Tag Archives: Avocado

Bacon Guacamole

bacon guacamole

Ah, guacamole. A snack/appetizer from Mexico that will likely never lose its status as beloved, revered even. However, I’ve noticed that guacamole lovers fall into one of two fairly polarizing camps: the Guacamole Purists, and the Guacamole Adventurers.

The Purists want to keep guacamole in its original form. The avocado mashed with citrus juice, chile, onion, garlic, cilantro, maybe tomato, and salt. Lots of salt. The Adventurers are willing to have add-ins in their guacamole. The most common things I’ve seen are mango, shrimp, chipotle, and the like; on the less typical side I’ve seen things as out there as apple and smoked salmon.

Bacon Guacamole

I am firmly in the Purists camp. I have always held, no clung to, the belief that good, made-from-scratch guacamole is perfect as it is and needs no embellishment, and in fact that said embellishments might overall detract from the wonder that is guacamole.

Bacon Guacamole

And then, my parents gave me a Barnes and Noble gift card for Christmas, and I used it to purchase Richard Sandoval’s new cookbook, New Latin Flavors (thank you Mom and Dad!). And what do I see but a recipe for Bacon Guacamole! Well, y’all know how I feel about bacon. And it’s not like avocados and bacon are strangers in the realm outside of guacamole, either.

Bacon Guacamole

So I decided to take a personal day from being such an uptight Purist and give it a shot. I was definitely impressed! The bacon didn’t clash or detract from the guacamole, and it was actually quite tasty to get the contrast of the crunchy, salty bacon with the creamy avocado. While I highly doubt I’ll be chasing after smoked salmon guacamole anytime soon, I thoroughly enjoyed this bacon version, and I would eat it again in a heartbeat! Enjoy!

Bacon Guacamole

Source: adapted from Richard Sandoval’s New Latin Flavors by Richard Sandoval

Ingredients:
¼ small red onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 serrano chile, seeded and minced
1 generous tbs chopped fresh cilantro
Kosher salt, to taste
2 ripe Hass avocados, pitted, peeled and chopped
A few spoonfuls (about 3 tbs) pickled jalapeno juice
1 pickled jalapeno, stemmed and chopped
3-4 slices of bacon, cooked until very crispy and chopped or crumbled
2-3 tbs crumbled Cotija cheese
Tortilla chips, for serving

Directions:
Add the red onion, garlic, serrano and cilantro to your molcajete. Add a nice pinch of kosher salt. Mash the mixture against the side and bottoms of the molcajete, releasing their juices. Add the avocado chunks and spoon the pickled jalapeno juice over the avocado. Use a fork to mash the avocado. Now fold in the pickled jalapeno, bacon, and Cotija, leaving a little bit for garnish. Taste again for seasoning and add more salt or acid as desired. Sprinkle a touch of bacon bits and Cotija on top for garnish. Serve immediately with tortilla chips.

Lobster, Charred Corn, and Avocado Sandwiches

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About one week out of every summer, I feel like the luckiest person on earth. Why? Because my grocery store gets these small, roughly-one-pound live lobsters and puts them on sale for around $6 per pound. Yeah. You read that correctly. It’s crazy. Matt and I can dine on lobsters for less than $15 total.

We never know which week of the summer this blessed event will occur, so you have to be vigilant and alert. And sometimes, like last year, you’ll be on vacation during that week and want to cry about it. But not this year! (Whew…)

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This year, we walked into the grocery store after a long, beautiful day at the beach with a shopping list for burger makings, and that quickly got tossed as we exuberantly exited the grocery store with our $6 lobsters, some garlic, herbs and butter. We had a leisurely, romantic dinner of boiled lobster, drawn garlic-herb butter and chilled Chardonnay.

The next day, I went out and bought two more of those low-price lobsters for this amazing, glorious sandwich. Some fresh sweet corn, ripe avocados, eggy Briochoe rolls, and we were in business.

This is one of the richer summer sandwiches I’ve eaten in my lifetime, but also one of the more delicious. Due to the (usual) price of lobster, I’m guessing it isn’t a sandwich most of us can have every day; I certainly can’t anyway. So once a year, I’ll thoroughly enjoy it and not feel the least bit bad. And you could always sub in jumbo shrimp for the lobster. Enjoy!

