Day 7: Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Today’s post will be short and sweet – I’ve got tons of delicious food to eat and margaritas to drink! But if you’re anything like me, you’ve procrastinated a bit with your planning and still haven’t made anything to bring to the fiesta. Thank goodness guacamole comes together in under 10 minutes and Cinco de Mayo is one day where it’s totally socially acceptable to survive on chips and dips!

This is a really basic, standby recipe but you can definitely personalize it any way you’d like. Feeling like you want something a bit more caliente? Keep the seeds in or add more jalapeños (or maybe some crushed red peppers or hot sauce). Completely abhor cilantro? You can totally leave it out.

First things first, you need to have ripe avocados and of course you probably have a 24-hour window where they’re perfect. Best way to check – pick that little brown nub off the top and check the color underneath. The color should be a perfect shade of green, it it’s too pale wait a day and if it’s two brown you waited too long (but you can still use that avocado in a sauce, as long as it’s not too far gone).

Ripe avocado guide
Ripe avocado guide

Obviously avocados are delish on their own, but for a really solid guacamole you’ll need to punch up the flavor. I like to add in garlic, onion, cilantro, jalapeño, a smidge of cumin, lime juice, pepper and some salt. They say the aromatics (onion, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro) are best after they’ve been crushed – it helps to release the flavor and makes them easier to incorporate into the guac. To do this, I mashed them in a bowl (since I lack a mortar and pestle) with some salt which also helps to release some of the juices.

Get those flavors going!
Get those flavors going!

Now to add in the star of the show! Split each avocado in half, remove the pit and use your knife to create cubes while the fruit (veggie? Is science still out on this?) is still in the skin. Once the avocados are cubed, use your knife to scrape the cubes out and into the bowl with the aromatics. I enjoy my guac a bit on the chunky side, so I typically mash in half of my avocados and stir in the rest, but that’s a personal preference. Squeeze in the juice of one lime ASAP to keep the vibrant green color (so pretty!).

Almost done - so green
Not the prettiest, but definitely the tastiest!

Once the main ingredients are combined, I throw in a sprinkling of salt, pepper, cumin and additional lime juice to taste and maybe some tomatoes if they’re on hand. Now you should be prepped for your fiesta! Grab a bag of your favorite chips, your favorite margarita, and enjoy!

Basic Guacamole
Serves 8-10
Cook time: about 10 minutes, depending on your knife skills

Ingredients:
• 4 avocados
• ½ medium yellow onion, diced
• 2 jalapeños, seeds and ribs removed, diced
• 1 clove garlic, minced
½ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
• 2 limes
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon pepper
• ½ – 1 teaspoon cumin (optional)

Directions:
1. In a medium-sized bowl (or mortar and pestle if you’re fancy), mash onion, jalapeños, garlic and cilantro with salt until fragrant and a little juicy.
2. Mash or fold in avocados based on preference
3. Squeeze juice of one lime over guacamole and gently stir to incorporate
4. Season with salt, pepper, cumin, and additional lime juice to taste
5. Enjoy with an ice-cold marg!

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