01 May 2010

The Art of Avocados

Every Sunday, or almost, my boyfriend and I go to his mom's apartment for dinner. This woman is an incredible cook {which, so far as I can tell, is a genetic trait.} What I look most forward to every time, though, is her salad. More specifically - the avocados in her salad.

My boyfriend is fortunate enough to have grown up in Southern California, which instantly makes him foreign {read: attractive} to me. His mother grew up on an avocado farm, and says the quality of avocados carried in today’s grocery stores are comparable the ones their dogs used to eat off the ground.

My own adventure in eating avocados, although short-lived, hasn’t gone so well so far. I started a few years ago after reading an article about how to easily cut calories. The recipe was for chocolate chip cookies, and looking back now, I can clearly see the best way to cut calories there would have been to omit the cookies from my diet altogether. Hindsight, you bitch. The recipe called for half an avocado to substitute for half the butter. My experience with avocados being as limited as it was, I definitely didn’t wait until it was ripe enough. Instead of a butter-like mush, I ended up with a bunch of chopped green bits that stuck out of my cookies even more noticeably than my chocolate chips. The cookies tasted exactly the same, and the added benefit was that no one accepted my offer to try them – more for me!

I later graduated to guacamole {wait… this green stuff is made from my new favorite fruit??} and other yummy foods. I now try to top my bagel every morning with freshly sliced avocados. The problem I’ve been running into though, is cutting through the tough green skins to reveal a brown, overripe fruit. I discussed this with my boyfriend’s mom, while simultaneously praising her salad for the umpteenth time. She then revealed to me a secret, which I’m going to pass on to you. The trick to buying avocados is to make sure the part where the fruit was attached to the tree, or the “nub” {scientific term} is still intact. If that piece falls off, the fruit will rot before it ripens. Leaving that piece on, however, yields the most ripe, most delicious fruit I’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing. And if they ripen before you need them, simply put them in the fridge! I’m only glad she gave me this information during the “still trying to impress her phase,” where I still have no problem saying, “You’re right.”

For Stellar Avocados:

Buy fruit from your favorite grocer {ahem Trader Joe's} with nub intact.

Let it sit out for a few days until the skin turns a deep brown color and it's slightly soft to the touch. {If you aren't using it immediately after it ripens, put it in the fridge!}

Cut the ripe avocado in half lengthwise.

And Enjoy! To remove the pit, strike it with the knife holding it parallel to the fruit, then pull the pit away from the fruit.

1 comment:

  1. omg i LOVE avocados. When I was in Chile they had the most amazing avocados ever, and I'm not sure I will ever taste something that delicious again. Also, I am intrigued by this avocado-instead-of-butter thing...