I promised you guest bloggers, and here is my first guest recipe, submitted by Justin! Justin’s guacamole is just as amazing as the chunky guacamole, but it has one special feature: pickled jalapenos which are easy to find all year round, and obviously keep much longer.
Justin’s recipe is a little more free form – so you can make this guacamole for one, or some. Enjoy:
Avocados: If your avocados aren’t ripe, your guac won’t measure up–it all starts here. They should be almost black and somewhat soft. When you press lightly on the avocado, it should give easily–not mushy soft like it has evaporated inside its skin, but definitely soft. Depending on where you live, finding ripe avocados can be nearly impossible, so if you’re thinking of making guacamole this weekend, go out tonight or tomorrow and look for them. If they are still firm and slightly greenish, buy them and buy an over ripe banana and then put the avocados and banana in a paper bag and let them set for a day or two. The overripe banana releases a chemical that accelerates the ripening of other fruits around them (including avocados). Figure one avocado for every two people–if you’re making it for 5 or more people then get an extra avocado for every few people (over and above the 1:2 ratio I mentioned above).
Jalapenos: Buy sliced jalapenos in a jar. Don’t buy fresh jalapenos in the vegetable dept of a grocery store–they don’t provide as much spice or flavor. Also, under no circumstances, ever, ever, ever buy canned jalapenos–there’s a special place in hell for people who buy canned jalapenos.
Onion: Be careful–don’t use too much or the onion flavor will take over the guacamole. Chop it into small pieces (not quite minced, but pretty small)
Tomato: Nice and ripe, but remove the liquid and seeds so that you’re only adding the “meat” of the tomato. I like medium chopped so you have some real tomato chunks in the guacamole.
Salt: Use more salt than you think is appropriate.
Lime: one lime–cut it in half and squeeze one of the halves into the guacamole.
Jalapeno juice: If you want a slightly creamer guacamole, add a little liquid from my the jar of jalapenos.
Cilantro: It should be fresh and very aromatic, and then just finely mince a table spoon or two of it, and it will add a nice element to the guacamole.
Frankly, all you need to make kick-ass guacamole is fresh, ripe avocados, salt, and jalapenos. 80% of the time, that’s all I use. Use way more jalapenos and salt than you think makes sense. The heat from the jalapenos and the saltiness will be overwhelmed by the avocado, so be liberal.
- Here’s a short summary (with ingredient quantities on a per avocado basis) …fyi, I cook to taste, so the quantities are my best guess.
- Avocado: Lightly mashed. …lightly, because you will mix it a lot as you add salt, jalapenos, and the other ingredients, so you don’t want to mash it too much at first or the guacamole will be totally creamy–it’s nice to have some chunks.
- Salt: 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon per avocado–maybe a bit more, but start there.
- Jalapenos: 10 – 15 slices per avocado, finely minced. Really small pieces will permeate the dip better and add a consistent heat to the whole dish.
- Onion: Somewhere b/w 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon per avocado (Err on the lighter side to start with).
- Tomato: 1 rounded tablespoon of medium-chopped tomato per avocado–maybe a shade less.
- Mix in each ingredient as you add it and taste as you go.
This probably sounds more complicated than it is, but it’s one of the easiest ways to impress your friends and shatter their illusions of their own culinary skills.
And there it is. Feel free to write and let Justin know how you liked it.
Photo Credit: Sean