Monday, 11 June 2007

TGRWT#3 Berry Good Guacamole

I am a big fan of the blog event that Martin at has recently started called They Go Really Well Together. Martin seeks out compatible but unusual ingredients, based on scientific reasoning that is interesting but a bit beyond me. This month Evelin at Bounteous Bites is hosting and the challenge is to bring strawberries and coriander together. This is my entry.

Strawberries often seem the plain Jane of berries – not as exotic or sharp as some of their berry cousins. But they often provide good honest refreshment on a cake or pavlova and they are look so pretty. I never appreciated how good they could be till I lived in the UK where they have an intense sweetness I never find in our Melbourne strawberries.

Fresh coriander is more of a challenge for me. It looks great but I just can’t understand its recent popularity because it tastes like soap to me. I use the dried variety at times but avoid it fresh. But strawberries seem best suited to the fresh green leaves and so I decided it was time to face the hip young herb that has everyone talking.

What to make? I saw a sweet strawberry soup months ago but threw away the magazine. Martin suggested rice paper rolls, salsa and muffins. Sounded good. Then I was inspired as I washed my hair with my strawberry shampoo and avocado conditioner yesterday morning. I remembered Eat’n Veg’n’s recent love of this combination and the pieces fell into place. Holy guacamole Batman! Oh yes! I love putting finely chopped tomato in guacamole so the small red pieces appear like jewels in the bright green dip. But instead of tomato, I would put in strawberries, and add some coriander.

It is not strawberry season in Melbourne and I had to try it before I could organize myself to get to one of our fine markets. The supermarket was selling Californian strawberries for $8 a 375g punnet! So I felt slightly better, but not much, to find a punnet of Australian strawberries for $5. Still felt like daylight robbery. Especially as they were not delicate small sweet berries but monsters that would look at home in one of the B-grade sci-fi movies E loves so much.

The guacamole was great – the sweet succulence of the strawberries contrast nicely with the creaminess of the avocado and the coriander adds an interesting flavour – but still seems a little soapy! I think I could have had even more berries in it next time. And it was spicy thanks to a chilli pepper grown by my sister-in-law Miriam. Most delicious on toast with sauerkraut (thanks Lucy for the suggestion).

Berry Guacamole

Flesh of 1 avocado, mashed
2 large strawberries, finely chopped
1 tbsp coriander, finely chopped
Juice of ½ a small lemon
1 small red chilli, finely chopped
1 medium garlic clove, crushed
4 pepperberries (or peppercorns), ground
1/4 tsp raspberry vinegar
Pinch salt

Mix all ingredients.

On the Stereo:
The Hill for Company: Sodastream


  1. That´s a surprise indeed. I have to taste it, sounds very intriguing. :))

  2. Love the colours in this dish. :)

  3. Nice combination. Coriander's a hard one, isn't it? People either love it or hate it.

    Love that your shower ritual inspired something so creative.

  4. i just found your blog today and it looks fab so i will add it to my bookmarks...but what i really wanted to say is that i've been listening to the Toronto Veg Association podcast ( recommend it!) and in one episode they mentioned that there is some gene that only some people have that makes coriander/cilantro taste like soap. weird, huh!


  5. thanks maria helene - I often do guacamole without any yoghurt or sour cream so I think strawberries work with breaking up the rich creaminess. And as Wendy so kindly says (thanks) it looks attractive too.

    Lucy and Andrea - glad you understand not everyone loves coriander - and a scientific explanation sounds a good defence.

    Andrea thanks for your comments but I can't link to your blog from your link - there is some blogger blockage - pls let me know your blog as would love to check it out.

  6. I would gobble this down but quick. What an excellent interpretation of this event's requirements. It was only a matter of time before someone re-invented guacamole.

    Dried cilantro is nothing like fresh, Johanna; tastes something like basil, quite innocuous for those who hate the real deal.

  7. What an interesting idea! Love the colour!
    Funny that you had the idea of the dish while you were having shower, because my ideas always come to me at the freakiest of times. And while I'm working out - of course I have food on my mind:D
    And what's even more interesting? You think coriander tastes like soap? I'd say avocado tastes like soap!:)Yes...tastes differ.

    By the way, I bought my strawberries 45 EEK per kg, that's about 4.6 Australian dollars. Unfortunately these are from Spain, Estonian strawberries are still 2 times more expensive.

  8. thanks Susan - I am not a fan of dried basil as it is such a pale imitation of the fresh stuff - maybe I would like a pale imitation of coriander :-)

    thanks Evelin - maybe that gives me hope about coriander if you think avocado tastes like soap - I used to dislike it but now it is like manna from heaven - sorry to hear you have to pay exoribitant prices for strawberries too - in an ideal world we would pick them from our backyard.

  9. That was a great idea! I like coriander, but basil is my favourite herb and it goes really well with strawberries, why not try that next time?
    We are lucky, the strawberries are delicious just now in Scotland,! But I always smell them before I buy them. Graham doesn't like standing beside me in the supermarket!

  10. holler, I think basil is an excellent idea - I much prefer it and think it would be much nicer with strawberries than coriander - will keep it in mind

  11. That is such a cool guacamole idea! I would love to feature your recipe on our website, with credits and links to your blog of course. Please let me know if that would be okay. Thanks so much! -

  12. hi alisa - glad you like the recipe - that is fine for you to use it (with credits) - I like your site and will recommend it to my sister who has a mostly lactose free diet - I plan to check out some of your recipes when I get time

  13. That's a pretty inspired recipe! Great entry:)

  14. thanks Pille - I think blogging and blog events are great for inspiring me to do some different stuff!


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