The Beginning of the Affair

The Beginning of the Affair

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

The Avocado

I usually don't buy avocados mainly because they're rarely ripe enough and usually too expensive--at least two or three dollars for just one. Today I was at Whole Foods and found a very inconspicuous pile of avocados in their prime. You know that deep dark green that sort of looks like it was freshly saturated with blood? To add to that they were each just two cents shy of two dollars--this is good for Whole Foods. The first one I grabbed was just right with its tenderness--this rarely ever happens when I shop for food. Everyone I know would readily testify to the humorless fact that I could spend at least five minutes of my life searching for the best lemon in a pile of about 300. You may not want to come to the grocery store with me when I have to buy a dozen eggs.

I had a sense of urgency about this avocado as if it were the culinary grenade that would explode into the most delicious guacamole I would ever have...and it was.

Its flesh was pristine. I almost wanted to have it the way I have high quality sushi with its inherent depth of flavor unencumbered by condiments, but today I felt that a simple preparation of the avocado with a little acidity and elementary spicing would yeild no regrets.

One perfect avocado...hacked at lovingly

Actually, you may want to approach it like one would spooning into ice cream: gently folding the scoops over each other halving their size over and over. This should take no longer than a minute. Otherwise overprocessing it makes it too thick and creamy and no matter how much acidity you add it will feel like a blob of fat in your mouth. I've made this mistake before.

One garlic clove minced
One tablespoon fresh fresh lemon juice
One and a half teaspoons fresh fresh lime juice
One to one and a half teaspoons fine sea salt or coarse kosher salt
Half teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Keep in mind that I approximated the measurements because I always feel it out. You should adjust the proportions according to your taste.

I want you to try this and tell me about your experience. Forget the cilantro; the only thing green should be the avocado. Forget the onions and tomatoes too. When you have real and fresh fresh food the simpler the preparation the better.

I had it with some organic blue corn chips if I wasn't just spooning it into my mouth and the perfect beer is Presidente. It's a great Dominican Pilsner. If you haven't tried it, have it with your guacamole. You'll love it!


Michael said...

dropout/postdinner? i don't get it, where am i? who am i?

Michael said...

More comments you say, how bout more blog entries? Am I to subsist entirely on guac and beer? I would die!! Happy!!

Noelle Ashley said...

Thanks, Alia! It's enough to make you hungry and want a vacation. Let's link blogs. You do food - I do travel.

Jed said...

I found this site advertised on my whiteboard... Delicious-looking food, but I've got to disagree with you about the lemon juice, the cilantro, and the tomato.
Maybe less salt, too. But we can fight about it some other day. Thanks again for coming!

aliapia said...

Yes! I like differences of opinion. Although with respect to the avocado I would have to stand behind my theme of uber-simplicity. Funny thing is...I never oversalt. In fact I may undersalt. Perhaps the one and a half teaspoons of salt is an overestimation. So is the pepper. Let's say three quarters of a teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste. I'll use measuring spoons next time!

Now if you desire a more elaborate guacamole of course you can add tomato, onion and cilantro. I'd recommend quartered grape tomatoes, finely chopped (not quite minced) red onion, and lots of minced cilantro because--like garlic--I think you can never have too much of it.

The lemon is important because it's so good at maintaining the freshness of the avocado and the integrity of its color. The lime is just as important for its floral sweetness. Add to taste, but don't overdo it. Too much acid can overpower the avocado's subtle buttery and fruity flavors.

aliapia said...

I forgot the serrano chile! So...

I would say one whole chile for every two avocados, minced with seeds and all. Make it hot! This would render the black pepper superfluous and really inappropriate.

Great. This is a whole new post. Anyone care to join me in coming up with the perfect guacamole recipe? Hmmm???

Michael said...

How bout some dick? Avocados need love too.