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{One Year Ago: Duck Fat Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, Heirloom Tomato Salad with Anchovy Vinaigrette}
{Two Years Ago: DrPepper Can Chicken}

Source: adapted from Barbecue Addiction by Bobby Flay

Ingredients:
2 (1-1 1/4 lb.) live lobsters
1 tbs unsalted butter
1 large ear of corn
1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
1/2 small jalapeno or serrano chile
Kosher salt and black pepper
2 ripe Hass avocados, peeled, pitted and diced
2 tbs sour cream
2 tbs chopped red onion
A handful of cilantro leaves, chopped, plus extra for garnish
Juice of 1/2 a lime
Few dashes of Tabasco sauce
2 Brioche buns, split and toasted

Directions:
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the lobsters and boil for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove with tongs to a shallow bowl or high-sided plate and let cool. When you can handle them, crack the meat out of the claws and tail. Cut the tail meat into chunks. If not continuing the recipe immediately, store in a sealed container in the refrigerator.
Peel the husks and silk off the corn and use a sharp knife to cut the kernels off. Add the butter to a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the corn, garlic clove, and chile and saute just until softened and toasted, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from the heat. Transfer the garlic clove and chile to a cutting board and the corn to a large bowl.
Once cooled a little bit, mince the garlic and chile. Add to the bowl with the corn. Also add to the bowl the avocado, sour cream, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, Tabasco, and salt and pepper to taste. Mash and stir the whole thing together with a fork. You want it combined but still chunky.
Now assemble the sandwich. Dollop a hunk of avocado mixture onto the bottom bun and spread to the edges. Nestle a generous amount of lobster meat, both claw and tail, on top of the avocado. Mound a few dollops of avocado over the lobster, garnish with a few leaves of cilantro, then close the sandwich. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 sandwiches.

Deconstructed Fish Tacos

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It’s time for some Secret Recipe Club!!! [Click here for my last SRC post.] This month I was assigned Mele Cotte, a fantastic blog from Christina (or Chris as she is called by her friends).

Chris is a gorgeous redhead who hails from Boston but resides in Atlanta. She held several different careers in marketing and middle school education before realizing that cooking and baking were her true loves. She is quite accomplished in the food blogging and culinary sphere, as she has attended the Art Institute in Atlanta and does smaller catering gigs. Definitely check out her awesome blog!

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Mele Cotte means Baked Apples in Italian (I did not know that!), and yes, Italian is her heritage. So of course, I had to go and choose something Mexican. Because I just do things like that. These deconstructed fish tacos immediately caught my eye. I am a huge fish taco fan, and I love playing around with the whole deconstructed concept, so I think I was just meant to find this recipe on Chris’ blog.

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I adapted the recipe, mainly because it’s written as four servings and I’m only cooking for two people. And then I made a few smaller changes, just added some chili powder to the fish and topped it with some crispy tortilla strips. After viewing the food on the plate and taking my first bite, I remarked to Matt that you could also probably call these upside-down fish tacos, because fish tacos are based with a tortilla and the cabbage is just the garnish, whereas these are the exact opposite.

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And yet, they taste exactly as advertised. So delicious, light and healthy, full of Mexican flavor. We absolutely loved them and I can’t wait to play around with the concept some more and make them again. Thank you for a fabulous recipe Chris!

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Source: adapted from Mele Cotte

Ingredients:
Juice of 3 limes, divided
1 tsp chili powder
Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
2 grouper fillets, or any white fish
1/2 a green cabbage, cored and finely shredded
1 tbs plus 3 tsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 corn tortillas
Canola oil, for frying
Guacamole
Chunky salsa
Queso fresco or Cotija cheese, crumbled, for garnish

Directions:
In a small baking dish (I used a glass 8×8 glass baker), mix together the juice of 2 limes, chili powder, 1 tbs olive oil, plus salt and pepper to taste. Add the grouper and turn them over a few times so they are fully coated. Set aside but leave out at room temperature while you prep the cabbage and prepare the guacamole, if making it yourself.
Carefully slice the cabbage very thin; using a mandoline works best and quickest. Pile the cabbage into a bowl and squeeze the remaining lime over it. Add the 3 tsp olive oil and toss to combine. Don’t salt it yet. Set aside.
Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Carefully add the fish fillets and cook about 7 minutes total, flipping once, until they are just cooked through. You may need a shorter or longer time depending on your fish’s thickness. When done, remove to a plate and let rest 3-5 minutes. With a fork, flake or chunk the fillets.
Add about an inch of canola oil to a small to medium skillet and heat on high. Cut the tortillas into 1-inch-wide strips, then cut those strips in half crosswise. When the oil is ready, fry the tortilla strips for just a few minutes. You’ll know they are ready when the bubbles start subsiding and their color has turned golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate and lightly sprinkle with kosher salt.
To serve, first season the cabbage with salt and pepper and toss. Then assemble as follows: cabbage spread out on a dinner plate, topped with guacamole, then dot liberally or conservatively with salsa, followed by chunks of fish, and finally tortilla strips and queso fresco. Serve immediately.


