Guacamole is a dip made of avocados! Guacamole needs no introduction. It is one of those indulgent dips that once you start eating, you cannot resist the next bite and then the next.
Once you have made guacamole at home, I assure you that you will never buy the greeny mess from supermarkets ever again. Although guacamole is amazingly simple to make, it is easy to mess up too!
Few years ago, I was visiting my family in India and I decided to make Mexican food for ‘raksha bandhan (a festival wherein sisters tie a sacred thread on their brother’s wrist to reaffirm their love for each other. It is a symbol of love and well-being in the sacred relationship).
It was quite easy to buy all the ingredients. I was thrilled that I could buy avocados from a specialty shop as I had my suspicions about it being readily available (this was nearly 8-9 years ago). My excitement was short lived as those avocados were hard as a rock and would not ripen even after 2 weeks. I realized that I should have chosen them more carefully. I did buy another batch, and all was well! Moral of the story was to make sure you buy the right avocado. I have explained how to choose the avocado in the tips section.
I love this dish soo much that I have indulged myself in an authentic Mexican pestle and mortar. No preservatives, or mayonnaise or sour cream in mine! Amazingly simple fresh ingredients made the Mexican way! I do not mess around when it comes to guacamole. Guacamole is just one of those foods that makes people happy. So, it’s important to get it right.
Peel the onion and deseed the chilli, then roughly chop it all into quarters.
Put the onion, chilli in a mortar and mash to a rough paste.
Destone the avocados and scoop the flesh into the mortar (or bowl is mortar is too small).
Roughly mash the avocado with a fork.
Add some lime juice, salt and chopped coriander and give it a good mix.
Taste the guacamole to adjust the seasoning.
Tips & Variations
- For the best guacamole try not to over mash or puree the avocados. Traditional guacamole should be a chunky dip, not a completely smooth one.
- As mentioned before ripe avocados are essential for the best guacamole. To check if avocado is ready gently squeeze the avocado with the palm of your hand (do not use your fingertips, they will bruise it). If it yields slightly, it is ready to eat. If it does not yield and feels firm, it needs a day or two. If it gives easily, it is probably overripe and possible brown inside.
- Give your guacamole 4-5 minutes to rest so the lime juice, salt, avocado, and onion really meld into each other. That way when you taste it, you will know whether it needs more of any other ingredients.
- There is nothing worse than a under seasoned guacamole. This fatty fruit demands a good amount of seasoning, especially salt. Add the salt gradually, tasting as you go, and you will see what a big difference a little extra salt does for making a great guacamole.
- The best avocados for guacamole are the Hass varieties. You might be tempted to buy the big avocados that come from Florida because it means more guacamole, but those avocados contain more water which does not make for a great guacamole.
- For a smoky crunchy variation, you can top the guacamole with any unsalted roasted seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, melon) before serving.
- I like to top my guacamole with fresh pomegranate seeds sometimes especially when pomegranate is in season.
- If you prefer smooth guacamole pulse the mixture in a food processor and check frequently to make sure it is not getting too smooth.
- Like most dishes made with avocado, guacamole is best when freshly prepared. However, if you would like to prepare the guacamole ahead of time, press a layer of cling film directly on top of the surface of your guacamole so that there are no air touching the dip.
- To ripen the avocados at home place them in a paper bag. Make sure to roll up the top of the paper bag and keep at room temperature. They should be noticeably softer in a day or two!
- I usually use fresh jalapeños while making guacamole. If you want to leave out the chilli entirely, you can add a couple of pinches of crushed red pepper flakes, or a couple teaspoons of your favourite hot sauce.
- You can use any variety of chilli while making guacamole. Do judge the heat of the chilli before adding as you want a chilli kick to the guacamole but not hot.
- If you like garlic, you can add 1 clove of garlic too.
- You can also add finely chopped deseeded tomatoes just before serving. It gives a different texture to the guacamole. However, remember that the tomatoes release their juices as soon as they touch salt, hence, add just before serving or maybe just put it on top.
- Do not use underripe avocado as it will give a bitter taste to the guacamole.
- Limes helps in retaining the nice green colour of the avocado. You can add a bit of lime juice while breaking up the avocado to avoid discolouring.