There are few things better than a bowl of great guacamole. It seems like an unwritten rule of life that almost everyone loves guacamole. We love it so much that we're willing to pay $2 to add a tiny dollop of it to a burrito bowl at Chipotle. I've also never seen anyone complain when someone orders it as an appetizer. Since it turns brown if not eaten, we justify eating ridiculous quantities because "it will go bad if it's not eaten now."  I personally judge Mexican restaurants based on two things: 1) margaritas 2) guacamole. If they pass with both of those, I really couldn't care less about the rest of the food. I'm a happy camper.

Guacamole is easy to make, but it's also easy to add too much of one ingredient and accidentally ruin the entire batch. It then becomes a desperate attempt to even out the flavors, and this almost always backfires because unless you have spare avocados you're probably out of luck (and the avocados from the store are never ripe right away). This is my go-to guacamole recipe. It's based on Alton Brown's guacamole, which has a five star rating and 634 reviews. Let's take a second to think about that. More than 630 people of all culinary backgrounds have made this guacamole and it still has a five star rating?! That's rare. It makes perfect sense when you try it, though, because it's amazing. It has the perfect amount of everything, and then a few random additions like cayenne pepper.

I always adapt his recipe slightly, omitting the cumin, using an entire jalapeno (be sure to completely seed it), and bumping the cilantro up to two tablespoons. If I have an extra lime or a lemon I also squeeze a bit more lemon or lime juice on top before serving. Alton Brown also recommends leaving it out for an hour before serving. While I'm sure this does help the flavor, if you're in a pinch for time I guarantee no one will complain about eating it before an hour has passed.


Go-To Guacamole
Recipe based on Alton Brown's Guacamole

3 Ripe Haas avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1 lime, juiced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 medium red onion, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced

In a large bowl place the scooped avocado pulp and almost all of the lime juice, leaving about one tablespoon for use later in the recipe. Mash together gently with a fork until lime juice is integrated into the avocados. Next, add the salt and cayenne pepper, mash together until mixed. Then, fold in the onions, jalapeno, tomatoes, cilantro, and garlic. Add the rest of the lime juice*. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour and then serve. If you run out of time, go ahead and eat it before the hour. It'll still be delicious!

*A lot of people may know this, but a really great way to juice a lime if you don't have a citrus juicer is to use a fork. Simply press the fork inside the center of a lime half and squeeze while moving the fork from side to side. Easy peasy. 


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