02.04.2016

Guacamole Showdown

BY: Martie Duncan, InSinkErator® Subject Matter Expert

Get Game Day Ready With These Tips

Game day gatherings would not be the same without guacamole; when the Big Game rolls around, Americans will devour more than 8,000,000 pounds of guac!

Guacamole is one of those recipes that is perfect for just about any get-together because it is easy to make; avocados are readily available year ‘round; you can make it on the fly as your guests watch (it is always fun when restaurants make guacamole table-side), and best of all, everyone loves it.

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Your InSinkerator® makes meal prep even easier because it can grind items like tomato tops and onion hearts. (And it can even grind avocado pits!)

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Of course, I have my own favorite guacamole recipe but my Food Network Star mentor Alton Brown owns the top spot when you Google the word “guacamole”. Alton’s recipe calls for Haas avocados, which are the ones with the dark green bumpy exterior. They turn almost purplish-black when ripe. You can find Haas avocados at most grocery stores.

All guacamole recipes begin with ripe avocados; therefore, may require some advance planning.

Buy your avocados in advance and store them in a brown paper bag for 2-5 days before you use them.

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Adding apples or kiwi to the bag will actually speed up the
process.

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Since avocados release a natural ethylene gas, storing them in a bag will promote the ripening process.

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If you are making the guacamole that day, you will need
to purchase ripe avocados, which are that dark purple-black color; are somewhat firm, but the skin yields to gentle pressure. Avoid over soft or blemished fruit. Refrigerate already ripe avocados – this will prolong their life by a day or two.

If you cannot find ripe avocados, there is a hack you can use to quickly soften a hard avocado. (Note: The flavor and the consistency of a softened avocado will not be the same as a ripe avocado.) To quickly soften a hard avocado, wrap it tightly in foil (trapping the ethylene gas) and place in a 200° Fahrenheit oven for 30 minutes. Check the avocado like you would a baked potato; prick the surface with a knife or fork to check it, and return it to the oven if it hasn’t softened sufficiently. Depending on the size of the avocado, this may take up to 45 minutes. Allow it to cool completely before cutting.

For your game day gathering or anytime you need a no-fail, fast, party favorite, try one of these guacamole recipes!

PERFECT PARTY GUACAMOLE
Martie Duncan

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4 large ripe Haas avocados, peeled, seed removed, and cubed
2 Limes, juiced
½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp ground black pepper
½ tsp ground cumin
Pinch cayenne pepper
Pinch granulated sugar
4 oz Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened to room temperature*
2 medium Roma tomatoes, diced fine
1 medium white onion, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ of a small Serrano pepper, seeded and minced (a Jalapeno pepper can be
substituted)
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped (optional)

*For a healthier option, you may omit the cream cheese if you prefer.

Toss the avocado with the lime juice. Drain the lime juice, reserving 2 tablespoons. In a large bowl, add 1 avocado, the cream cheese and the salt, pepper, cumin, sugar, and cayenne plus 1 tablespoon of the reserved lime juice and blend together so the cream cheese is not visible. Add the remaining avocado and 1 more tablespoon of the lime juice and coarsely mash with a fork or potato masher. Add the remaining ingredients and stir gently to combine.

Serve immediately with warm tortilla chips or toasted pita bread wedges.

SHRIMP AND AVOCADO GUACAMOLE
Martie Duncan

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½ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup ketchup
¼ cup sour cream
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 ½ tsp salt, divided
1 ¼ tsp ground black pepper, divided
¼ tsp ground cumin
2 tbsp lemon juice, divided
5 ripe Haas avocados, peeled, seed removed, and diced
1 lb large raw (26-30 count) Gulf shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
2 scallions, reserving 1 teaspoon green tops, minced
Preheat oven to 400° Fahrenheit.

In a large bowl, whisk the mayo, ketchup, sour cream, Worcestershire sauce, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, cumin, and ½ tablespoon lemon juice together. Set aside. (Note: I like to make this earlier in the day to allow the flavors to fully marry.)

In another bowl, toss the diced avocado with the remaining lemon juice. Set aside.

Put the shrimp on a sheet pan. Toss with the olive oil and 2 teaspoons salt plus 1 teaspoon pepper. Roast for 3-4 minutes per side or until they just turn pink and begin to curl. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

To assemble: Chop the shrimp into bite-sized pieces and add to the bowl with the sauce. Drain the lemon juice from the avocado and use a fork to mash slightly. Add to the sauce. Add the tomato and scallion. Toss and chill until serving time. Check seasoning. Add salt or pepper as required.

To serve: garnish with 1 teaspoon green scallion tops. Serve with tortilla chips, toasted pita chips, or crackers.

GUACAMOLE
Alton Brown

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3 Haas avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1 lime, juiced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 medium onion, diced
1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced

In a large bowl place the scooped avocado pulp and lime juice, toss to coat. Drain, and reserve the lime juice, after all of the avocados have been coated. Using a potato masher add the salt, cumin, and cayenne and mash. Then, fold in the onions, jalapeno, tomatoes, cilantro, and garlic. Add 1 tablespoon of the reserved lime juice. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour and then serve.