Riffs on avocado toast

Avocado toast with different topping ideasWhat can possibly be written about avocado toast that hasn’t already been written elsewhere? Along with smoothie bowls, poke, cupcakes and pizza, it’s one of the most popular foods on Instagram. Avocado toast also been named the most annoying food in Instagram ūüėČ

At it’s most basic, you just mash or slice half an avocado onto a slice of toast. Boom. To prevent the avocado browning too quickly and to brighten up the flavor¬†I like to squeeze in the juice of half a lime, Maldon sea salt, pepper and a tiny splash of good olive oil. Maybe some red pepper flakes if I’m feeling spicy.

basic avocado toast

  • Servings: 1 piece of toast
  • Difficulty: ridiculously easy
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Ingredients:
Your choice of toasted bread
1/2 ripe avocado
1 lime
1 tsp good olive oil
Salt (preferably Maldon sea salt) & Pepper (preferably fresh ground black pepper)

Directions:
1. Scoop the avocado flesh out of the skin (remove the pit)
2. Squeeze in as much or as little lime juice as you like, I like mine fairly citrusy so I usually use the juice of half a lime
3. Add the olive oil, sprinkle of salt and pepper
4. Mash the avocado with a fork – as smooth or as chunky as you like
5. Taste and add more salt and pepper as needed
6. Spread on hot toast (or bread or crackers)
7. Add additional toppings – see topping ideas below

Different ideas for avocado toast toppings
If you’re an avocado toast aficionado, here are a few topping suggestions to take your toast to the next level. And of course, you can easily combine toppings – red onion, tomato and cayenne and you’re almost at guacamole toast!

Avocado toast topping ideas (from left to right by row):
1. Slices of red fresno chili
2. Sprinkle of cayenne pepper
3. Sliver of jalapeno
4. Diced red onion
5. Sweet cherry tomato
6. Maldon sea salt and pink peppercorns
7. Drops of sriracha
8. Extra lime juice
9. Crunchy red radish

Did I mention avocado is good for you? Half an avocado contains around 150 calories but most of that is made up of heart-healthy, cholesterol-lowering monounsaturated fat.

And….because it’s Cinco de Mayo tomorrow and maybe you’ll have a few avocados laying around after making your toast, here’s a bonus recipe – my favorite chunky guacamole recipe:Chunky fresh guacamole with hot chile

Think of this as a loose starting point. If you’re a huge onion fan, add more! If you can’t stand cilantro (me!), then skip it. If you like a mild guacamole, skip the fresh chile or maybe just add a little mild anaheim chile. If you like it hot then graduate to a jalapeno or even habanero. Check out the range of heat in various chiles here.

Quick and Chunky Guacamole

  • Servings: 4 as a snack
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:
2 perfectly ripe avocados
2 limes (ideally at room temperature for more juice)
1-2 garlic cloves – crushed in garlic press or finely sliced
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp finely diced red onion
1 tomato diced
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Your choice of fresh chile – anaheim, serrano, jalapeno, habanero
Small bunch of cilantro (if you like it) – washed and finely chopped

If you want a more authentic approach then you’d want to get your hands on a molcajete (a large pestle and mortar made of volcanic rock) to grind your garlic, salt and onion into a paste, but this is the quick and easy version so…

Directions:
1. With the palm of your hands, roll the limes back and forth on the counter a few times, this will give you more juice. Cut the limes in half and squeeze all the juice into a bowl.
2. Cut the avocado in half lengthways, remove the pit. Scoop out the avocado flesh and add it to the lime juice. You’ll have giant chunks of avocado at this point. Toss in the lime juice to prevent browning.
3. Add the minced garlic, diced tomato, red onion, cayenne pepper, salt, and cilantro (reserve a little cilantro for garnish)
4. Finely chop the fresh chile if using. Use gloves if you have them or even a fork to hold your chile while you chop it (if you have chile oils on your fingers and then touch your eyes or mouth you will be in pain!), remove the seeds (unless you REALLY like heat) and add to bowl.
5. Toss ingredients and then use a sharp knife to loosely chop the avocado while in the mix, I like fairly big chunks, if you want a smoother guacamole you can use a fork to mash.
6. Taste the guacamole and adjust to your taste – more salt? more cayenne? Transfer into serving dish and sprinkle with extra cilantro.

Serve with warm corn tortilla chips. Ideally you’ll want to eat the guacamole immediately. If you need to eat it a little later you can cover the surface tightly with plastic wrap and store in the fridge. Note that the heat from the chile will intensify the longer you leave it. You can also save one of the avocado pits and add it to the guacamole to (allegedly) reduce browning, remember to remove it before serving!

Quick and easy chunky guacamole with warm corn tortilla chips

Perfect with a cold cerveza or margarita!

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