The keys to making exceptional guacamole, according to a Mexican golf-club chef
Welcome to Clubhouse Eats, where we celebrate the game’s most delectable food and drink. Hope you brought your appetites.
There are certain foods that, while popular, are generally misunderstood — not in terms of what they are, but rather for how good they can be. Guacamole is a perfect example. More often than not, the guacamole that you’ll come across out in the world is pretty average, but that’s not a slight. Even a subpar batch of guacamole has its redeeming qualities. A sublime example, on the other hand, will change the way you think about the dish.
At The Beach Club restaurant at Costa Palmas, Gonzo Cerda, the resort’s executive chef (as well as the property’s food and beverage director), creates several examples that all showcase the beauty of the Mexican staple. To make an equally impressive guacamole at home, Cerda says it all starts with the right avocados — Hass, in particular. “This type has the firmness, the necessary creaminess, and the essential oil to make a good guacamole,” he explains.
Where you could easily go wrong is selecting the appropriate ripeness. Surprisingly, Chef Cerda asserts that choosing very ripe avocados is a mistake. “On the contrary,” he says, “it is better when the avocado is still a bit firm.”
Don’t be timid with how much lime juice or salt you add, either. “There is no need to be afraid when it comes to giving guacamole flavor,” Chef Cerda says. “Quite the opposite. A good guacamole must have a great personality.”
And while using a mortar and pestle is the traditional way of crafting guacamole, it’s far from a necessary piece of equipment. The ancient tool really only affects a guacamole’s texture, creating a more rustic version of the dish, which is why Cerda actually recommends using a hand whisk. It’s a faster and more efficient method, he says. “The important thing,” the chef adds, “is not to use a food processor. This will only compromise the quality of the guacamole.”
If you’re now feeling inspired to create an exceptional guacamole of your own, we’ve included Chef Cerda’s sweet pea and edamame guacamole recipe below:
COSTA PALMAS’ SWEET PEA & EDAMAME GUACAMOLE
½ cup sweet peas, steamed
½ cup edamame, steamed
½ cup sweet corn, steamed
1 tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
1 tsp Serrano chili, finely chopped
½ tbsp fresh basil, chopped
½ tbsp garlic oil
1 tbsp lime juice
Salt and pepper, to taste
In a blender, process the edamame and sweet peas until soft and creamy. Add mint, basil, olive oil, and lime juice and process again until all ingredients are well combined.
Transfer to a large bowl, then add the avocado and mash/whisk until a puree is formed. Fold in the rest of the ingredients, then season to taste with salt and pepper.