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Fresh Tomato and Chile Salsa (Salsa Mexicana)

Salsa mexicana, also known as salsa fresca, is the reigning condiment of Mexico. It is found on the tables of both fancy restaurants and neighborhood taquerias. For some reason, in many parts of the country, it is also known as pico de gallo, or "roosters beak," a designation also given to a regional specialty of Jalisco composed of pieces of jicama, with cucumber, melon, or pineapple, all sprinkled with ground dried chiles. The commonality seems to be either the sharply cut pieces of ingredients or the sharp tastes. The clean flavor and texture of freshly prepared vegetables are essential to this relishlike salsa of hand-chopped tomatoes, crisp white onions, and fiery green chiles, all mixed together with pungent cilantro. Salt is a magnet for flavors, so be generous with its use here.
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