Five-step killer guacamole

This simple guacamole recipe is a must, whether you’re getting ready for a Día de muertos party or just hankering for a delicious snack.

A perfectly ripe avocado. Photo by You As a Machine via Flickr

Ever put out a bowl of guacamole and not have it devoured within minutes?

There’s something about that creamy green flesh and bite of acidity that pleases almost every palate. Plus, the widely-reported health benefits of avocados are enough of a reason to chow down (never mind that a single serving is meant to be about a measly quarter of an avocado). Besides, unlike that pint of Cherry Garcia, it’s a mostly-nutritious guilty pleasure — as long as you don’t plow through an entire bag of tortilla chips in the process.

The recipe below, by yours truly, has received rave reviews at family functions, drunken barbecues, potlucks, etc. The secret ingredient is cilantro (or coriander. Same diff). Apparently cilantro is a dividing line in cuisine: you either love it or you hate it. I used to hate it, until I started making this guacamole. So if you find yourself on the losing side of that line, do yourself a favour and try it again in this recipe.

Five-step killer guacamole

Prep: 10 min., serves a few gluttons or six to eight normal people
6 ripe avocados
Half-cup of finely chopped onion
2-3 cloves of garlic, either pressed or finely chopped
1 cup fresh cilantro
1 lime
1 lemon
1 small tomato
Half to one whole red bell pepper
1 small jalapeno pepper
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Finely dice the onion, garlic and jalapeno, and cut the tomato and bell pepper into small cubes (use a serrated knife for the tomato). Do a rough chop on the cilantro. Everything except the onion and garlic can go hang out in a bowl (ideally non-metallic).

2. Put the onion and garlic in a frying pan with the butter (or oil, if you must) and cook on medium until they sweat — make sure they don’t turn brown! Remove from heat.

3. Cut avocados in halves, (carefully!) use butt of chopping knife to remove pits and use a spoon to scoop out the flesh. Put them in the bowl with the veggies and mash with a fork until desired consistency (slightly chunky’s the best!).

4. Juice the lemon and lime and mix in with the avocado mixture — an excess of citrus will only be your friend here. Throw in the slightly cooled garlic and onion and stir with the fork.

5. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Serve with tortilla chips or in tacos.

If you’re partial to garlic burps and/or nightmares, don’t cook the garlic and onion. That said, the butter adds a nice, subtle flavour to the guacamole, and the onion sweetens up a bit when cooked. Also, don’t skimp on the citrus — it adds a splash of freshness, and the acidity helps prevent the guacamole from turning brown.

Fun trivia to amaze/gross out friends with: You may know that guacamole literally translates to “avocado sauce,” but did you know aguacate, the Spanish word for avocado, is based on an indigenous word for “testicle”? Delicious! 

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