Saturday, April 28, 2012

Pico de Gallo from Linda Rodriguez

LUCY BURDETTE: We are all so excited about Linda Rodriguez's debut novel, but I was doubly delighted to find out on Monday that she's also the author of a Mexican cookbook. So I begged her to share a recipe...and ps, the photo is not of Linda's pico de gallo, so don't be surprised if your dish looks nothing like this:).

LINDA RODRIGUEZ: The “I Don’t Know How To Cook” Book: Mexican was designed as part of a series to make cooking easy, even for people who don’t know how to cook or have never tried to cook. If fast food tacos and burritos are your idea of Mexican food, you’re in for a surprise. No one eating what passes for commercial Mexican food in America would have any idea of the variety of tastes and textures good Mexican food provides—or the variety of fruits and vegetables (almost always missing on that restaurant plate) found in good Mexican cooking.

Rooster’s Bill (Pico de Gallo)

You will find this different from the pico de gallo that your favorite Mexican restaurant serves, which is made from diced tomatoes, onions, and peppers. Use this as a sauce for tacos or as a side dish for a meal.
Serves 4

What You Need:
1 medium jicama
1 small yellow onion
1 large orange
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground oregano

What You Do:
1. Wash, pare, and chop jicama into 1/2" chunks. Remove skin from onion and cut into 1/4" pieces.
2. Pare and section orange, reserving juice, and add to jicama. Pour orange juice over mixture. Add onion, lemon juice, and salt. Stir until evenly mixed.
3. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.
4. Sprinkle with chili powder and oregano before serving.

This recipe got its name because it is frequently served by street vendors in Mexico City as finger food for their stand-up diners. The action of eating with the fingers is compared to the rooster pecking at corn in the farmyard.

Published in The “I Don’t Know How To Cook” Book: Mexican (Adams Media, 2008)

Thanks Linda! And good luck with the launch of EVERY LAST SECRET!


  1. Three quarters through your book, Linda. It's been an exciting read, and I'm wondering how it will end. Good to meet you at Malice and thanks for the recipe!

  2. Thanks to Linda for providing this recipe on the way out the door to Malice! (She looks like she's floating through the conference!)

  3. Thanks, Lucy! And Linda, I love this! I spent a lot of time growing up in Mexico, and especially in Mexico City and Guadalajara. Of course, living in Texas, everyone loves Tex-Mex, but it's nothing like real Mexican food.

    My favorite Mexican street food was cucumbers with lime juice and chili powder!

    ps I want your cookbook!

  4. Linda, this sound wonderful. I'm going to get the Munchkin and her friends to make it tomorrow.

  5. Linda! This pico de gallo sounds fantastic! I love jicama! But I am totally in love with your new book-- arrived very late yesterday! Did I need Skeet Bannion! Well don't we all? Have a great time at Malice!

  6. ... am I too excited ... not possible.I am so thrilled for you, Linda. xoxoxxx

  7. Lucy I am so glad you posted this today. It has made my weekend. I just saw a recipe Linda has in her cookbook that I absolutely must make - Brie and Mango Quesadillas!

    Now if I could just get that husk off the jicama... .

  8. Hi Linda,
    Copying this recipe and printing it out. Sounds awesome.


  9. E.B., so glad you are liking the book. And lovely meeting you at Malice also.

    I'm sorry to be so late responding to these comments, but encountered technical difficulties on the road. I'm going to have to get an iPhone, I suppose.

  10. Lucy/Roberta, it was so great to meet you at Malice, as well as the wonderful Hank and the gorgeous Hallie.

    I must say, all the Jungle Reds are even more beautiful than their photos. Doesn't seem quite fair, does it?

  11. Debs, we will have to get together some time and have a fiesta. Oh, yes, the cucumbers! And ensalada de nopales. With queso fresco.

  12. Darlene, I hope you and the Muchkin and friends liked it.

  13. Reine, I'm so glad you like Skeet. I'm pretty fond of her myself. I love your new photo. Wow! Are you looking good!

    And yes, the Brie and Mango Quesadillas are yummy. For the book, they had me use American cheeses instead of Mexican, though I give a listing of the original Mexican cheeses in the book. Many U.S. towns today have good Mexican markets or their regular supermarkets have Mexican sections with real Mexican cheeses. Some of the best-tasting cheeses in the world are made in Mexico and they have a huge variety of them.

  14. Linda, thanks for the tip. I love Mexican cheese. No trouble to find in Tucson. Even chain markets here sell fresh tortillas. Hope you had a good time at Malice. xxx

  15. Reine, yes, I figured Tucson would have all of the good Mexican produce.

    Malice was great! Wish you could have been there. You would have loved it. We'll have to find a way to make that happen.

  16. Linda, you are so dear... it will happen.