The holidays are over, and we all have eaten lots of heavy food. A deep freeze has hit my area, and I am looking for ways to remind me of summer. I love avocado and I make guacamole all year round. It is so versatile, and on cold days, it is delicious on top of your favourite chili con carne or vegetarian chili for that matter.
You can also serve it alone as a dip as you find in restaurants. Guacamole is a quick and refreshing appetizer. It is a family favourite, and my girls always fight over the last bit of guacamole in the bowl.
The hardest part of this dish is getting the avocados at just the perfect point of ripeness. One hint is to buy them fairly firm and let them ripen for a few days. Most of the time I find if they are soft at the store, they are probably over-ripe. I always buy a few extra just in case one is rotten or one is under ripe. Why Roma tomatoes (also known as plum tomatoes)? Because they are less watery and have more flesh than seeds.
Check your jalapeno peppers to see how hot they are because the heat can vary wildly from pepper to pepper. Remember you can always add more heat, but you can't take it out. Also remember to carefully clean the cilantro, as it tends to be very dirty.
I prefer guacamole without garlic but feel free to add a minced clove or two if you like it that way. As a chef I have tried all sorts of ways to keep it green, and I have found it is hit and miss. I have added a bit of water to the top and one time it worked and the next time it didn't. If you cover the top of the dip with plastic wrap, it might stay green, no promises. Guacamole is best eaten the same day.
Suggested Ways To Use Guacamole:
There are lots of ways to serve guacamole … you can basically substitute it for mayonnaise.
Guacamole is traditionally served with Mexican dishes such as fajitas, tortillas or fish tacos. Guacamole is also fantastic on burgers, hotdogs or chicken breasts. Why not try it on toast with eggs, use guacamole as a sandwich or wrap spread, in a salad dressing, with fish or fish cakes, as a dip for shrimp or as part of your deviled egg filling? Guacamole makes a great topping for baked potatoes, soup or chilli.
Chef Elizabeth's Guacamole
4 ripe Haas avocados
6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (2 to 3 limes)
1 finely chopped jalapeno pepper, taste a piece to see how hot it is
1/2 cup finely diced red onion (1 small onion)
1/2 cup washed and chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 medium Roma tomatoes diced
1. Cut the avocados in half, remove the pits, and, using a large spoon, scoop the flesh out of their shells into a large bowl.
2. Mash gently with a potato masher, whisk or a fork. Try to leave some larger pieces of avocado in the guacamole as it adds more texture.
3. Add the lime juice, jalapeno pepper, onion, cilantro, salt, and pepper and toss well. Add the tomatoes. Mix well and taste for salt, pepper or lime juice.
Serve with salsa and tortilla chips. This goes really well with a cold frosty drink such as ice cold lemonade or beer. An easy treat for Super Bowl 2015!
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