Blood oranges, (in my opinion, the most decadent of the citrus fruits), are in season. “You have to try this,” said some friends last night over snacks and martinis in their San Francisco kitchen, handing over a particularly crimson fruit. “It’s like candy.”
I already had two blood oranges at home, and tossed another in my bag at the farmer’s market this morning to bring my haul to four. I’m not sure if they’re called blood oranges because of their bright vermillion hue, or because when you find yourself compelled to bring them to your mouth and suck them greedily, with rivulets of red nectar running down your chin, you take on a satisfying vampiric aspect.
Pondering the blood orange may leave you with many questions, but I can offer at least one satisfying solution: Blood Orange Guacamole. Citrus, (particularly in concert with salt and heat), is the perfect acid to perk up the bland creaminess of avocados, (lime or lemon juice being an integral ingredient in traditional guacamole.) With the addition of the sweeter blood orange to the guacamole below, the dish ends up tart, spicy, sweet, and salty, all at once.
P.S. Berkeley folks– see if they’re doing blood orange aguas frescas at Tacubuya right now. They’re worth the effort of finding parking on 4th St.
Blood Orange Guacamole
- 4 ripe avocados
- 4 blood oranges
- 2 jalapeno or serrano chiles
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Half a cilantro bunch, de-stemmed
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 1/2 teaspoons (or to taste) sea salt or kosher salt
- Mash the flesh of the avocados in a sturdy bowl.
- Squeeze in the juice of one lime.
- Sprinkle in the salt, and mash again.
- Dice the jalapenos and add to the bowl.
- Mince the cilantro leaves and add.
- Mince the garlic and add.
- Stir all ingredients until well incorporated.
- Cut each blood orange into a rough square, (this will accomplish removal of all the peel; slice off any small pieces that remain. Save the peel; there will still be some flesh attached, and later you can sink your teeth into each one and hungrily extract the juice, as is a cook's prerogative.) Now dice each square into pieces roughly 1/2 inch by 1/2 inch.
- Gently fold your diced blood orange into the guacamole, (don't stir vigorously, as you don't want the fruit to break and give up too much of its juices.)
- Taste, add more salt if necessary, and serve.