to write just to write with no real direction, you all seemed to like it. Remember these two Rascally Pilgrims they are regulars at our Thanksgiving dinner table. Then there's these scrumptious morsels Pumpkin Spice Donut Muffins! Never say Never, something I wish I'd learned earlier in life. Then there were all the PW posts, lots and lots of P-doob posts, 46 to be exact...stalker. This post received the most comments of any of my posts! Saturday Morning Tradition seemed to be a favorite also. Here are a couple of my personal favorites, Boys, Paczki! & Hairballs, and Chicken Divan. Oh and this interview was unforgettable....I know kinda random, but hey what more would you expect.

Do you have a favorite post? A favorite post that I wrote....not trying to put you on the spot or anything...just wondering.

Feedback is always good.....chirp, chirp. Flippin crickets!

Ok on that note here is some more randomness in the form of photos. Hope you enjoy!

My sweet Seestor and I at my first Cowgirl Dinner Party.

Aren't they fun?! This was on one of your road trip adventures.

Isn't he lovely...dreamy...that's my man.

Pie Crust polka dot period

I love this, my husband hates it. I see kids having fun, he sees kids not taking care of their stuff.

The beach at Lake Michigan.

My third child zipping through life. Smiling all the while.

My second child. Ever the creative one.

This is my fourth child, she's a fire cracker!!

She loves heading off early in the morning to the Farmers Market with me.

Then I found this picture of her....precious chubby cheeked brown baby.

And this picture of the day we brought her home. Look at the look on her sisters face, "Yeh well she's not all that." Priceless.

I love flowers.

My firstborn. Dare Devil. Extremely competitive, won't stop until it's perfect. I think he ended up jumping 14 skateboards this day. Wacky. I couldn't watch. I had to have another parent take this photo. Thank you Rob.

The hero hairball, donut eating numb skull of an ever lovin' canine.

Three kinds of pie, because who can eat just one kind of pie?

This is my monkey, sometimes he can be found on my back while cooking.

This is Bessy. The weird squirrel that runs around in our backyard. We think she was in a freak nut transporting accident and her tail was blown off. She is a nutty squirrel. No pun intended.

Braces, now goggles.

She runs...like the wind. I think she must have been switched at birth. Me no run. Only to the pantry.

This is what I need to do today...pick me some berries.

The Johnsons LOVE the 4th of July! It is a day for parades, basketball tournaments, eating, swimming, eating, games, fireworks, and enjoying friends. I HEART Independence Day!! Very thankful for where I live.

Red, White, and Blue ah-oo ah-oo ah-00...

One of the most relaxing weekends of my life.

The Pee-doob girls. I luv you ladies!

Thanks for stopping by. Ya'll come back now ya hear!


post signature