Guacamole | Avocado Dip and Spread

This household was eating avocados long before they became de rigueur in the Australian cafe sub-cuisine. This is how we have been making guacamole since the 1990’s.

The most basic guacamole is simply avocado mashed with garlic, lemon, salt and pepper. The velvety texture of avocado, and the zing of the lime that cuts through the smoothness just as you’re getting comfortable with it. Then comes the bite of the garlic. The flavours  blend beautifully together and yet at the same time, all flavours are distinctly identifiable.

The good thing is that the basic recipe can be endlessly varied. We include a number of variations in our recipe below – tomato, coriander, chilli, sour cream, yoghurt – all manner of things can be added to the basic blend. You can vary guacamole so each time you make it, it is different.

Some say that leaving the avocado stone in the puree will prevent discolouration. My view is that if the guacamole’s around long enough to find out, you’re not doing it right.

Are you after other Avocado dishes? Try Cold Avocado Soup, Avocado and Strawberry Salad, and Avocado Smash with Radishes.

You can browse all of our Avocado recipes and Salsa dishes. Check out our easy Late Summer recipes too.

This recipe is one of the vegetarian recipes from our first blog which was in existence from 1995 – 2006.  Feel free to browse other recipes from our Retro Recipes series.

Guacamole

Guacamole | Mexican-Style Avocado Salsa

basic recipe
2 ripe medium avocados or 1 very large one
juice 1 lemon or 1 – 2 limes
2 – 3 cloves garlic, minced
sea salt and black pepper to taste

optional additions prior to mashing or blending – if mashing, dice or grate the onion, fresh chilli and tomato finely, or if blending, chop coarsely
mayonnaise, creme fraiche, sour cream or yoghurt
1 small tomato
chilli powder to taste, or 1-2 fresh green chillies
a little white onion
leaves from 4 – 5 springs fresh coriander, chopped

optional additions after blending
0.5 – 1 green or red pepper, diced
1 small red onion, finely diced
1 small cucumber, finely diced
pitted olives, chopped
1 tomato, diced

method
Gather together the basic recipe ingredients and any additions to be added prior to mashing or blending. Mash or blend in a food processor or blender until creamy.

Add any further additions after blending (if any) and stir. It is best not to double up on ingredients – for example, if you add onion prior to blending, don’t add chopped onion after blending.

Taste, and adjust seasonings (chilli, lemon, salt, pepper). Serve with tortillas and corn chips.

Guacamole | Mexican-Style Avocado Salsa

recipe notes and alternatives.
Mashing the avocado with a fork or back of a spoon can produce a chunky guacamole (I love it!), or use a blender or food processor for a smooth one.

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Avocado Salsa with Deep Fried Tortilla Crisps

Avocado has been so popular for the past decade that it is almost passé. But here we love the out of favour but full of flavour recipes, so in the dying moments of the avocado obsession, we bring you a keeper recipe – avocado salsa with the flavours of lemon, chilli, tomato and coriander. Enjoy!

There are oodles of ways to use this salsa – on toast, with corn chips, to top a lentil salad, for example. We have included 2 ways – serve as a snack or appetiser with fried tortilla crisps, or atop a salad of new potatoes.

Similar recipes include Guacamole, Avocado with Tomato-Chilli Salsa, Walnut and Pomegranate Dip, Cold Avocado Soup, Avocado Smash, and Pomelo, Ruby Grapefruit and Avocado Salad.

Browse all of our Avocado recipes, and all of our Dips. Or be inspired by our Mid Spring recipes.

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Soupa de Habas | Mexican Fava Bean Soup with Saffron

Recently we made a Mexican dried fava bean soup, full of chilli, garlic and herbs, and very delicious. Today’s Fava Bean soup, also from Mexico, is full of garlic, chilli, cumin and saffron, and really is very good. I think it has become my second favourite fava bean soup. We have a larder full of all sorts of dried broad beans this year, so it definitely will be a broad bean Winter!

The secret of this soup is a recado – a flavoursome and aromatic puree of tomatoes, garlic and onions that is fried off and used as a soup base.

Fava bean soups generally fall into two categories – the style that features the texture and flavour of the beans, and the style that uses the creaminess of the beans as a base for other flavours. Both are wonderful winter soups, and the Mexican style falls into the last category.

Similar dishes include Fava Bean Soup with Roast Garlic, Mint and Coriander, Fava Bean Soup with Potatoes, Fava Bean Soup or Dip with Herbs, and Fava Bean Soup with Turmeric and Herbs.

Browse all of our Fava Bean dishes, and all of our Soups. Or explore our Late Autumn recipes.

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Roasted Chilli Sweetcorn Salad and Feta

Welcome to Sweetcorn Season. Mostly we eat the whole corns raw – the sweetness is most intense when it is raw. We nibble away at those juicy corns, getting the skins stuck between our teeth and occasionally finding one of those long sweetcorn hairs in our mouths. But, boy, they are juicy and best eaten like this outdoors.

Sometimes we steam them and slaver them in butter. This is how we ate them as children. Later on I learned to add coarsely ground black pepper. Still later we added chilli and lime juice. And I began to roast them rather than steam them, covering them in their natural wrapping and throwing them on the BBQ or indoor grill. Even later, I learned to cook them as they do for Indian Street Food.

Just occasionally, we remove the cooked kernels and pop them into salads, or make sweetcorn salads in their own right. This recipe today is such a sweetcorn salad, one with the Mexican tangs of chilli and lime juice.

You might like to also try Grilled Corn with Miso-Tamarind Mayo, Sweetcorn Sundal (an Indian salad), Tomato and Sweetcorn Soup, or a similar cold soup.

Other salads that might take your fancy include: Cherry Tomato Salad with Soy Dressing, Asparagus Salad, or Buckwheat Salad.

You can browse all of our Sweetcorn Recipes, our Salad recipes, or take some time to check out our Late Summer Recipes.

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Green Tomato Salsa with Green Coriander and Chilli

Since the garden has includes some tomato bushes I have been playing around with green tomatoes, and adore them a lot. In the simplest form, they go amazingly well in salads, and mixed in with ripe tomatoes to top your pasta dinner. This recipe is a Salsa and it plays to the green tomato’s flavour and texture. I hope you enjoy it.

Similar recipes include Green Tomato Sambar, and Green Tomato and Mozzarella Salad.

If you are after other similar recipes, try Green Tomato and Fresh Mozzarella Salad, Avocado Salsa, Green Tomato and Pineapple Salsa, Tomato Salsa, Peach Salsa and Pawpaw Salsa.

You can browse all of our Salsa Recipes here, all of our Green Tomato Recipes here, and all of our Tomato Recipes here. Or take some time and browse our Late Summer recipes.

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All about Chillies and Chilli Types

Chillies are a common ingredient in many cuisines. There are many different species, all containing capsaicin, a biologically active ingredient beneficial to the respiratory system, blood pressure and heart. Did you know there are more than 300 varieties of chilli?

The chilli plant is an erect, branched, shrub-like herb with fruits used as garnishing and flavouring. Chillies are a common ingredient in many cuisines – Indian, Thai and Mexican to name a few. There are many different species, about 200 have been identified, all containing capsaicin, a biologically active ingredient beneficial to the respiratory system, blood pressure and heart. Capsaicin is the cause of the heat and has the effect of stimulating the palate and increasing blood circulation. This makes the body sweat, which in turn has a cooling effect. That is why chillies are so dominant in tropical areas.

Continue reading “All about Chillies and Chilli Types”