It’s funny that one of my most-loved recipes is for a dip fondly referred to as ‘the guacs’. And yet it is the one food that my brother-in-law, Phil from Manchester, whom I shall from now on refer to as Phillipe (I sometimes will add ‘de monde’ to this), won’t touch. When Phillipe first joined my family of southern Europeans, his food mantra was ‘no onion, no garlic’. He even discussed opening a restaurant of the same name, serving, of course, meals sans onions and garlic. Heaven forbid! A right travesty that would have been. Phillipe has had to learn to let go of his Mancunian ideas of food and it is only now that he will learn the truth. Almost EVERYTHING he has eaten whilst a member of my family has contained onion and garlic. Of course, there were other no-no’s for Phillipe: prawns, carrot cake (‘how can you make a cake out of a vegetable?’ he had asked in a high-pitched shriek), burnt bits on hot chips (he meticulously cut these bits off). I have managed to break down many of Phillipe’s ideas about what thou shalt not eat. Heck, he’s even declared my humble carrot cake his favourite! But the guacs remains in the ‘definitely no’ category. So sad. For his wife, my sister, there is never enough guacamole. I sometimes make her a little bowl that she can have all to herself when I’ve made a big batch for a party. Her focus and dedication to the guacs as she sits in a corner with her personal bowl, is really something else. I’m determined to bring Phillipe over to the green side, if it’s the last thing I do (insert evil laugh here).
Alright, enough stories for now. Although I will quickly say, that yesterday whilst at the supermercado, a food demonstrator allowed me to sample her ‘four-ingredient guacamole!’. Don’t be fooled people. There is a lack of complexity in the flavours of this that I could spend a whole day talking about. And don’t get me started about the bestselling four-ingredient cookbook! C’est tragique!
On with the recipe…
2 ripe avocados, roughly chopped
1 ripe tomato, diced
1 small, red onion, finely diced
1 lemon or lime
2 teaspoons sour cream
pinch dried chilli flakes
1-2 teaspoons ground cumin
1-2 teaspoons ground coriander
a few drops of Tabasco sauce
sea salt and black pepper to taste
fresh coriander (optional)
Place chopped avocados, diced tomato and onion, into a bowl. Add sour cream and the juice of half the lemon or lime. At this point I combine the ingredients, mashing up most of the avocado but leaving some chunks. One friend likes to whiz the whole lot in a blender, but for me, the chunky bits make it.
Go gently with the next lot of ingredients, adding them to taste. Being a fan of bold, spicy flavours, I will add two pinches of chilli 2 teaspoons of the spices and a good amount of Tabasco. At this stage I will also add the rest of the lemon or lime juice. Check for a balance of heat, seasoning and freshness from the lemon or lime.
Because Mr R. and many other friends detest coriander, I usually don’t add it in. But if you can, please do. At least two tablespoons of chopped coriander mixed through and to garnish. To keep the guacs nice and fresh throughout a celebrazione, add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice every so and then, and mix.
NB Please, for the love of Allah, Buddha and Jehovah, do NOT serve the guacs with fake, cheese-flavoured tortilla chips. These are best kept for the four-ingredient variety of ‘avocado dip’. They must be plain, toasted tortilla chips people!