A truly great guacamole recipe starts with a paste made with onion, coriander/cilantro, jalapeño or serrano chilli and salt. This is the authentic way guacamole is made in Mexico and the best Mexican restaurants around the world. Try it once and you’ll be converted for life!
Whenever I make this for friends, someone always asks me for the recipe. No one can ever put their finger on it. They just know it is so much better than the usual guacamole.
Ahh, Mexicans. They are geniuses, creating what is probably the single most-made dip in this entire world.
I know some people get their pants in a wad over real guacamole. Me, I’m pretty relaxed. In my books, any dip with mashed up avocado is tasty. (Caveat: As long as it’s seasoned.) (Caveat #2: And as long as the avocado is ripe. I once had what I think was pureed unripe avocado at a
hotel motel buffet.) (Caveat #3: As long as avocado is the main ingredient, rather than the dip being mainly sour cream or cream cheese with the tiniest amount of avocado in it. Or being a green dip claiming to be guacamole but tastes suspiciously nondescript. So basically, something creamy dyed green.)
But I think anyone who has been to a great Mexican restaurant or visited Mexico can agree that there is guacamole…then there are really great guacamoles. And for most of my life, I was making it like much of the world: mashing up avocado, stirring through jalapeño, coriander, lime juice and salt. Throw in some diced tomato if I felt like it and sometimes even some sour cream.
Then I chanced upon a guacamole recipe by Thomasina Miers who won one of the UK Masterchef series. She’s gone on to open Mexican restaurants in the UK – street food style – and cooking shows. She really knows her stuff when it comes to Mexican food.
And that is how I discovered the secret to a truly great guacamole, the way it’s made in Mexico. It starts with a paste made with onion, coriander, jalapeño or serrano chillies and salt. Grind it up in a mortar and pestle (in Mexico, it is called a molcajete) or on a cutting board using a fork. And this simple paste is the foundation of a guacamole that will have your friends begging you for the recipe.
Tomato – in or out – is optional. I don’t because I love the pure flavour of avocados and tomatoes don’t add anything for me. Also, the chunkiness of the guacamole is up to you as well. Some people like it really chunky, almost salsa-ish, and others like it almost like a smooth paste. In Mexico, it was served on the chunkier side.
Even throughout Mexico, guacamole varies from region to region, restaurant to restaurant. However, the one thing I can tell you for sure is that real guacamole does not have sour cream or cream cheese in it!
Today is the day before New Years’ Eve, so this is the last recipe for the year. As a self proclaimed Snack Monster, it feels moment worthy to be signing off 2016 with my all time most favourite dip! I wish you all a Happy New Year – and I look forward to sharing more deliciousness in 2017!
– Nagi & Dozer (aka Baby Hands / Snack Monster and The Hoover/Photo Bomber) xoxo 🐾🐾
- 2 tbsp finely chopped white onion (or red, brown or yellow)
- 1 tbsp finely chopped jalapeno or serrano chilli (or other chilli of choice) (adjust to taste)
- ¼ tsp salt, plus more to taste
- ¼ cup roughly chopped coriander/cilantro leaves
- 1 large ripe Hass avocado (Note 1)
- Lime juice, to taste (I use ¼ - ½ lime)
- Optional: 1-2 ripe tomatoes, peeled, deseeded and chopped
- Place the onion, jalapeño, salt and half the coriander in a mortar and pestle. Grind into a paste (see video below or photos in post). Alternatively, place on a cutting board and use a fork or knife to mash (see video).
- Add avocado and remaining coriander, and mash coarsely.
- Do a taste test then adjust to your taste: salt, lime juice for sour, more chilli for spiciness.
- If using tomatoes, stir through.
- Serve with corn chips!
2. Guacamole really should be made just before serving. The surface starts to brown after around 45 minutes (even if you add lime to it). You can make it ahead by about 2 hours, place in an airtight container (making sure there are no air pockets below the surface because even they will brown), then cover the surface with cling wrap. Press down so it is in direct contact with the surface - any air bubbles will brown. Then place lid on the container and place in the fridge.
PREPARING AHEAD: What I do is make batches of the paste and have the coriander and lime chopped and ready to go. Then just before serving, I cut the avocados and make the guacamole - it's very quick and there are always people willing to pitch in!
3. Coriander: In the video, I ground up all the coriander into the paste rather than stirring half in later. It doesn't make a huge difference to flavour, it's up to you which way you prefer.
4. Recipe originally adapted from a recipe by Thomasina Miers but since updated to a recipe from a cookbook I purchased in Oaxaca, Mexico, called "Truly Mexican" by Roberto Santibanez. My current bible for Mexican cooking. :) Both use the same technique of an onion paste, but called for slightly different quantities and I prefer the Truly Mexican version.
5. Nutrition per serving, assuming 3 servings.
Recipe originally published 2014, updated December 2016.
Guacamole recipe video:
Guacamole recipe nutrition assuming 3 servings.
LIFE OF DOZER
Trying to get him into the spirit of New Years’ Eve! (Err….and yes, if you are looking closely you might notice the sparkly confetti is actually in the shape of Christmas trees. It’s all I have!)
Oi! Dozer! Where’s your party spirit??!!!