Obama's view on guacamole: Yes please, but hold the peas

US President Barack Obama speaking at the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse.
US President Barack Obama speaking at the University of Wisconsin at La Crosse.PHOTO: AFP

MIAMI (AFP) ) President Barack Obama dipped into what has become a raging national debate pitting traditionalists against innovators when making guacamole, the mashed avocado treat that has become a favourite American indulgence.

The New York Times published a recipe in its weekly Food section Wednesday in which it recommends adding a healthy portion of peas to the avocados - a move the author freely acknowledged was "radical."

"The peas add intense sweetness and a chunky texture to the dip, making it more substantial on the chip," food writer Melissa Clark wrote in her column.

Guacamole lovers across the United States - including Obama - turned up their noses at the thought.

"Respect the nyt, but not buying peas in guac.," Obama wrote under his #POTUS handle when queried by a Twitter user Wednesday about how he viewed the Times' update of the classic recipe.

The president shared with his more than three million Twitter followers that in his view, the essentials for guacamole are "onions, garlic, hot peppers. classic." A large swathe of the US public appeared to agree with president's traditionalist take, which by midday Thursday had been retweeted some 15,000 times and favourited 19,000 times.

Not to be outdone, Republican presidential contender Jeb Bush also weighed in, declaring on Twitter, "You don't put peas in guacamole," as the national debate raged on.

The Times' Clark - perhaps knowing that her recipe would be seen as sacrilege in a nation where the avocado dip has become a mainstay of post-work happy hours and weekend TV bingeing - wrote that peas do more than just enhance guacamole's chunky texture.

"They also intensify the color of the green avocado and help the guacamole stay that way. Pea guacamole keeps its bright hue in the fridge for a few days without turning brown around the edges," she wrote, apparently converting few if any guacamole purists.

Meanwhile, the trade group representing farmers who furnish most of America's avocados also endorsed the president's view.

"We will have to agree with @POTUS on this one," Avocados from Mexico wrote on Twitter.

"Stop the #guacamole madness now," the group added. "Peas out!"