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The Best Way to Dice Avocados
My guacamole recipe calls for three ripe avocados, diced into ½ inch pieces. While I started off dicing my avocados by hand, I needed to make quite a few batches of guacamole during my testing process, and this prep step quickly became tedious. In search of a faster way to dice or partially mash the fruit, I combed through the test kitchen utensil drawers, attacking my avocados with a potato masher, a large spoon, and a pastry cutter, but none produced satisfactory results. Finally, I came across a tool that did the trick: A wire rack. Here’s how the method works.
1. Place a wire rack (the kind that has the wires running perpendicular to each other, forming a grid) over a large bowl.
2. Cut your avocados in half and remove the pit. Leave the skin on.
3. Place the avocado, flesh side down, atop the wire rack. Place a flat hand atop the avocado’s skin and gently but firmly press the avocado through the rack to dice.
The Best Way to Mash Avocados
Now that you’ve got a bowl full of perfectly-diced avocado, it’s time to mash. In the test kitchen, there was no consensus on what makes for the perfect guacamole texture: When I set out different versions of the dip, some of my colleagues pounced on a thick and chunky mash, while others argued passionately for the merits of a creamy, smooth consistency.
My solution? A peaceful compromise: A creamy base with chunks scattered throughout. To achieve this texture, I needed a specific tool that would cut through the avocado but not break it down too much. Enter: a whisk.
What makes a whisk an ideal guacamole implement? Unlike rubber spatulas, wooden spoons, and potato mashers, which are all too flat, a whisk has a rounded top where the wires meet, which mashes the avocado efficiently. Moreover, the gaps between the wires along the body allow most of the avocado chunks to remain whole during mixing, and the rounded shape conforms to the bowl.
With just a couple of quick turns of the whisk, I had it: A guacamole with the perfect ratio of chunks to mash, in record time.