Guacamole, essentially mashed avocados gleefully spiced up, is an incredibly useful sort of a food. It is a great starter with nothing more than strips of warm pitta bread and raw vegetables to dip into it, but it slides easily into the role of sauce or relish and is also very good spooned on to baked potatoes.
|¼||red onion, chopped|
|2||garlic cloves, chopped|
|3 tbsp||roughly chopped fresh coriander, plus a few leaves to garnish|
|1–2||green or red chillies, seeded and finely chopped|
|2–3||ripe avocados, depending on size|
|2||tomatoes, skinned, seeded and finely chopped|
|Juice of ½–1 lime|
|A pinch||of sugar|
|Salt and freshly ground black pepper|
|A sprinkling||of cayenne pepper, to serve|
Mix the onion, garlic, coriander and chillies on a chopping board and chop together very finely (or whizz them together in brief spurts in a food processor, watching that you don’t end up with a purée).
Peel and stone the avocados and mash with a potato masher or fork (but don’t put them in the food processor, as you want to end up with a slightly uneven mush, though it shouldn’t be positively lumpy). Mix the avocados with the chopped flavourings, tomatoes, juice of half the lime, a pinch of sugar and salt and black pepper. Taste and add more lime juice if needed. There should be just enough to take the edge off the richness of the avocado without making it too tart.
Scoop into a bowl, smooth down and cover the surface of the guacamole with clingfilm to keep the air out as much as possible and so delay browning. Just before serving, give it a light stir to reveal the vivid colour of the purée, then scatter with a little extra coriander and a very light dusting of cayenne pepper.