Wednesday, March 7, 2007

The Sun's So Hot I Forgot To Go Home

For those especially keen music fans, you already know that I just returned from Mexico. For those of you who are not familiar with the musical stylings of the great James Taylor, the title refers to a line in his song, "Mexico" and that is exactly how I feel right now.

I just returned from a brief vacation in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and coming home yesterday to the dreary coldness of Chicago has not been energizing to say the least. I am already missing the hot, almost scorching sun, the burning sand under my feet and the salty ocean splashing in my face. But most of all, I miss the guacamole. I am a huge fan of the avocado and its presence in basically anything: sushi, soup, sandwiches - you name it! And because of my fondness for the creamy green stuff, I have also had my share of guacamole in many different forms. Some people lay on the onion, some throw in tomatoes and make it more salsa-like, while others whip it up so it's more of a liquid.

But the guac that I consumed for the last 5 days was nothing short of heavenly. The perfect combination of seasonings and texture making it creamy enough to recognize the essential ripeness of the avocados while still leaving delicious chunks big enough to bite into. A large bowl of this fantastic-ness greeted me each afternoon as I loaded up a plate with (homemade) tortilla chips and guac. A finer lunch there never was.

Sure, it's not the most nutritious of diets, but hey, I was on vacation.

Here's a great guacamole recipe that uses Tabasco for a bit of a kick! Don't forget the cilantro - it's key to the unique flavor.

Fresh Guacamole


7 ripe medium avocados, seeded and peeled
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tomato, diced
1/2 lb Monterey Jack cheese, grated
2 green chilies, diced
1/2 C. fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 C. fresh lime juice
Dash of Tabasco sauce (optional)


In a large mixing bowl, coarsely mash avocados, leaving some chunks. Add remaining ingredients and mix to blend.

Note: To store Guacamole, place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the guacamole and refrigerate.

Yield: 6 Servings

Also try Roasted Onion Guacamole, Fat Free Guacamole or Easy Guacamole.