guacamole n : a dip made of mashed avocado mixed with chopped onions and other seasonings
Of Aztec origin, it was originally valued for its high fat and vitamin content. Guacamole was originally made by mashing the avocado with a molcajete (a type of mortar and pestle) and adding tomatoes and salt. After the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors, guacamole became popular in Spain. Since avocados failed to grow well in Spain guacamole remained an American food.
The name guacamole comes from Mexican Spanish via Nahuatl ahuacamolli, from ahuacatl (="avocado") + molli (="sauce"). In Spanish it is pronounced /ɣʷakaˈmole/; in American English it is pronounced /ˌgwɑkəˈmoʊli/ or sometimes in British English /ˌgwækəˈməʊli/.
IngredientsRipe avocados, tomatoes, and salt are common to most recipes. Lime juice is often added for flavor and to help keep the avocado from browning too soon by slowing the reaction of the enzyme that causes browning. Other common components may include onion, chili pepper, black pepper, garlic, cumin, and cilantro.. Adding dairy, such as sour cream or milk, is a United States variation that changes the flavor of guacamole but does serve as a filler if there are not enough avocados.
Preparation and storageGuacamole is still prepared using a molcajete to mash the ingredients. Modern methods include mashing the avocado with a fork or spoon in a bowl, or using a food processor for a smoother consistency. Guacamole is often eaten with tortilla chips, although it can be spooned onto or into almost any savory Mexican dish. In Texas, California and other areas of the southwest United States it is common to make guacamole as a quick party food or to bring it to a potluck luncheon by mashing ripe avocados with a favourite salsa using a fork. This quickly and easily adds the needed acid and salt.
Guacamole does not store well due to the avocado content, and will turn brown even if stored just overnight. A common misconception is that putting the avocado pits into the guacamole during storage will prevent this browning. This has no basis in fact.De-fact-o.com Once the avocado fruit has been cut and the contents mashed, an enzyme released from inside the cells of the avocado flesh starts causing the pulp to turn brown in the presence of oxygen. This is why the top layer of the guacamole turns brown first. Adding a pit will only stop this process wherever the pit directly impedes the guacamole from coming into contact with oxygen and so is practically useless. Instead, limit the amount of air exposure that the guacamole gets by placing 'clingwrap' directly onto the guacamole mixture, rather than over top of the entire storage container.
Commercial guacamoleThere are many types of pre-made guacamole available in stores. Fresh guacamole is available and is often available refrigerated. The non-fresh guacamole most like fresh is preserved by freezing or sometimes high pressure packaging. Other non-fresh preparations need higher levels of fillers and artificial preservatives to be shelf stable.
One of the world's largest food companies, Kraft Foods, came under fire with consumer complaints and lawsuits regarding Kraft's commercial guacamole. The main issue was that Kraft's guacamole contained less than 2 percent avocado and contains hydrogenated oils and artificial colors to try to approximate the consistency and color of avocados. In response to this, consumer health advocate Mike Adams called it Kraft's "avocado-free guacamole" and said "Avocado should be the main ingredient in guacamole. I recommend that people get avocado dip from places that actually use avocado as the main ingredient".
- California Avocado Commission press release about consumer avocado consumption
- Guacamole site with recipes (from California)
- Guacamole Recipe - from Simply Recipes
- Video tutorial on how to prepare guacamole
- Video recipe of guacamole
- How to Cut and Peel an Avocado
- Guacamole Recipes
- Guacamole Video Recipe
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