Sweet, crunchy, and boldly colored, the bell pepper is a versatile summer vegetable. With origins in Central America and South America, the Europeans were not introduced to the bell pepper until Columbus brought them back from his adventures in 1493.
With tomatoes and peppers coming into season, it’s the perfect time of year to make a fresh tomato salsa. Fresh salsa is also known as salsa fresca or pico de gallo (which translates to ‘beak of the rooster’) in Mexican cuisine. If you are new to salsa making, peruse the basic recipes listed below.
The sad, mealy, so-called tomatoes we choke down in the off-season pale in comparison to a fresh, juicy, in-season tomato. The two simply do not compare beyond a mere resemblance. Ripe tomatoes from my mother’s garden are one of my childhood pastimes and an annual marker of summer.
On summer days so hot it doesn’t cool down after sunset thanks to all the residual solar energy the earth eagerly soaked up all day long, I really don’t like to cook much. And I especially do not seek out a hot meal. In the winter, I purposely cook for the warmth from both the process of cooking and the food itself.
You might say the watermelon is refreshingly bipartisan when it comes to the politics of fruit versus vegetable. As a member of the Cucurbitaceae, or gourd family, and thus a relative of pumpkins, zucchinis, and cucumbers, it seems these green, water-filled globes are firmly rooted on the vegetable side.