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Around Town: La Cañada guacamole

July 21, 2010|By Anita Susan Brenner

Summer. Lazy days. I was walking down Foothill Boulevard with Miss Audrey Hepburn, our black Lab rescue dog from the Pasadena Humane Society. It was a nice evening and a lot of the regulars were out, walking their dogs.

Suddenly Miss Hepburn stopped. There in front of us was an old, partly shredded copy of Gourmet, the now-defunct, formerly impeccable revista of foodie technique.

Miss Hepburn began to paw and sniff at the soiled magazine. Why was she so interested?

I looked down. There, on the cover of the ancient copy was a photograph of — guacamole.

This got me thinking. What with the spies and Mel Gibson, I've had limited time to cook and shop. I'm very involved in these matters. Take Mel Gibson, for example. Where was Jesse Jackson when Mel hassled the, uh, law enforcement officer of the Hebraic persuasion? Where was the Rainbow Coalition then? By the second tape, however, as George Lopez aptly noted, Mel had finally taken on the Latinos.

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Which brings us to the following. You can go to Ralphs and buy a tub of guacamole for $8. You can dine at Los Gringos Locos at 464 Foothill Blvd., ($7.99), or Lupe's Place at 1446 Foothill Blvd. (negotiable) or Doña Maria at 729 Foothill Blvd (varies).

Better still, you can make your own darn guacamole. Right here in La Cañada Flintridge. You can stay in the 91011 and make all the guacamole you want, with or without Mel Gibson, but preferably without. Here's how.

Ingredients: A good guacamole needs the following equipment and ingredients: A bowl. A fork. Jalapeños. Cilantro. Avocados. Garlic. Lemon. Salt. A tomato? Maybe. For the bowl to put it in, I prefer something from the Apple Cart at 1518 Foothill Blvd. For the fork to smoosh it in, I prefer T.J. Maxx at 663 Foothill Blvd.

This brings us to the jalapeños and cilantro. The best in town are at Lotte Market at 2135 Foothill Blvd. They have great garlic too. The Lotte Market is a small, packed-to-the-gills Korean grocery next to Kinko's. Their prices are reasonable and the veggies are fresh.

For avocados, I'd run back to Trader Joe's at 475 Foothill Blvd, near Starbucks. There are lots of avocados in town, but Trader Joe's are high quality, and the manager always, always, always supports local charities. PTA. Sports. Churches. Social groups. Trader Joe's has always come through for this town with merchandise and gift cards.

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