Tag Archives: Guacamole

Mexico revisited – Guacamole

4 Jul

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I started liking guacamole when I first dined at a small ‘hole in the wall” restaurant named Hot Salsa Kitchen in Annandale in Sydney (now closed). I had previously tried it many times but until that occasion, I had only disappointed my taste buds with bland, uninteresting or unauthentic guacamole which was usually suffocating in sour cream. Theirs was simple, creamy and balanced. This was until of course until I tried the one at El Asadero in Tulum. That’s when I went from liking to falling in love with guacamole.

True guacamole in my opinion starts with the aguacate (avocado). The aguacate must be of the highest quality, not bruised or scared, ripe but not overripe or soft and preferably of the creamier type like Hass or the buttery type like Shepard. The rest of the ingredients are there to decorate, accentuate and elevate the aguacate.

Some people like to add garlic and ground cumin, I believe both are unnecessary. White onion is already featured and cumin is likely to form one of the spices in the accompanying dishes especially if its Mexican. To soften the intensity of the onion, I usually rub with salt or sprinkle with salt then beat a few times with the pestle.

  • 4 Hass Avocadoes
  • 1/4 white onion diced finely
  • 1/2 a bunch of coriander chopped roughly
  • 2 tomatoes skin removed, deseeded and flesh chopped up finely
  • 2 small limes
  • Salt

If you have a mortar and pestle (molcajete) use it. Otherwise mash using a fork. Those who choose to use a blender should not refer to it as guacamole but rather blended avocado dip. In my opinion, it loses its character if blended. Blending will ensure that it is void of the various lumpy bits of aguacate which contrast well with the coriander and tomato embodied within the mole.

Start off with the coriander and onion. Sprinkle say 1/4 of a teaspoon of salt over the onion, then beat lightly until the juice is released.

Add avocado flesh, squeeze the limes and continue mashing.

Add tomatoes, beat a little and then switch over to a spoon. Mix it together.

Taste and add more salt or lime if required.

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Mexico revisited – The sequel

20 Jun

Following on from Sunday’s menu, I’ve decided to fill in a few blanks and elaborate on my initial post Mexico revisited. The dishes that I cherish most and frequently cook are those that I almost prepare instinctively. I often ring up my mother for guidance on some of the complicated Lebanese dishes and ask her for the recipe. Her response revolves around something like “Let me have a think. Its one or two cups of this, a few teaspoons of this, a pinch of that…”. Its no surprise, she’s been making those dishes for over 40 years. So here goes, just like my mother, I’ve tried to retrace my footsteps and included as much detail as possible.

Click below (I will post recipes shortly):

Pollo Pibil

Carne Asada

Frijoles Refritas

Guacamole

Pico de Gallo

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Mexico revisited

17 Jun

When it comes to cooking (and other things too), I often wonder why I can’t do things half way, why it always has to be a multitude of dishes instead of the basic few. It probably has to do with two things: influences and experiences.

My upbringing has a lot to do with my influences, particularly in relation to offering the utmost level of hospitality. My family background is Lebanese and ever since I could remember sitting around a table, almost every meal was elaborate, varied and complete. Elaborate because dining is sacred, varied because not everyone likes the same thing and complete because one must tantalize with a starter, enjoy the main(s) and end off on a sweet note, dessert.

Experiences? Besides offering a satisfying meal, I feel it’s vital that I share my dining experiences with my guest and try to recreate with as much authenticity the dishes that I have indulged in. I have traveled to several countries and almost on every occasion emphasis has been paid to food ahead of sight seeing, and, souvenir shopping. From street food to fine dining, local markets to supermarkets, sipping on the local street beverages to the luxurious rooftop bars, I believe it’s a must that we delve deep into the gastronomical zone as it gives a greater understanding of the culture. It’s what makes us culturally different that is of great interest and food definitely forms a great part of people’s culture and must not be overlooked.

So what’s on Sunday’s menu? Pollo Pibil, Carne Cozida, Guacamole, Pico de Gallo, Corn Tortillas and Frijoles Refritas inspired of course by the streets of Mexico from Mexico City to Oaxaca and of course the Yucatan.

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