Earlier this week I mentioned a few Tex-Mex joints that are serving up some pretty sub-par guac. Ever ready to jump into the fray, a few Aters chimed in, saying I'd simply gone to the wrong restaurants. But the thing is, there's no excuse for bad guacamole. Ever.
If you want to see, walk to your favorite supermarket and find the section where fresh and green things live. Locate the avocados. Look for dark, almost black wrinkled skin. Pick it up with your hands and ... careful now ... gently press against the fruit with your thumb. It should give slightly. Squeeze with your whole hand. Be ginger. You should feel no air pockets, just a soft wet clay texture beneath taut skin.
With guacamole, ingredient selection is everything. Grab a lime. It's in the section with green things, too. No, not that plastic one. A real lime, or a lemon will do.
Now find a quiet place. Cut the avocado open. If you chose wisely, admire its color, first yellow like sunshine in the center then fading to a dark forest green without any gray or black. Slice it any way you like, as long as you end up with large dices. Squeeze the lemon. Sprinkle some salt. Crystal crunchy Kosher please or maybe something sexy from the sea.
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Now eat. Be a glutton. Devour the product of your simple labor, and do it quickly. Every second that passes renders avocados more oxidized and stale. Want to get nuts? Mash in some cilantro or some chili for heat. The faintest whisper of garlic if you must, but it's really not necessary. This is the essence of guacamole: One of nature's most perfect foods enjoyed simply as it should be.