There’s been considerable pushback (read: open revolt) at this house for a month of vegan recipes, so I figured one workaround in continuing to test the book without testing my family’s patience would be to make food that I know they already like.
However, what I didn’t count on was making Bosh! guacamole. Stupidly, I figured all guacamole recipes are more or less the same, with some minor tweaks here or there. I rarely use a recipe anymore, given that guacamole is so simple I have it memorised.
For the record, my don’t-bother-to-look-it-up guacamole recipe is: Mash up two avocados, Chop up 1/2 a red onion very finely; Deseed and chop up a tomato; Add maldon sea salt; For heat, either add a few dashes of Tabasco sauce or half a chilli (depending on what’s to hand); Throw in some chopped coriander (if there’s some lurking in the frig); Mix all together; Add enough lime juice so it’s the consistency you want. Eat immediately. Remember to share.
The Bosh Bros. recipe is not a million miles away from this one until you get to the part that says: add one tablespoon of olive oil. Yes, you read that right: OLIVE OIL IN GUACAMOLE.
Why, Bosh Bros, WHY? HOW CAN YOU POSSIBLY RUIN GUACAMOLE? A LEGIT VEGAN RECIPE THAT DOESN’T NEED TWEAKING??? (Apologies for the shouting, but I am irate.)
Needless to say, the guacamole was disgusting. It turns out there’s a reason that no guacamole recipe I ever read added olive oil: because it doesn’t work. Look at the picture above. Have you studied it? Does that look like any guacamole you’ve ever had? Or any guacamole you’d want to eat? No and No.
This recipe did little to convince my family that veganism was something worth doing. I did try to point out to them that guacamole is vegan already, to which they retorted that maybe there’s something wrong with this cookbook. They may have a point.
Back to the Bosh drawing board.
I have to say that the boys were thrilled to see the triumphant return of quesadillas to our dinner table.
We used to have quesadillas all the time. Mostly on nights when we had half an hour between having to be at one place and then needing to go to another. Days of shuttling between swimming lessons/boy scouts/karate/climbing/clubs: I do not miss you.
In any case, the standard quesadillas I used to make all the time only had grated cheddar cheese in them. The boys were small, after all, and not the adventurous eaters we know and love today. In this version, you add chorizo too. You take two uncooked chorizo sausages and fry them up before adding them to the quesadillas. I also took them out of the casings, which make them easier to crumble over the top.
We all loved this new addition of chorizo, and asked that I do it this way again the next time I make quesadillas. (Had I followed the recipe to the letter, it would have also had pickled jalapeno, but I knew the boys would not be keen, so I left it out.)
To make the dinner slightly more fancy, I made some guacamole to go with it. This was good news for me, because the boys weren’t interested in having any, and as I’m on a bit of an avocado kick at the moment [read: can’t get enough of it], that made me happy.
I more or less followed the “Street Food”guacamole recipe. The adjustments I made included only using one avocado, since I knew I was going to be the only one eating it, and I also used hot sauce (this one: delicious) instead of chopped chillis. This top tip came via Mary McCarthy when I made her guacamole recipe in Food. It’s so much easier to just add a few drops of hot sauce rather than chop up a chilli. Thanks, Mary.
This was a winner. We definitely will be making quesadillas this way again.
If you would like to try Mary’s version yourself, the recipe can be found here in Google Books.
Oh, guacamole. How I love you.
When we were newlyweds, I thought that making guacamole was the height of culinary talent. I made it pretty frequently too. But sadly, guacamole fell off our culinary radar. These days guacamole is not part of our regular rotation of meals, which I think is a shame. (I did make it during the Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals month, but the post doesn’t even mention the guacamole. I think this was down to the fact that the dessert was so epically bad.)
I was inspired to make Mary McCartney’s guacamole only because I found some perfectly ripe avocados reduced at the local store. Any veteran guacamole maker will tell you that ripe avocados are the only way you will end up with a successful guacamole. It doesn’t work with avocados that aren’t ripe yet, and therefore are impossible to mash to the right consistency.
So how did Mary McCartney’s recipe compare? At first, I thought she reinvented the wheel, for telling us to use Tobasco sauce rather than chopping up a chilli to give the guacamole a kick. But then I looked up my old standby guacamole recipe in “The New Basics Cookbook” and they said to do the same thing. Like I said, it’s been a long time since I made it for myself.
Regardless, it was a good solid recipe and it did the job. I’m not sure you can actually be novel when it comes to guacamole. But it sure is a fine way to perk up a summer night.
Apologies that this post isn’t in the usual format. But we spent all of the dinner talking about Team GB’s gold medal haul and Team USA’s position on top of the leader board in the Olympics, and not about the food. Once the Olympic hoopla is over, I’m sure normal service will resume.
Anna: He’s done a nice little trick with these, marinating the beef in paprika and harissa before grilling gives it a lovely smokey flavour. Close your eyes and it could be coming off of one of those sizzling grills in a Mexican restaurant. Pass me a margarita.
Peter: Could you use any cut of beef for this dish?
Anna: He suggests rump but I suppose any sort of steak would be fine. Did you like the guacamole?
Anna: It was different from my usual, unadulterated version. This had garlic and shallots and chilli in it.
Peter: The problem with this country is getting good avocados.
Anna: Tell me about it. I enjoyed this, but it’s a bit of work getting all the different bits together and I don’t know if I loved it enough to do it again.
Peter: I liked it. But I didn’t have to cook it.
Time Taken: 40′ 11″
If you’d like to see if you can beat my time, a copy of the recipe is on the Daily Mail site. Click here.
Maureen: Tonight’s menu is chosen by Andrew! What do you think?
Andrew: It’s good.
Maureen: What do you like about it?
Andrew: The fact that it’s basic.
Maureen: It’s not that basic. It took 40 minutes.
Tim: Look at that. The cucumbers, which required no cooking at all, were the first to go.
Continue reading ““Tomato Soup, Chunky Croutons, Crunchy Veg & Guacamole, Sticky Prune Sponge Puddings” from “Jamie’s 30-Minute Meals””