What’s green, creamy and the perfect companion to anything dipable? Right, guacamole! That ‘native’ Mexican dip has gained popularity all around the globe and has become a stable on many dining tables. But the history of our favorite dip actually goes way back in time of Mexican culture. Read on to find out more about the story and deriving of guacamole and how to make it yourself!
Mexico – Home of the Avocado
Avocados for sure can look back to one hell of a long history in their home country, Mexico. They originate from the persea tree, a tree that is native to the plateaus of Mexico. This delicious fruit is assumed to having been cultivated for centuries or even thousands of years. Probably the first people who realized about the benefits of harvesting and consuming avocados lived around more than 10,000 years in modern Mexico. There is evidence that even back then, the indigenous tribes had already started to cultivate the avocado seed. And also, used it in a gastronomical manner. So it is quite safe to say, the avocado has been a red thread in Mexico’s history.
One fun fact about the naming of Avocado: Avocado derives from the Spanish word aguacate, which on the other hand comes from the Aztec word ahuacatl. This Aztec word also means testicle. Why avocados and the private parts of men share a word in the Aztect language is not yet fully resolved. One reason could be the way, avocados hang from the tree. It could also be linked to the aphrodisiac effect the Aztecs attributed to avocados.
Who Made The First Guacamole Ever?
Let’s have one more dip into etymology: The term guacamole can also be traced back to an Aztec word, which is ahuacamolli. So it is quite probable, that even already the people habituating nowadays Mexico in the 14th century, did already know how to prepare themselves a solid version of guacamole or a guacamole like dish.
Even before nutritional scores and modern science, the avocado and guacamole were considered extremely healthy foods. Its number one health benefits among the Aztec was the already mentioned aphrodisiac effect.
When the Spanish arrived in Mexico, they of course also discovered the beautiful green fruit. They started exporting it and well, here we are, loving avocados in all of its forms. Some people also call avocados Mexico’s green gold. Although nowadays, avocados are also cultivated in other region like the Indonesian islands, California or the south of Spain, Mexico kept being the number one avocado exporter.
Health benefits of Avocados
Avocados have been popular for its health benefits for several centuries. The Aztecs loved the fruit among other benefits for the alleged aphrodisiac effect. Actually, they were even quite right. Avocados contain an ideal mix of unsaturated fats, vitamin E and B6. This mix is known to have a positive influence on the potency and hormone health of women. Also, men lacking vitamin E can result in a loss of libido, meaning this true vitamin E bomb might help to get your game back up, guys!
Besides its aphrodisiac effect, you can definitely call the avocado a superfood, for it is incredibly nutritious. Adding to the above named fats and vitamins, it also contains vitamin K, folate, potassium and vitamin B5. These nutrients have a positive effect on your heart health, your cholesterol your eyes and may prevent cancer and arthritis.
The Environmental Footprint of Avocados
However, unfortunately, everything beautiful also has its dark side. This also applies to our favorite and super healthy green fruit, the avocado.
First, they have become something of a monoculture in some places. Monocultures disturb the local ecosystems and draw the nutrients from the soil, thus degrading it year after year. Also, often lots of pesticides, that affect other local growing plants and animals, but especially the people working on the plantation, are used to harvest avocados.
Additionally, they use a ton of water. This fact hits even harder concerning that they mainly grow in regions that are prone to drought. And last but not least, let’s not forget about the transport cost of avocados, especially to regions overseas like Europe. The carbon footprint of avocados is huge, making the fruit a real climate killer.
By writing this, we do not want to condemn eating an avocado now and then. It is just important to know about the dark sides and effects of the food you consume. This does not mean, you should never eat avocado again. Maybe simply do not eat it every day or week, and when you do, keep its long history and worth in mind.
After terminating in a bit of a bummer paragraph, let’s get back to the good things and find out, how to make the best guacamole!
How to Make Guacamole At Home
We hope, this article made your mouth water and convinced you about the innumerable health benefits of avocado. To give this article some kind of happy ending, we will provide you with all essential information on how to make guacamole yourself.
Before we start: Guacamole is known to turn brown at least some hours after preparing it. There are some hacks, how to slow down this process – adding the pit to the guacamole dish, adding an extra teaspoon of lime juice or covering it from any light. Nevertheless, plan ahead and do not store it for too long.
To prepare a traditional Mexican guacamole at home, you will need the following ingredients:
- 2 ripe avocados
- 0.25 onion, finely chopped
- 1 jalapeño, finely chopped
- 0.25 cups of cilantro, finely chopped
- 1-2 teaspoons of lime juice
- salt to taste
- 1-2 tomatoes, finely chopped
How to proceed:
Firstly, peel the avocado and remove the core. Mash the avocado, either using a fork or a molcajete, until it reaches your desired consistency. Add everything except the salt and lime juice and mix well. At last, add the lime juice and salt to taste. And that’s it!
This guacamole goes very well with some traditional nachos or as a sauce in tortillas.
The recipe on how to make a traditional guacamole was taken from mylatinatable.com.
Curious about more traditional products from Mexico? Check out our blog post about Mezcal.