If it's good enough to impress Sam Sifton, the NYT food reviewer, and was so ridiculously easy to make, then it reeks of irresponsibility for me not to try it. Sifton listed this version of that old party app standby as one of "of the 15 best things I ate in New York City in the past year of reviewing restaurants for The New York Times." If it's one the 15 best things he ate, then it must be one of the 2 best things I've eaten, maybe ever. Well, it wasn't, but it was a damn good bowl of guacamole. Anything but tired and played out, this guac from chef Julian Medina of theater district restaurant Toloache is practically bouncy with the brilliant addition of fresh diced fruit, sweet/tart dried cherries (in my version), and pomegranate seeds. What really made it interesting, though, and what got the most comments at the party I took it to, was the addition of basil in place of the usual cilantro. This is too easy not to make, and too delicious to quit eating!
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Guacamole de Frutas
adapted from Julian Medina, Toloache, Manhattan
1 tablespoon finely diced sweet onion, like Vidalia
1 teaspoon finely diced seeded jalapeño pepper
1 teaspoon lime juice
2 tablespoons finely diced peeled Granny Smith apple
2 tablespoons finely diced peeled Asian pear
2 tablespoons dried cranberries (I didn't have cranberries, but used dried Montmorency cherries from Trader Joe's that worked perfectly.- bb)
1 teaspoon thinly sliced basil, preferably Thai
2 ripe Haas avocados
1 tablespoon fresh pomegranate seeds.
1. In a nonreactive mixing bowl, combine onion, jalapeño, lime juice and a pinch salt. Mix well, and add the apple, pear, cranberries and basil. Mix again.
2. Cut the avocados in half, scoop out the pulp and mash it with the ingredients in the bowl. Adjust salt to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl and top with pomegranate seeds. If desired, serve with warm corn tortillas or chips.
Yield: About 1 1/2 cups (4 servings).