Fewer things are more malleable or easy to wow guests with than guacamole. Maybe it has something to do with the brightness of the avocado, or how its subtle flavor creates an excellent base for piling on many a varied flavor. Either way, you know you’re lying if you say you’ve never gone to a party, told yourself you’d just have a taste of the guac, and then ended up coming back for chip-full after chip-full of the culinary crack. We’ve all been there.
When one of my favorite local bars, The Gate, announced that they would be having their first Guaca-Melee, I jumped at the chance to create the perfect flavor palette to compliment a basic guacamole recipe. Why go plain, I thought. This was an opportunity to find that ever-elusive mix of spicy and sweet that would have people not just coming back for seconds, but licking the bowl clean.
And they did! I am proud to announce that my Bangin’ Mango Habanero Guacamole was the winner of yesterday’s Guaca-Melee. I tasted many other delicious guacamoles, including a super refreshing one dubbed the Cucado, and it could not have been a more worthy competition. Here’s hoping The Gate puts on another event next year and we all meet again to duke it out, avocado-style.
Mango Habanero Guacamole
Adapted from the Food Network
Serves 4-8 (though I could easily eat this all myself)
3 ripe avocados
Juice of 3 limes
2 tablespoons of diced red onion
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 habanero, finely diced (Remove the seeds if you don’t want the guac to be super hot!)
1/4 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 mango, peeled and diced
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, minced
salt and pepper, to taste
Scoop the avocado into a bowl, add the lime juice, and mash. Add all remaining ingredients other than the salt and pepper, and stir to combine. Salt and pepper to taste.
Voila! You are ready to embark on a bangin’ time! And a huge thanks to The Gate, all my friends and family that came out for the event, and everyone that tasted and voted yesterday–I had a bangin’ time thanks to y’all!