Avocados are a stone fruit native to Central and South America and a food that I have become enamoured with in the last while.  Their creamy, comforting texture makes them a great addition to many warm and cold recipes – in pastas, salads, salad dressings, smoothies (who needs dairy when you can get the same texture from an avocado..)

They are good for;

  • monounsaturated fatty acids
  • potassium
  • Vitamin E
  • B vitamins (folate, B6, B5)
  • Vitamin K
  • Fibre
  • Carotenoids (which have antioxidant functions – see below)

The monounsaturated (healthy) fats –  are nourishment to our brain, they keep us younger (in body and mind).

Avocados have been shown to actually lower cholesterol¹ and despite the apparent contradiction with its fat (again healthy) content, it may help with weight loss.  It’s all down to the fat burning capabilities related to its metabolism kickstart actions.

The consumption of avocados with salads or salsa apparently increases the digestive absorption of carotenoids,  adding to it’s potential health benefits.²

Ready to eat avocados should yield to some gentle pressure,  once they are ripened keep them in the fridge.

Don’t forget once halved to remove the stone.   Some advocate using the stone by pulverising it in a blender as it apparently contains loads of good stuff but I have never tried this so can’t comment.  I’ll stick to the avocado flesh for now!

Some delicious culinary uses for avocado;

  1. Guacamole (often the first  thing one thinks of on mentioning avocado)
    See attached the recipe for “Gorgeous Guacamole” which is from one of the recipe sites on Favourites,  can’t remember which.

Gorgeous guacamole

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Avocado chocolate mousse (Deliciously Ella)

How about this for an alternative dessert, check out Deliciously Ella’s book and/or website for the recipe or concoct your own using cacao/cocoa powder, almond butter, bananas and dates.

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Deliciously Ella’s avocado chocolate mousse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Stir fry with turkey/chicken and wilted greens

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Turkey and avocado

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Mashed avocado on toast

avocado on toast tomato (800x614)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. Dressings

Make your own creamy (dairy free) dressing with half an avocado, clove of garlic, blended with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, half a squeezed lemon and  black pepper.

6. Dips

Make your own dip by mashing avocado with some herbs, lime or lemon juice, pinch of chilli flakes or paprika and basically just experiment till you have your new homemade delicious dip with accompaniment of choice such as crackers or oat cakes.

So enjoy your amazing avocados,   just hope that when you cut your ripe avocado in half that it hasn’t gone all brown inside  (always a massive disappointment  🙂  )

 

 

¹ http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25567051

² http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3664913/

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1843/2