Categorized |Vegetarian

You say guacamole, I say zaboca choka.

trini zaboca chokaZaboca (avocado) season was one of favourite times of the year when we were growing up on the islands. Now my seasons are reduced to summer, winter, spring and fall. As a kid we enjoyed, mango season, avocado season, plum season.. you get the picture… the fruit dictated the seasons for us. To this day, whenever someone’s visiting Canada from the islands they usually bring me some of those wonderful pears we call Zaboca(providing they’re in season). Sure they’re readily available in the grocery stores here, but they’re the tiny varieties we get from California and Mexico. On the islands we grow some that are just as or even bigger that grapefruits. I was at the supermarket this morning and after my eyes focused on the pile of avocados from California it occurred to me that I haven’t posted a zaboca choka recipe yet. Enjoy!

You’ll need…

1 tablespoon minced sweet onion
1 clove garlic crushed
1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
dash of salt (less that 1/8 teaspoon)
1 med-large avocado (ripe)
1 teaspoon minced cilantro or shado beni
1/4 habanero or your favourite hot pepper

Start by crushing the garlic, hot pepper and salt. Place these ingredients in a bowl or mortar and crush to a fine paste. The salt will help break everything down.

zaboca choka

avocado choka

Peel and slice the avocado in pieces, then place in the same bowl with the crushed pepper and garlic, now crush this as well. You can also use the back of a fork to crush the avocado as well. I have a wooden pestle that I use for instances like this.

dip recipe

avacado dip recipe

Mince the onion and cilantro (or shado beni) and add to the mixture. If you don’t like the texture of minced onions, you may also grate the onion into the mix instead. Now add the lemon juice, stir and taste for salt. In the past I’ve also added a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil to the mixture. This is up to you.

trinidad zaboca choka

avacado dip recipe

trini zaboca choka

Serving Suggestions.

- as a dip for your favourite corn chips or crackers

- as a spread on sandwiches

- as a spread on tortilla type wraps (I would add a bit of water cress or lettuce with this on a wrap)

- as a filling for pita bread

and… with hot roti or fry bake as I enjoyed as a kid. This morning I enjoyed mine on sourdough bread sandwich.

Leave me your comments below.

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38 Responses to “You say guacamole, I say zaboca choka.”

  1. Carl says:

    Simple, tasteful and healthy.. thank you Sir!

    Btw, we say either Guacamole or Avocado dip, but here in Chile it’s simply called Palta

  2. Petal says:

    How I miss my childhood in Trinidad, mangoes, zaboca, plums, cashews, cerise, tipi tambu, gri gri, pewah, gru gru boef… I am so homesick here in NJ but have little family left in T&T and I don’t know where they are. I came here as a child in 1972. So homesick for our food, our people, our culture. It saddens me when I read of the crime and how things have changed in Trinidad. Good people you make the difference! Stand up! show yourselves. Thanks Chris.

  3. Navin says:

    This!!!!! this is an awesome recipe! i have my own east indian twist with this by adding a teaspoon of MUSTARD oil! in any chokha, mustard oil is an amazing addition to flavour! try it out!

  4. Hello……How I miss my Zaboca from Trinidad….the stuff they sell in London makes me laugh…its so small,the one I had in trini was biggggg and taste like something so difficult to describe…..but I was never keen on choka ,,,with all the pepper,garlic,onion etc one could hardly taste the zaboca ….lemon yes as it prevents the fruit from turning brown…..anyway ”to each his own” thanks will keep in touch…….regards from Querino de-Freitas………….

  5. kenny ian smith says:

    hey nice one, this is the mexican treat. but in trinidad we call that zaboca choka. or if you don’t know the meaning of zaboca, it is amarindians word for avocado.

  6. Rosie says:

    Hi Chris,

    This tastes good with breadfruit chips.

  7. de Leon says:

    Chris you are a boss, always bringing the best of the islands to showcase. I like this simple quick fix, good for a get together or a house lime. Keep up the great work, it is greatly appreciated.

  8. Msmervene says:

    I love guacamole on bake with cheese

  9. Zora says:

    Hi Chris thank you sooo much for your lovely recipes everyone of your dishes is fingerlicking.going to Guyana on the 1st December 2012 and can't wait to see my country once again. would love to have the recipe for Cassava Bread….tried to make it but no sucess. Do you know the secret? If you do please let me know how to make it…Keep up with your good work.

  10. Ramona says:

    This is great …but U wont believe ..I always heard about it but preferred to eat my Zaboca as is…..but I got two ways to do it from two old timers:)….one way just as you did it except for the cilantro and it was 'chunka'.with hot oil…the other way which I havent tried yet is ….cut it in small chunks and add onion, garlic pepper, lil black pepper, lime juice, salt and then 'chunka' ….it's not that different but you know everyone has their favorite method.

  11. Cindy says:

    And to believe….all this time I thought my parents invented "zaboca choka!" I guess it's a Trini thing after all! I'm going to have to give this a try, looks great :)

  12. Kecia says:

    Hey Chris,
    thanks for the recipe for guacamole. I love avocado so much I don't know if I will get to make the guacamole. Yes everything is great except the cilantro, can't stand to smell it or taste it, it gives me a headache but if it is cooked in the food and you can't taste it, then I'm good. Keep up what you're doing. It helps all of us out when we can't think of what to cook and just to have a great delicious dish to make and add to our recipes is always great.

  13. lisa maharaj says:

    This is really known home here in Trinidad. Had this with hot sada roti last evening!

  14. Chrissie says:

    I'm lovin it! in the UK we get avocados that are smaller then my fist and they are labled large avocado. Can you imagine the look on an English person's face if they saw a true Trini zaboca pear from 8 to 12 inches in length. I miss the old tree in the house I grew up in back home, as well as the July mango tree, the coconut trees the plum tree, portugal tree, lime tree…… if ya catch my drift.

  15. Marvin says:

    This is so funny, yesterday I did your saltfish and pumpkin and recipe with the Sada just how your mom made it. It was a hit, my mother in law said all it was missing was the Zaboca lol One day too late Chris lol but next time I'll be ready for her. Keep em coming love your body of work


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