Good guacamole is essential to Mexican cuisine — and it’s always a hit at an outdoor party. The best versions are also the simplest, starring good-quality avocados with a splash of lime juice and salt, plus a few basic add-ins for flavor.
Our version comes from Traci des Jardins, chef at San Francisco’s Jardinière and Mijita Cocina Mexicana. Here, she relies on raw white onion, fresh cilantro and a single spicy chile for a perfect balance of flavors.
In all of her cooking, Traci is partial to a mortar and pestle. “Use them whenever you can!” she says. “Save yourself from the noise and mess of the blender or food processor.” Go the traditional route with tools carved from volcanic rock, called a molcajete, or simply mash avocados in a bowl as she does below.
Traci des Jardins’ Guacamole
1-2 limes, juiced
½ white onion, finely diced
½ bunch chopped cilantro
1 finely minced serrano chile
Salt to taste
Remove the seed from the avocado and peel, place into a bowl and mash, add the other ingredients and mix well. Taste and add additional salt if necessary.