A Taste of Summer in Winter: Pico de Gallo

I needed a pick-me-up the other night to snap me out of this cold spell we have been experiencing in the northeastern United States. New York saw almost two straight weeks of below-freezing temperatures. It's the kind of weather that calls for stew, braised meats, roasted root vegetables, and grainy breads... unless the radiator in your apartment chugs and bangs and hisses so much that the temperature inside your apartment routinely hits 79 degrees F, which mine does. Someone crack a window!

Memories of beaches and sand shifting beneath my feet at each step make me crave fish tacos and pico de gallo.

Pico de Gallo

diced tomatoes, firm ones are okay
diced red onion, about the same quantity as the tomatoes, or less if you prefer
lime zest from 1 lime
lime juice from 1 to 2 limes
red wine vinegar, just a splash
1/2 cup or more cilantro (also known as fresh coriander), chopped
salt to taste
1 jalapeno, finely diced (optional)
ground cayenne pepper (optional)

Gently toss all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour or overnight. Let stand at room temperature at least 30 minutes before eating. Serve with fish tacos, broiled or grilled fish, tortilla chips, or over a light salad.