If I had to choose my “Top 5 Foods I Couldn’t Live Without,” avocados would definitely be on that list. While I had enjoyed sides of guacamole to go with Mexican food for a long time, theobsession began one summer day in college.
My roommates and I lived in a rental house in Ann Arbor, MI that was was within walking/biking distance to The Produce Station, one of the best produce markets around. On a whim, I bought a few avocados, a jalapeño, a tomato, and some cilantro one day, and toted it back home on my bike. I mashed it into some guacamole, and as my roommates slowly trickled in from summer jobs and classes, they all joined me in the kitchen and began to eat it. Before I knew it, it was gone, and they requested that I immediately make it again. Really – they wanted me to ride my bike back to The Produce Station, get more stuff, and make it for them again. That day. Well, I waited until the next day, and did just that. And then the day after as well. It got to a point where as soon as somebody walked in the door, they asked “when is that guacamole gonna be ready?”
I’m still obsessed with avocados, especially in the warmer months. It does get a little bit ridiculous – the other day, I was out to dinner with family. I was going to order a grilled chicken sandwich with avocado on it for dinner. But, because we had been working in the yard all day, I was straight-up famished. So I said “hey guys, you want to order some chips and guacamole as an appetizer?” Yes, double avocado. My idea of a dream meal.
This Cinco de Mayo, I’m trying my hand at mashing guacamole ingredients into some rice. I used white rice here, but it would work equally as well with brown rice, quinoa, Israeli couscous, barley, or any other type of grain you would like to use. The instructions are three short sentences – it couldn’t be any simpler. It is also easily doubled or tripled for a large batch to take to a party. If you need another fun dish to take, try some Chicken and Green Chile Taquitos with Coriander-Sour Cream Sauce (it’s a mouthful, but easier than it sounds).
I originally intended this guacamole rice to be a warm dish. But, after I made it and then spent a half hour photographing it, by the time I tasted it, it was cold. And it was delicious! So, I served it as a cold rice salad-type dish that night for dinner alongside some turkey and black bean enchiladas. And yes, I had an extra avocado, so I sliced that up and put it on top of the enchiladas. Dream meal.
- 1 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
- Juice of 1-1/2 limes
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups cooked white or brown rice, quinoa, barley or couscous
- 1 garlic clove, crushed with press, or minced and ground into a paste
- 1 Roma tomato, diced
- 1/2 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced (I only add some of the seeds to the dish. Do as you please.)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup diced red onion
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- In a medium bowl, mash together avocado, lime juice and salt. Add remaining ingredients, toss to combine well. Serve warm or cold.