Avocado Milkshakes #SundaySupper

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Welcome to another Sunday Supper!! Our theme this week is 5 Ingredients or Less. If you’re a regular reader here, then you have probably surmised by now that this theme is quite difficult for me. I don’t have many recipes fitting that description on my blog, and I don’t really have any of these types in my arsenal of tricks. It’s just not how I tend to cook.

avocados

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So, what to do today? I figured it would be a great excuse to bust out a beverage recipe. Upon perusing the drink section of my Recipe Index, I found more alcoholic beverages than non, and while I’ll likely not pause to reflect on what that might say about me, I did decide to use this excuse to pad the non-alcoholic side.

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Who doesn’t love a good milkshake? Milkshakes are easy and fun to make at home. And my dear husband is an absolute fiend. As in, he doesn’t like me to make them very often because they’re so addictive to him. He’s also absolutely crazy about avocados, so making an avocado milkshake seemed like the right thing to do under the circumstances. If this sounds weird, well, it’s not!

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First of all, a creamier milkshake simply doesn’t exist; and second of all, it doesn’t taste weird at all. It tastes completely natural, like where-have-these-been-all-my-life natural. It’s sweet but still distinctly tastes like avocado, and you’ll be left now knowing that avocados can definitively swing both savory and sweet. So good. Enjoy this one, y’all!

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Oh, and be sure you check out the rest of my Sunday Supper cohorts!

Source: adapted from The Good Stuff Cookbook by Spike Mendelsohn

Ingredients:
2 ripe avocados
Half a 14-oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
1 cup creamy vanilla ice cream or gelato
½ cup whole milk
Whipped cream, for garnish

Directions:
Cut each avocado in half and discard the pit. Scoop out the flesh and put it in your blender. Add the condensed milk, ice cream, and milk. Puree until smooth. Pour into 2 glasses and garnish with a dollop of whipped cream. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 milkshakes.

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Shrimp and Avocado Ceviche

Shrimp and Avocado Ceviche

I have very fond memories of the first time I tried ceviche.  San Pedro, Belize, May 2010.  I was eating lunch with Matt after doing some exploring of the town in a rented golf cart (which was awesome, by the way – both the town and driving a golf cart).  We got lunch in this little seafood shack right on the beach with beautiful views.  Matt was actually the one to order it, but never fear, I stole several bites.

chopped shrimp for ceviche

We both really enjoyed it.  It was fresh, clean, citrusy, and a touch spicy from the habaneros that Belizeans love so much.

Shrimp & Avocado Ceviche

I really didn’t know about ceviche growing up, seeing as we didn’t eat much seafood. BUT, all things considered, I doubt I’d have touched this dish with a ten foot pole even if I had been exposed to it. It’s a Mexican specialty that has easily migrated to other Central American countries and Caribbean islands. Ceviche means that seafood has been “cooked” in citrus juice. It is never exposed to a traditional heat source for cooking it. So up until about my mid-twenties, I would have considered it raw and stayed far, far away.

shrimp ceviche

I’m very glad I have changed my mind, because ceviche is delicious, easy, and healthy! Our waiter in Belize told us that ceviche is usually consumed after a long night of drinking. That hasn’t ever been my experience of it, but I can attest to the sheer pleasure of eating it with an icy cold beer.

Shrimp and Avocado Ceviche

Ceviche has since become a favorite of mine. I love how easy it is to prepare – you just need time to let it sit in the fridge. It’s so refreshing and clean tasting. Try it if you never have before, it’s so delish!

shrimp and avocado ceviche

Recipe note: Don’t chop the veggies until right before they are needed, particularly the avocado, which will oxidize on you.

Source: adapted from Muy Bueno: Three Generations of Authentic Mexican Flavor by Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack, Veronica Gonzalez-Smith and Evangelina Soza

Ingredients:
1 lb. large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined, then chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
Juice of 1 1/2 limes
Juice of 1 lemon
1 plum tomato, seeded and chopped
1 tbs chopped red onion
Half a jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 very small Kirby cucumber, chopped
1 tbs chopped fresh cilantro
Half an avocado, chopped
Olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper
Tortilla chips

Directions:
Spread out the chopped shrimp in a glass baking dish. Pour the lime juice and lemon juice over the shrimp, toss well, and refrigerate for 2 hours, mixing occasionally. The acid from the citrus juice will “cook” the shrimp.
Toss the prepared shrimp and the juices with the remaining ingredients (except for tortilla chips) and refrigerate for at least 1 hour longer. You can prepare this and let it sit overnight.
Serve cold with tortilla chips.