So…it’s officially BBQ season guys! Actually…my BBQ season started several weeks ago – possibly slightly too early because we kinda froze a bit on the balcony and had to take things inside fairly soon after food was ready. But still…food was BBQ-d and some time was spent outside with a drink in my hand. It qualifies. (Honestly…I figure if the BBQ lights, it’s BBQ season. I have definitely BBQ-d in more than a couple of thunderstorms and in a snow drift.)
Now, I dunno bout you but besides burgers and potato salad, the first thing that comes to mind when I think of BBQ season, or really summer in general, is guacamole!!!!!
In my house, guacamole would often be the “vegetable” for summer dinners, despite the fact that the only ‘vegetable’ in it is red onion. While this may seem odd, in my family, if the vegetable wasn’t swimming in a pool of butter, cream, and/or cheese, it didn’t generally get served, let alone eaten. At the very least, it was eaten in sparse amounts. So, I guess when you take that into consideration, guac for ‘vegetables’ doesn’t sound too bad. At least we kids didn’t complain. (But what kid complains about nachos and dip for dinner?)
If guac wasn’t the vegetable for summer dinners, it would at least be the appetizer while Dad BBQ-d the rest of dinner. I guess that’s why BBQ and guacamole always go together in my mind.
And because guac became (and still is) our family’s bona fide summer dinner salad, the flavours of guac have also become synonymous with summer; all that cilantro, lime and avocado…yum!!!
All of these things together meant that when I was invited to the above-mentioned BBQ, I immediately asked if I could bring the guac. The response was a resounding, YES!
So brought the guac I did and had several requests for the recipe over the course of the evening. While most people ate the guac as it was intended (on nacho chips), I put it on my burger along with my vegan ‘cheese’ slice, lettuce and onion. I also brought some of my Paleo-ish Naan which I made specifically to be used as burger buns. The whole thing was the perfect start to what I hope will be a fabulous BBQ season (despite all the rain and flooding to date…).
Speaking of BBQ season, I have a bit of an update on my backyard garden re-do. While I’ve barely planted anything yet (I’ve been out of town the past three weekends. Twice in TO and once in Albany volunteering for the CrossFit Regionals. It was SO FREAKIN COOL! I can’t wait to do it again next year), I have (and when I say, “I”, I mean my Dad who was visiting earlier this week has) done more work on clearing the yard to make it more habitable. We even made an IKEA run for some patio furniture, but of course, they were out of the one table set I wanted, so I have to go back.
Anywho, just in time for me to plant new things in my garden, a freakin’ groundhog has moved in! Seriously?! In the middle of the city?! The critter is cute, but so far, the lavender I’ve planted is sitting in planters on a high table so that he doesn’t eat them. He has pretty much gnawed the lilies to a stump and has cleared most ground-level twigs of their foliage. That being said, he has also eaten ALL of the dandelions that I had in my backyard last year, so I’m tots cool with that.
But…now what do I do about the plants that I want to actually grow?! Do any of you have any suggestions on how to get rid of a groundhog? I have chicken wire and stakes, but have a feeling he will find a way to burrow under those to get to the goods. I’m also going to try bloodmeal in the soil. I started with Lavender in my backyard because it’s supposed to deter squirrels (and groundhogs are pretty much large squirrels, or at least I thought that was the case…)but he ate half of 2 of my plants! Rawr! Am open to any suggestions you’ve got guys!
Ok…back to the post which I’ve posted for all y’all at the above-mentioned BBQ who requested this recipe (you know who you were). This is it…the recipe that has been perfected over the years in the Richards-Boaks household. The utterly perfect, bewilderingly simple, tastiest Guacamole EVER!!!
The utterly perfect, bewilderingly simple, tastiest Guacamole EVER!!!
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Total Time: 10 mins
- Yield: ~ 1 1/2 cups
- 2 medium avocados (in a happy slightly squishy state between rock-like and pure mush)
- 1-1 1/2 limes, juiced
- 1 medium clove garlic, minced in a pinch of salt
- 1/4-1/3 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1/4 medium red onion, diced
- 1/2 medium ripe tomato, diced
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Quarter your avocados and put the flesh in a medium mixing bowl. Save the pits.
- Add the juice of 1 lime as well as most of each of your minced garlic, chopped cilantro, diced red onion to the bowl.
- Mash/mix contents with a fork until uniformly mixed, but avocado is still chunky.
- Add your diced tomato and some salt and pepper. Stir with a fork until uniformly mixed.
- Adjust flavour for limey-ness, cilantro, salt and pepper as you prefer. You may also need to adjust for onion and garlic flavours, keeping in mind that the garlic and onion flavours will get stronger as the guac sits for an hour or so. For this reason, I usually adjust lime/cilantro and salt/pepper levels before adding more onion or garlic, particularly garlic. Obviously, also adjust for your own flavour preferences. I prefer guac that is more limey and acidic than garlicky.
- If you’re storing your guac for a couple of hours (or days) before serving, put the pits back into the middle of the guac. It will keep it from going brown!
- Otherwise, garnish with some chopped cilantro and extra diced onion or tomato and serve right away with nachos or on top of your favourite summer BBQ dish.
- Pro tip for picking avocados: If you’re not sure what the quality of the avocado will be based on the squish-factor, if you can easily pick the stem bud out of the pointy end and look at the colour of the avocado under it, you will know whether you have a winner or not. If the stem bud comes out with relative ease, and the avocado flesh underneath is a lovely, bright green, you’re good to go. If the stem bud is a b*stard to get out, the avocado isn’t ripe enough to squish for guac. If the flesh underneath is browny-grey, don’t even go there.
- Pro tip for picking any kind of citrus fruit: Look at the quality of the skin. If it’s smooth, shiny, and slightly squishy, chances are the pith is thinner and you’ll have more juicy flesh. If the skin is still dimpled and the fruit is like a rock (particularly with lemons), the pith is still likely pretty thick and has less juicy flesh.
- Pro tip for mincing garlic: An old chef’s trick for mincing garlic, particularly if you’re mincing it on a chopping block, it’s best to sprinkle some rock salt over the garlic clove before chopping so that the garlic oils are absorbed by the salt (which you end up adding to your guacamole) than the chopping board.
- Final pro tip: Make sure you get cilantro within 1-2 days of making your guac. It’s insane how much better the guac tastes when you use super fresh cilantro.
Now…keep in mind that this was my first attempt at actually writing this recipe down. You may have to make adjustments as you make it based on the avocado ripeness, the pungency of your garlic, the freshness of your cilantro and the juiciness of your limes. But this is the general recipe.
Perfect to eat on its own with nachos (if you can eat corn, that is), on BBQ-d chicken, with steak, on salmon, with shrimp, on salad with mango salsa, on anything Tex-Mex, or just plain Mex, the list goes on…
Per usual if you have any questions about the recipe or want to leave a comment, please do so below or you can shoot me an email! This week’s post is a bit shorter than usual. Maybe that’s a good thing. It gives you more time to make this guac (!) which you should do…nnnnnnnnow!
I’m cooking up some fabulous ideas in my kitchen every week, so stay tuned for more Summery fabulousness! The current flavours and ideas running through my head are everything strawberry rhubarb and lilacs and pie. I wonder what will come of that in the end. Hmmmmm….
Also…I just found out that my Blood Orange Passionfruit Sangria was featured in thefeedfeed’s Champagne and Prosecco post!!! Do you know what goes well with BBQs and guacamole? Sangria. Sangria and Patios! Ohhhh yea….
Ciao for now folks! Have a happy sunny weekend!