Since yesterday was Cinco de Mayo, I figured I’d post a favorite Mexican dish of mine: guacamole.
I actually remember the first time I had guacamole. I think I was about 14 years old. My mom made it for taco night one Saturday night in the summer. It was the first time I’d ever laid eyes on an avocado. I thought it was so strange, and couldn’t really believe I was going to try eating it. She mashed it up with a packet of “guacamole mix” and I think I ate almost all of it with some tortilla chips, all by myself. Adding avocados to our taco night was a HUGE deal. It was just so different than anything else we had at the time. Little did I know that avocados would eventually become one of my most favorite ingredients ever.
At Auburn, I started to cook for myself and was fortunate enough to be surrounded by people who were all excellent cooks and who were from all over the south. To this day, my Auburn girls are still my favorite group of recipe-exchangers. One of the classics I picked up from them was Anne’s homemade guacamole. She made it for a party (one of the many) at Lex & Lindsey’s Lakeview “villa.” I remember having to exercise restraint not to take it away and eat it all by myself that night. It turns out that homemade guacamole, sans-packet-mix, is pretty dadgum tasty.
My version isn’t quite the same as Anne’s, and it changes depending on what kind of ingredients I have on hand. But yesterday, I made up what I consider an “ideal” batch. Dave and I ate it all, on top of our tilapia tacos and with tortilla chips, just the way mom used to serve it. 🙂
Guacamole (for 2 people)
In a small bowl, combine:
1 avocado, ripe, diced
juice of half a lime
about 2 tablespoons finely diced red onion
1 jalapeno, finely diced, seeded (Team Dawmilam’s a little wimpy on the spices; if you’re brave or have a high heat tolerance, by all means, leave them in)
1 small clove garlic, crushed into a paste (start by mincing it, then sprinkle a tad bit of salt on top. Using the back of your knife, mash it until it turns into a pasty consistency).
Dash of salt
some chopped cilantro (if you don’t think it tastes like soap)
Once you’ve got all those ingredients in your bowl, take a fork and mash them together, creaming the avocado but leaving a few bigger, chunky pieces for texture. Cover with plastic wrap, placing the plastic directly on top of the guacamole to prevent browning, and store in the fridge until you’re ready to eat.
This is simple, easy, and can be made up in a hurry. I often don’t have red onions laying around, and I never substitute white onions. They’re too strong for me to eat raw. So, I sometimes leave those out. And I’ve been known to leave out the jalapenos, too, just mashing together lime juice, avocado, salt, pepper, garlic and a dash of chili powder. Enjoy!