Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Guacamole!!!

I can eat this all day long. In fact, I ate this for dinner last night and lunch today. Mmm.... yumminess. :) I should have saved some for my uncle though. He is the self-proclaimed King of Guac. I don't think he makes it though. I think he just likes eating it. I told him on Super Bowl Sunday that I made the best and he didn't believe me. I was so distracted by eating it, I forgot to save some and swing by to give it to him! Oops...

I didn't always liked guac. In fact, I hated avocados. I'm not sure when the turning point was, but now I can't get enough of the stuff. I have cravings like a pregnant woman for the stuff. This is my weakness. Put some of my guac in front of me and a slice of Oreo cheesecake or banana bread, watch out, I'm going for the guac. Which I guess is a good thing, considering what's in Oreo cheesecake and my banana bread... :)

So I always have people asking me what I put in mine. I have to say, you put what you like in it. If you don't like onions, skip them. If you like lemon juice instead of lime juice, use that. I put what I like in my guac and in all honesty, if someone doesn't like it oh well.
But here is what I do to mine....

I start out chopping all of my veggies. I typically use the same stuff in my guac each time. Jalapenos, red onion, roma tomatoes, garlic, bell pepper (whichever color(s) you want, I used orange this time), and giardiniera. I don't put cilantro in mine b/c in all honesty, I feel like cilantro tastes like soap. I never got my mouth washed out w/ soap as a kid, and I don't want to eat something that makes me feel like I am now...

I like chunky guac. The base has to be smooth, but I like the chunks of veggies mixed in like salsa.

I always cut the avocado last. They brown after sitting, so even if they don't turn brown five minutes later, they have a shorter shelf life for however long it takes you to chop everything else up.

I never use the veins or seeds in the jalapenos. When I cut the jalapeno in half, I use the plastic bag I had them in as a "glove" and use my nail to scratch out the veins and seeds so they are completely clean. Don't worry, I add my heat other ways...
I don't skin my tomatoes, just chop them up along w/ the onion and bell peppers into a small to fine dice and I mince the garlic, but don't cream it. I love using hot giardiniera w/ my guac b/c I love spicy carrots in anything. I used to just eat spicy carrots by the bowlful at my dad's Mexican restuarant (I miss that place just for the spicy carrots. Alberto made the BEST spicy carrots). But it's really good mixed into this. The jar you see below is my fav brand b/c it has no jalapenos in it. Just pepperocini, carrot, celery, red pepper, and cauliflower. I'm not a fan of the seeded jalapeno.... But I just scoop some out of the jar, chop it all up and toss w/ with the veggies. I also toss a bit of the liquid in the chopped veggies before tossing it w/ the mashed avocado. There is some of the heat...
I had A LOT of veggies. I only had two avocados and I should have either had three, or used less veggies, but honestly, that right there is a quarter of a large red onion, two small tomatoes, one orange bell pepper, 4 small cloves of garlic, two jalapenos, and about 1/8 cup of chopped giardiniera. You'd think it wouldn't be that much, but when you add only two avocados... Well.
To cut the avocado, take your knife and slice it lengthwise around the pit. W/out squeezing too hard, twist the two halves and pull apart. If your avocado is prefectly ripe, this will be easy. The tops of one of the avocados was apparently not ripe enough and I had a lot of pulling to do...
After you have the two halves, holding the pitted side, swing the knife carefully into the pit, twist and pull the pit out. I do this instead of using a spoon to scopp it out b/c I have a tendency to be a bit of a klutz, so pits go flying... Plus, the pit comes out cleanly as opposed to possibly losing some avocado that sticks to the spoon when you scoop.

Then, using a paper towel for a better grip, pull the pit off the knife.
So you can see the halves in the picture above. What I do it take a knife and score the avocado lengthwise and then widthwise so when you scoop the avocado out w/ a spoon, it comes out in chunks. Then I use a potato masher (I have a cute mini one!) and smash it all up. When it's in chunks, it makes it easier to smash. I should have gone out to get a third avocado, but I didn't mind the extra chunkiness to this batch.
Then mix it all together! You're not done yet! Squirt the juice from one lime over the mix for flavor and help keep the avocado fresh. Then, if you like more heat, do what I do and shake some Tabascio sauce on top, grated some fresh black pepper, sprinkle a pinch of salt and then mix it all together!
If you are making a lot, store some of it in an airtight container in the fridge. A new trick I learned from Ivy at Kopiaste... (check out her guac recipe posted 4/7/09) is too keep the pit in the guac. It keeps the bright green color and prevents the avocado from browning and going bad too quickly. I put this half in the fridge to save for work today and when I opened it at work, it was as bright green as you see here. But if you're having a party and have a big batch of it, don't leave it all out at once. It will definitely go brown quickly since it is exposed to air and all of the chips and veggies are getting dipped in... It's best to leave out a dip bowl and add to it when needed. Plus chilled guac is soooo much better than room temp guac!
These go best w/ thick tortilla chip, like yellow corn tortillas. They're ideal for scooping up big heaping piles of guac. Mmm.... I kinda wish I still had some left to eat now...

6 comments:

Ivy said...

Hi Niki. I am glad you posted your guac and to see that we are on the same wave line. I was not sure if I was right not adding the cilantro (I love it but I can't find cilantro nor the jalapenos easily in Greece) so I added pepperoncini instead. Now hear the funny part. My friend Ben who is Mexican added a comment tonight that the thing about the pit is just a myth something like the cork and octopus, which I never use.

NikiTheo said...

That's funny that Ben said that b/c I was telling my friend about the pit and she said she was told to do that by people she knew that were of Mexican descent. I don't know if it works beyond the next day b/c I ate the rest of the guac, but I felt that it helped. I'm still gonna do it! I don't think it'll hurt any, right?

Holler said...

Your guacamole looks great! Really tasty. I loved the tip about leaving the stone in with your guac. I will try that next time I makes some :)

Peter M said...

Niki, sounds & looks yum...good for fasting too!

Kali Anastasi and see you on the other side of Easter.

pinkstripes said...

I love guacamole too. I'll eat all variations. YUM.

The Food Librarian said...

Yum! I love guac and this looks fantastic!!

You won! You won one of my giveaways for National Library Week! Please check my blog and congrats! - mary the food librarian