Monday, May 19, 2014

Crab Guacamole

Life is Good! Crab Guacamole and Pacíficos
It was a busy day in our backyard yesterday. Baby rabbit was hopping in and out of the brush line behind the house and all the birds were making various runs at the feeder to secure food for their babies. Barn swallows were constantly winging the backyard trying to nab bugs on the go. The chickadees kept ferrying loads of suet from the feeder back to their babies in the nest box around the corner of the house. Swarms of goldfinches flitted from the feeders to the treetops and back-and-forth and all over, serenading us non-stop.

Meanwhile, the mockingbirds chased off anything to get anywhere near their little cedar tree where they must have a nest. Poor squirrel had most of the fur on his back plucked by the time he could get away from the angry mockingbird. The robins patrolled the grass and caught lots of worms and then stealthily worked their way around us to the nest right overhead in the pergola as red winged blackbird proclaimed one of the feeders his very own, flashing his epaulets and making his "chack chack" call. It was a very busy day in our backyard. And a great day to be alive and sharing it with Annie.

Ann asked me to make crab guacamole, so we grabbed a can of jumbo lump and some cilantro from the walk-in and stopped by the supermercado for a couple avocados, a couple limes, and a six of (I want to say cheap at this point, but $10 is not cheap) Mexican beer. I rarely drink beer and I never buy it at retail, so I kind of had sticker shock. I'm not advocating Pacífico as a good beer: it isn't. But as a vehicle for a wedge of lime on a warm day outside, it hit the spot!

Food Porn! Chipotle-Garlic Guacamole, Cilantro-Lime Crab, Tobiko
I make crab guac from time-to-time in the summer at the restaurant as an appetizer, and as something to munch on outside on the deck, it is hard to beat and couldn't be any simpler to put together. At the restaurant, we make big batches of cilantro-lime vinaigrette with which to dress the crab and we plate it in a ring mold so that you can see the layers better. But at home, who cares?

Cilantro-Lime Crab

1 pound jumbo lump crab
2 tablespoons very finely minced cilantro stems
zest of one lime
juice of half a lime
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste

Mix all the ingredients well and season to taste. Let stand to marinate while you assemble the guacamole.

Chipotle-Garlic Guacamole

I kind of feel stupid giving a recipe for guacamole. Basically, you throw in anything you want with mashed avocados.

2 avocados
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 chipotles in adobo, finely minced
1/2 cup finely minced cilantro
3/4 cup diced tomato
lime juice, to taste
salt, to taste

Put all the ingredients in a bowl and mash together with a fork. I like my guac with a little texture. You can make yours as smooth or as chunky as you like. I like a little spice in my guac and I like the smoky flavor of chipotle, so I put in one entire chipotle per avocado. You may not want that much. I would have put in some green onions, but I didn't have any. There are no rules. Make your guac how you want it.

For plate-up, ring mold discarded as too fancy for the back yard, spread the guac out over a plate and mound the crab on top. I like to throw a little tobiko and cilantro on top for garnish and I just so happened to have a tub of tobiko in my fridge from last week's summer rolls.

Enjoy with somebody you love!

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