If you ask any Mexican what Pico de Gallo is, the answer is quick: Pico de Gallo is a sauce.
However, some websites and books refer to Pico de Gallo as a salad. This would baffle any Mexican, but we can see their point: salsas are liquid, while Pico de Gallo is a combination of chopped ingredients.
But first things first: What is Pico de Gallo? Pico de Gallo is a sauce (or salad) made mixing chopped chili peppers, onions, and tomato and adding spices and lime juice. The result is refreshing and slightly acid, the perfect foil for the spiciness of Mexican food.
Pico de Gallo means literally “Rooster Beak.” The origin of the name is unclear. Some claim that the reason is that the chopped ingredients look like they were pecked by a rooster. Others believe that the “Beak” refers to the motion you make with your thumb and index finger to grab the small pieces of produce that this sauce (or salad!) is made of.
There are many reasons to love this staple of Mexican cuisine: First if you love chicken like us, you gotta love the name. Then, the basic ingredients (chili peppers, onions, and tomato) bear the colors of the Mexican flag. And last, but not least, Pico de Gallo is extremely versatile and you can serve it with almost any Mexican dish, from tacos to grilled chicken.
Pico de Gallo, a Versatile Sauce/Salad
Is precisely in this versatility where lies the answer to our original question. Is this a sauce or a salad? The answer is that it can be both, depending on how you eat it.
And while most Mexicans would scratch their heads at the notion of Pico de Gallo as a salad, renowned Mexican chefs with in-depth knowledge of Mexican cuisine, like Ricardo Muñoz Zurita, classify it as both a sauce and a salad, even going as far as explaining that you can make sweet Picos de Gallo using fruit instead of onions, chili peppers, and tomato.
More Interesting Facts About Mexican Food
As you can see, every Mexican dish tells a small bit of Mexico’s history. These are some previous posts you can read to learn more about this fascinating topic:
- Huevos Rancheros: everything you need to know
- Mexican Carne Asada is a way of life
- The amazing stories behind the names of Mexican food
- 3 delicious facts about tacos
- Mesquite, a symbol of Mexican culture
- Why Are chili peppers so important in Mexican cuisine
Enjoy Authentic Mexican Food at El Pollo Norteño
If what you want is Authentic Mexican food in California, El Pollo Norteño is your best option.
Visit today any of our four locations (Anaheim, Santa Ana and Garden Grove), order online, get in touch through Facebook, or call 866-MI-POLLO to enjoy our authentic Mexican dishes: amazing chicken grilled to perfection over real Mesquite charcoal, tacos, burritos, tortas, birria, and more!