The better the strawberries, the better the guacamole. That's why I make this guacamole only during the few weeks when our local strawberries are in season. Habaneros, while very spicy, are jam-packed with flavor; use the quantity that's right for you. You may want to wear gloves while working with the habanero, to avoid painful experiences when inadvertently touching tender parts of your anatomy.
Guacamole with Strawberries and Habanero
Makes about three cups.
3 ripe medium-large avocados
1/2 medium red onion, chopped into pieces no larger than 1/4 inch (1/3 cup)
1/2 to 1 fresh habanero, stemmed, seeded, deveined and finely chopped
1 small orange
3 tablespoons loosely packed chopped fresh cilantro
2/3 cup (about 4 ounces) chopped ripe strawberries, plus a little extra for garnish
- Cut the avocados in half, running a knife around the pit from top to bottom and back up again. Twist the halves in opposite directions to release the pit from one side of each avocado. Remove the pit, then scoop the flesh from each half into a large bowl. With an old-fashioned potato masher, a large fork or the back of a spoon, coarsely mash the avocado.
- Scoop the onion into a strainer, rinse under cold water, shake off the excess and then add to the avocado, along with the habanero.
- Finely grate the zest (colored part only) from the citrus: you need about 1 1/2 teaspoons grated lime zest and about 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest. Add them to the bowl, then juice both fruits and add 2 tablespoons lime juice and 1 tablespoon orange juice to the bowl.
- Add the chopped cilantro and strawberries, then carefully stir everything together. Taste and season with salt, usually about 1 teaspoon. Cover with plastic wrap pressed directly on the guacamole and refrigerate until you're ready to serve.
- At the last moment, scoop the guacamole into a serving bowl and sprinkle with chopped strawberries.
Ideas for serving: Jicama is probably the best "chip" for this very fresh-tasting guacamole, though thin tortilla chips work well, too. To tell the truth, a bowl of strawberries is always welcome. Encourage your guests to dip them in. Honest. They'll thank you.
Recipe reprinted courtesy of Rick Bayless, from Frontera: Margaritas, Guacamoles, and Snacks, published by W.W. Norton & Company. To purchase this book, go to Amazon.com.
Originally published in the July 2013 issue of Family Circle magazine.