Kay Wheeler Moore

Welcome to my blog

Hello. . .

The Newfangled Country Gardener is for anyone who has a garden, would like to have a garden, or who simply enjoys eating the garden-fresh way. I don't claim to be an expert; in this blog I'm simply sharing some of the experiences my husband and I have in preparing food that is home-grown.

About the author

Kay Wheeler Moore is the author of a new cookbook, Way Back in the Country Garden, that features six generations of recipes that call for ingredients that are fresh from the garden. With home gardening surging in popularity as frugal people become more resourceful, this recipe collection and the stories that accompany it ideally will inspire others to cook the garden-fresh way and to preserve their own family food stories as well. The stories in this book center around the Three Red-Haired Miller Girls (Kay's mother and aunts) who grew up in Delta County, TX, with their own backyard garden so lavish that they felt as though they were royalty after their Mama wielded her kitchen magic on all that was homegrown. Introduced in Kay's previous book, Way Back in the Country, the lively Miller Girls again draw readers into their growing-up world, in which a stringent economic era--not unlike today's tight times--saw people turn to the earth to put food on the table for their loved ones. The rollicking yarns (all with recipes attached) have love, family, and faith as common denominators and show how food evocatively bonds us to our life experiences.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Unique guacamole recipe relies on lemons, serrano peppers, chunky avocado

On arriving in the West at the home of our son, we were escorted to his backyard citrus grove and invited to pick from the trees. Lemons practically the size of basketballs spilled from our arms as we plucked the fruit and toted them away. I’ve never hacked into a single lemon and procured enough juice from one to make an entire container of lemonade, but such were the properties of these monster yellow orbs. Texas isn’t the only state in which things grow king-sized.

To find usages for these whopper lemons I pulled out a recipe from a recent Prevention magazine. It featured cooking ideas from actress Eva Longoria. Her pet recipe for Chunky Guacamole with Serrano Peppers called for lemon juice instead of the traditional lime juice for guacamole. To create the 1/2 cup of lemon juice for this guacamole dish I was amply supplied.

Native Texan Longoria was quoted as saying that avocados left chunky instead of mashing them up smooth makes a better salad and that serrano peppers give it a greater kick than the usual jalapenos do. No mayonnaise or sour cream are added, as sometimes occurs with guacamole. The flavors of the avocados, tomatoes, onion, cilantro, serrano pepper, and lemon juice stand on their own.

A tip: leaving one peeled avocado pit pressed into the center of the salad mixture prevents the guacamole from turning brown. I tried this; it really works! The next morning after having been left overnight in the fridge the avocado chunks still were bright green.

This lemon-spiked treat is wonderful with tortilla chips as an appetizer or as a garnish on top of a steak or (as we used it) atop grilled salmon.

Chunky Guacamole with Serrano Peppers

6 avocados, roughly chopped
4 medium tomatoes, chopped
1/2 large white onion, finely chopped
2 teaspoons salt (or salt substitute)
1 cup chopped cilantro (from 1 bunch)
1 serrano chile pepper, finely chopped
enough juice squeezed from fresh lemons to make 1/2 cup

Into a large bowl put avocados, tomatoes, onion, salt, cilantro, pepper, and lemon juice. Stir gently until ingredients are well combined. Makes 8 cups.

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