Monday, February 15, 2010

Holy Guacamole!!

This week was my first recipe with Bobby Flay!!! I was SUPER excited to start on this chapter because Bobby is one of my favorite chefs on Food Network. Even though he is from New York, he still has a Southwest flair to his cooking and usually packs a punch when it comes to his recipes. This is my favorite part, because if you know me, you can not make it TOO hot...that just doesn't exist in my book!

I was looking for an excuse to make this Charred Corn Guacamole recipe, because it isn't a main course and I wanted to be able to make it to take some where for an appetizer instead of having people over like we normally do. So it was perfect when our good friend Lori and Nathan invited us over for a game night at their house! It fell on the weekend I was suppose to make this recipe and there would be about 10-15 people there!! Since I wasn't sure how much the recipe would make, considering portion size in Texas is usually double everywhere else, I went ahead and doubled the recipe to be safe. Better to have too much than too little, right?

Luckily all the ingredients were recognizable and super easy to find at Kroger. Even the avacadoes were good and ripe, for being out of season (FYI-avacado season is in the spring). The first thing I did was get all of my ingredients prepped and prepared when I got home. I started first with finely chopping up my serrano chile. If you aren't familiar with serrano chiles, just think of it this way...compared to a jalapeno, a serrano chile (if it were a man) could lift a VW van and a jalapeno can lift a vespa! So, needless to say you are going to have more heat with a serrano than a jalapeno! Serrano peppers are like a slender jalapeno and as it ages it turns from green to red to yellow. You might have seen these variations at your grocery store! Anyway, I used the green (young) serrano's and it was perfect for a large crowd. It isn't "Brittany" hot, but it still packs a punch and gives the dish some flavor! If you are sensitive to heat and still want the flavor then remove the seeds and that will eliminate some of the heat of the pepper. After chopping and setting aside my serrano chile, I went ahead and finely diced my red onion and cilantro leaves and also set those aside in my bowl.

Next it was on to juicing my lime. Unfortunately, the limes weren't as impressive as the rest of the produce. For some reason, I just HAD to get the hard as a rock lime with no juice!! BUT since I am a Food Network freak, I learned a little trick that some may or may not know about! If you come across a hard lime, just pop it in the microwave for about 15 seconds, roll it on the counter and then cut, WAHLAH...a practically dried up lime becomes this fresh and revived juicy fruit (not the gum)! Also, it helps to have one of those fancy juicer dishes for those of us who don't have a strong grip! Or you can always rely on the strong hands of your husband (or Dad, Brother, someone with man hands that's around) like I do most of the time! Once everything was chopped, squeezed and placed in my bowl it was time to move on to the main star of this dish, the CORN!! First, I must tell everyone I have only grilled one other time in my life and Adam was by my side the entire time. Not sure what it is, but I have always been intimidated by the grill. I guess I just always viewed it as a man's cooking tool and never really wanted to interfere with that. Plus there are many times when I see men missing hair on their face, hands, etc...and there is always a funny grill story to go along with it! I tend to like my eyebrows and didn't want to have to start drawing them on, so I usually leave the grilling to Adam!

Moving along...I had to start by removing just the outer husks from the corn. The husks are the "leafy" parts of the corn and tear away fairly easy. Once the outer husks were removed from my ears of corn, I loosened up the silks without removing them completely (the silks are the stringy, silky looking parts attached to the kernels). I have to admit that I still had Adam light the grill because we are in desperate need of a new grill (it's on the list, don't worry) and he had to do it by hand. As stated above, I wanted to keep my eyebrows so I let him take care of that part! Other than that, he left me to do everything else all by myself (after a quick lesson on all the parts of the grill). I dunked my corn in a bowl of water and placed them all directly on the grill. The recipe calls to leave the corn on the grill about 15min, rotating occasionally. It was a bit windy and cold the day I was making this that I left mine on about 30min, since everytime I would open the grill to rotate the corn all my heat would go out. So don't always go by time on a recipe...go according to your cooking instruments and pay attention to the elements! If it would have been summer time with a small breeze, 15min would have done just fine! Once you see the kernels showing through the husk and you have a nice char on your corn, they are done!!

I brought my corn inside and let it cool a little before I handled it. It isn't pleasant to try and cut corn while it is still hot unless you have no nerves in your hand! Once it was cooled, I carefully removed the remaining husks and silk from the cobs and cut the kernels off using a sharp knife. Make sure you have a sharp knife, otherwise your kernels will look butchered and you'll make a HUGE mess! Once the corn was added in with the rest of my ingredients in my bowl, I went ahead and started on my avacadoes. I didn't cut my avacadoes up with the rest of my ingredients at the beginning because I didn't want them turning brown. Avacadoes are super sensitive and if you cut and mess with them too much they can turn brown and look unappealing really quickly! So, I saved these for last, for a reason! I cut my avacadoes into chunks by first slicing each one in half and CAREFULLY removing the pit. I say carefully since there have been many occasions where I have seen many people, myself included, severely cut themselves while trying to remove those stubborn pits. Once you get the pit removed, take a tablespoon and slide it around the edges and remove the avacado from its skin. Place it flat side down on a cutting board. Then slice it length wise (or hot dog style as I say) and then width wise (or hamburger style) to form the perfect size chunks.

Once everything was in the bowl, I added the final touches of vegetable oil and salt and pepper (to taste). Then I tossed it gently, cleaned up my edges around the bowl and we were off to game night!! Adam and I agreed that it was more like a pico de gallo guacamole instead of the traditional mashed guacamole, we Texans are used to. All-in-all I think my guacamole was a success and everyone enjoyed it (or at least I hope they weren't lying)! A huge thanks to Nathan and Lori for having us over for game night, it was a ton of fun (especially since we won the Newlywed Game, YEA!!).

Recipe Rating: Easy, just chop, grill and pour everything into a big bowl!
Good Leftover: Yes and No, if you scrape off the top to get rid of the brown avacadoes you can probably eat it the next day!
Tip: Instead of eating this like a dip, you can also use it as a fun topper for fajitas, tacos, burritos, chicken, etc...
Stay tuned in 2 weeks-Grilled Potato Salad with Watercress, Green Onions and Blue Cheese Vinaigrette

You can find the Charred Corn Guacamole recipe here:


  1. Since guacamole isn't my thing...can you just grill some more corn on the cob for me? They looked so freaking delicious!!!

  2. BAH hahahaha we have the same fear of grills, although mine is w/ charcoal grills, I'm affraid that huge flame will burn me or set me on fire when putting the grate back on it. So I leave the charcoal grilling to Jason.

    Also, FYI, for juicing, go get a citrius press (if we have them here in our BX it'll be a piece of CAKE to fine one where you are). They're AMAZING! You cut the lemon/lime in half, put one half in the press, and just squeeze (and not much elbow grease is required to squeeze it) and bam, you have the juice you need. I love mine and will never part from it.

    Love you sis!