Guacamole primer

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This post is half recipe, half PSA. Guacamole is a simple food. Its recipe should not have a long list of ingredients or steps in the method. There are definitely tasty ways I like to “spice it up,” but the most basic, and still delicious, version of guacamole includes just 3 ingredients: avocados, lime juice and salt. And there is one thing a good guacamole will never have: sour cream! (or even a substitute like real Mexican crema, or mayo – never, or, ugh, yogurt). I can already hear some of you saying, Well who made you the guacamole policía? Well let me tell you, chica – I was born to it.

I was born to a Mexican father and Polish mother. Mexican food was always part of our food culture, and we were lucky that while it was sometimes from the taco truck at the car wash (outside of Mexico, my favorite tacos), it was often coming from our kitchen at home. When it comes to guacamole (not “guac” – I think that’s  the name of a Klingon warrior, right?), I grew up with the understanding that you keep it simple.

My favorite version of guacamole includes the basics I mentioned earlier along with some pressed garlic. Leave me alone with this guacamole and a bag of good tortilla chips and you’ll have…an empty bowl and me with chip crumbs all over my shirt, lap and the surrounding floor area.

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And it goes without saying that a good guacamole needs good avocados. It’s really disappointing when you cut open your avocado and see that you’ve got a dud. Now what is a good avocado? It’s a little soft, soft enough that you can press your thumb into and make a gentle indentation without having to try too hard. Don’t force it! You’ll only end up disappointed. When you cut it open, it’s a beautiful light green with darker green around the edges. It is not stringy. In my book, stringy avocados are unsalvageable.

I guess that’s it. This isn’t rocket science or even long division. It’s really, really easy. The recipe below is just to get you started. You can make more and add ingredients to taste. For the cost of a small tub of guacamole from your local market, you can make at least twice as much in your own kitchen! So gather your avocados, get a small bowl and a fork, and let’s get started. ¡Ándale pues!

Guacamole
As a snack or appetizer for 2 or 3 (or in some cases, for 1)

Ingredients
2 ripe avocados
lime juice from 1/4 of a lime (add more or less to taste)
2 small garlic cloves, pressed
salt to taste

Optional ingredients
tomato, de-seeded (i.e. squeeze the seeds out), diced
cilantro, chopped, to taste
black pepper

How to
Scoop out all of your avocado into a medium sized bowl. Mash it a few times with a fork.

Add the rest of the ingredients. Mash to the consistency you like. I like mine a little chunky.  If you plan to use tomato, add it after the guacamole is already mashed and simply mix it in.

Now scoop it up with chips, add it to your veggie or meat burgers, spread it on some toast, add it to a taco, name it, share it, don’t share it…so many possibilities!

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