Makes about ¾ cup

We all love guacamole with tortilla chips. But also consider using it as a sandwich spread or as a topping for chicken or fish. This simple recipe is divine as is, but you also can personalize it by using your choice of Add-Ins, which you'll find at the end of the recipe. For easy preparation, here's the best way to open an avocado: Cut it lengthwise around the pit and gently twist the halves to separate them. Remove the pit by striking it with the blade of a sharp knife, then twist to remove. Use a spoon to scoop out the avocado flesh.

1 fully ripened Mexican avocado, halved, pitted, and peeled (see Tip) 1 tablespoon minced onion 1 teaspoon minced jalapeño pepper ¼ teaspoon salt

In a small bowl, mash the avocado with a fork to make a slightly chunky mixture. Stir in the onion, jalapeño, and salt.

Optional Add-Ins: ¼ cup prepared salsa 1 tablespoon each chopped cilantro and fresh lime juice ½ cup chopped and seeded tomato, finely diced radish, or starfruit ¼ teaspoon minced garlic ½ teaspoon ground cumin Red or green hot pepper sauce to taste