Fresh Salsa with Avocado

Preparation info

  • Makes

    4 Cups

    • Difficulty


Appears in

Get in There and Cook: A Master Class for the Starter Chef

Get in There and Cook

By Richard Sax

Published 1997

  • About

This fresh, chunky mixture beats the jarred versions hands down. The avocado is a special rich touch, although if you prefer, it can be omitted—the salsa is still delicious.


  • 6 to 8 ripe plum tomatoes, cored, seeded, and cut into ½-inch chunks (Tomato Basics)
  • Coarse kosher salt or sea salt
  • ½ red or yellow bell pepper (or better, some of each), trimmed and diced
  • 2 or 3 jalapeño peppers (fresh or pickled), trimmed, seeded, and minced (Hot Chili Pepper Basics), or use 2 to 3 tablespoons drained canned chopped jalapeños
  • ½ red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 scallions (white and green portions), trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves, or 1 tablespoon each chopped fresh parsley and fresh cilantro
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Juice of 2 small limes
  • 1 ripe avocado


    1. Place the diced tomatoes in a nonreactive colander in the sink or over a large plate with a rim. Sprinkle the tomatoes with a light coating of salt (usually about 1½ teaspoons); toss to combine. Let the tomatoes stand for 45 to 60 minutes to allow the excess juices to drain, tossing once or twice. Discard the juices.
    2. Meanwhile, combine the bell pepper, jalapeños, onion, scallions, garlic, parsley, black pepper, and half of the lime juice in a medium bowl; toss gently with a wooden spoon. Stir the drained tomatoes into the salsa and let stand at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. If you want, pour off some of the excess liquid, but leave the salsa quite moist.
    3. Cut the avocado lengthwise in half; remove the pit. Halve the halves lengthwise and remove the skin, keeping the flesh whole. Cut the flesh into ½-inch chunks and place in a small bowl. Add the remaining lime juice; toss avocado very gently with a rubber spatula to avoid mashing it. Add the avocado and lime juice to the salsa, again tossing very gently. Taste, and correct the seasonings if needed, adding more salt, pepper, or lime juice to balance the flavors. Serve at cool room temperature.