Xoconostle Pico de Gallo

pico de gallo xoconostle

In my part of Mexico, where cacti grow abundantly, we eat so much of what a cactus has to offer.  Not only do we eat the cactus pod, the sweet fruits like tunas and pitayas, but also the sour fruit called xoconostles.  Pronounced hoko-nose-leh.

Xoconostles have been used for thousands of years and they are finally making their way into Mexican markets all overUnited States. They look something like this:


During my dad’s recent visit to Mexico, he brought me back some extremely fresh xoconostles.  I am trying to be gentle with them and make them last because there is nothing like wild xoconostles from my village.

The recipe I show you today is one of the most simple ways to introduce anyone to this sour fruit: Pico de Gallo.  A dimension of sourness that’s unlike any other, will be added to this pico by the xoconostle. Be prepared, you’re going to love it!

Yields approximately 2 cups

6 xoconostles
1/3 cup chopped white onion
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup cilantro
6 dried chiles de arbol
1 lime
Salt to taste

- Cut the ends of the xoconostles and peel completely.
- Now you have to remove the seeds. Cut xoconostles in half. Using a small spoon remove the seeds.

xoconostles adriana guillen

- Chop the xoconostles and mix with the other chopped items in a bowl.
- Using a molcajete, mortal and pestle, or spice grinder grind the chiles de arbol into flakes. Add the flakes to the other items.
- Lastly, add the juice of the lime and salt to taste (approximately 1/2 teaspoon).

Now you can eat this pico de gallo as you would any other pico. Add it as a topping for tacos, salads, burritos, etc. My favorite way to eat it is on top of a nice bowl of frijoles de la olla with some small pieces of corn tortilla mixed in there. You can find my recipe for these Mayocoba beans here.




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