With the advent of The Vegetarians and at the advice of a wise friend, I decided that guacamole would be on the cocktail hour menu. Both of these recipes were transcribed by L. A. Taco, so for ease of FYCE-ing I’m copying and pasting from them, with a few remarks from me.
Since we are still pretty much shut-ins my sole taste-tester was the much put upon Better Half. “You make guacamole all the time. Why do you need a recipe? If you sleepwalked I’d wake up to bowls of it every morning.” I told him what I was doing and his eyes lit up. He is a huge fan of cheesy, over-the-top, vintage horror movies.
I am sad to say that the results were…here’s where the ominous orchestral music starts playing, louder and louder, and then brass blasts out “da-da-da-DUMMMM” as the monster is revealed.
First up, let’s try:
Guacamole Boris Karloff
This appeared in a newspaper or was syndicated in newspapers at some point and images of a clipping of it is readily available online.
1 medium tomato, finely chopped
1 small onion, minced
1 tbsp. chopped canned green chiles
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp sherry
Dash cayenne (optional) [I used it]
Peel and mash avocados. Add onion, tomato and chiles, then stir in lemon juice, sherry and seasonings to taste, blending well. Serve as a dip for tortilla pieces or corn chips or as a spread. Makes 10 to 12 appetizer servings.
Yep. It wasn’t bad but there was something not quite right about it.
Well, how about:
Vincent Price’s Guacamole (Avocado Spread)
This is among the many treasures to be found in Vincent and his wife Mary’s 1965 “A Treasury of Great Recipes.” They were big fans of Mexico and traveled there often. The bolding is mine.
Makes 2 cups
Elaborate canapés have been the ruination of more dinner parties than bad cooks in the kitchen ever have. We’re against pre-stuffing our guests, and prefer to serve cocktails with a simple dip and crackers that are crisp but without too strong a taste of their own– English biscuits or plain matzoth are perfect. A strongly flavored guacamole, which we learned about in Mexico, goes well with our philosophy, our crackers, and above all with our Mexican den where we gather for a pre-dinner drink.
3 TBSP fresh lemon juice
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 clove of garlic, minced
1 green chile, finely chopped
1 medium tomato, chopped (best if peeled and seeded, but it’s not mandatory)
3 TBSP low-fat mayonnaise [it was 1965]
1/8th tsp ground coriander
salt to taste
1 TBSP Worcester Sauce (optional) [I had some around, so yes]
dash of cayenne pepper (optional) [ditto]
- Peel and seed: 2 large avocados. Save the seeds. Mash avocados with a fork.
2. Add the other ingredients and mix together.
3. Leave the avocado seeds in mixture until ready to serve, and they will prevent discoloration. If you like a very smooth guacamole, remove the seeds and put mixture into blender container and blend on high speed for about 8 seconds before you are ready to serve it.
Serve in a small bowl – Mexican if you have one – with crackers or corn crisps or raw vegetables.
So what are we to make of these two recipes? They might seem a little strange (guacamole on matzoh?) to a 21st-century palate but we must put these in context and plus, it’s BORIS KARLOFF AND VINCENT PRICE.
I would give Karloff’s a 4/10 and Price’s a 6/10, maybe even a 7, but again, they’re both perfectly edible.
Since guacamole is such a personal thing, and I think it’s already been covered in FYCE, I won’t tell you what I make. Yes I will. This:
Epicurious is Epicurious and Rosa Mexicana is one of the oldest and finest (perhaps not the best) Mexican restaurants in New York, so I trust them. I like its simplicity and although a little bland no one I know who likes guacamole has ever complained about it.