You say “Avocado!”, I say “Guacamole!”

DSC_3865_02It happened the other day… I was chatting with a very good friend of mine and the question came up:

“What should I have for dinner?”

Logically, my answer was, “Well, what’s in your refrigerator?”

“Nothing. I only have…”

She then proceeded to list, what I would consider, the contents of the mini supermarket:

aubergines
sweet potatoes
lemons
ginger
coriander
tomatoes
onions
avocado
…oh and a mango.

I was stunned. If that’s nothing, I don’t want to know what something would be!

After a much-deserved ridiculing, I went back through the list and picked out my favourite ingredient of them all: avocado. The most amazingly nutritious and delicious fruit that has ever graced this green Earth and, of course, our kitchens!

Yes, it is the archenemy of the “eat local” and “reduce your carbon footprint” regimes (unless, of course, you happen to live in the subtropics, in which case the exotic avocado is your next door neighbour and best friend). But who can resist the creamy texture of a ripe avocado? I certainly can’t (and won’t)!

So here’s the simplest of recipes that I know for this delectable fruit. It’s fresh, delicious and will make you want to top off every food shop with an avocado.

avocado

Guacamole

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 2 small tomatoes (or a handful of cherry tomatoes)
  • 1 or 2 slice(s) of a small onion
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice (or lime juice if you’ve got it!)
  • pinch of salt
  • a sprig of coriander (optional)
  • 1 bag of tortilla chips

Serves 2-3 as a starter

Preparation TIme:

10 minutes

  1. Use your knife to cut the avocado in half. Allow pit to guide your knife as you cut your avocado lengthwise. Then twist the two halves to open. Take the half containing the pit and gently tap the blade of the knife against the centre of the pit (mind your fingers and hands when doing this… good aim is essential!). Once it is sufficiently lodged in, twist to remove. (Sometimes it takes a few tries, so remember: If at first you don’t succeed… try, try again!)
  2. Using a fork, roughly scoop out the meat of the avocado and place it into a bowl. Squash the pieces with the fork until the avocado becomes a thick paste. (Some people prefer their guacamole to be smooth and creamy, but I, personally, like it best a bit chunky. It gives it a bit of a rustic look and has a nice texture.)
  3. Roughly chop the tomatoes. Dice a small amount of raw onion. (I say about 1 slice, but you can add more or less depending on your affinity towards onions.)
  4. Throw everything into the bowl, add about a tablespoon of lemon juice and the torn leaves from a sprig of coriander (optional). Mix well and salt to taste. Serve with tortilla chips.

Buon appetito!

PS: In helping my friend decide on what she was to eat for dinner, I realised I love making my brain work to come up with something nice to eat… especially when there is a limited pantry involved. If any of you need any help deciding what to put on the table, do let me know… I’m always up for a culinary challenge!

Chef’s Tips:

  • To keep your guacamole from going brown, as avocados do when they are exposed to air, keep the pit and put it in the middle of your guacamole. Amazingly enough, it will keep it looking fresh and green for longer.
  • If you only plan to eat half an avocado, keep the pit in the half you plan to save for another day, cover it with plastic wrap and stick it in fridge. It will help it stay green-ish. However, you should plan to consume the second half within the next day or two.
  • Keep the pit and try to grow it! Stick four toothpicks in about halfway down the pit and submerge the bottom half in water. Supposedly in about six weeks, you should have the makings of an avocado tree. (As I am the exact opposite of a green thumb (hilariously known as a brown thumb), I cannot vouch for this. Let me know if you succeed!)
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