WHAT’S not to love in an avocado? It’s delightful, buttery texture and flavourful taste make them the perfect complementary addition to any meal and salad. Think pelau with avocado, buljol with avocado, Crix and avocado, toast and avocado, sada and avocado. It’s even being used in desserts as well, my favourite is chocolate avocado mousse.
When mashed and seasoned they can be served as a dip or sandwich spread. They are especially nourishing, as they are full of vitamins and minerals, such as folate, vitamin A, and potassium. They also contain useful amounts of protein, iron, magnesium and vitamins C, E, and B6 and loaded with monounsaturated fatty acids.
So as with all other things, enjoy them through the season, because it will be another year until we can savour them again.
Avocado, tomato and black bean salad
2 large ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped into ½-inch pieces
½ green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped (red or white onion)
1 14 oz tin black beans, drained and rinsed and drained again
1 8 oz tin corn, drained, rinsed and drained again
2 clove garlic, minced
4 tbs lime juice
¼ cup olive oil
½ tsp sugar
1 large avocado cut into ½-inch pieces
⅓ cup chopped chives
2 tbs chadon beni
salt to taste
Combine in a large glass bowl the tomatoes, pepper, onion, beans and corn.
Combine garlic, lime juice, olive oil, sugar and salt. Whisk well or emulsify with a food processor or blender.
Pour onto tomatoes and beans in bowl toss gently
Refrigerate until ready for use, just about one hour.
Before serving add the avocado, toss gently, and sprinkle on chives and chadon beni.
Chocolate avocado mousse
2 large avocadoes, peeled and stoned
½ cup rich natural cocoa powder
¼ cup honey
¼ tsp cinnamon
Blend all ingredients together until smooth.
Spoon into individual serving glasses, cover and refrigerate for about 4 hours.
Makes 6 servings
Creamy avocado and crab soup
½ lb cooked crabmeat, picked over
2 large ripe avocadoes, peeled, and cut into 1-inch pieces
4 tbs butter
1 small onion, minced
1 clove garlic minced
¼ hot pepper, minced
1 tbs all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
2 cups chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
salt and black pepper to taste
1 tab chopped chives for garnish
Mash the crab with the avocado and set aside.
In a medium saucepan, melt butter, add onion, garlic and pepper and cook until fragrant.
Stir in flour and cook until mixture becomes slack.
Add milk, and stock, cook stirring until thick.
Stir in cream and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Stir in avocado and crab.
Cook until warm.
Serve garnished with chives.
Arepa coins with spicy shrimp and avocado cream
2 cups yellow cornmeal
2 cups hot water
½ cup butter
vegetable oil to fry
Combine butter with cornmeal and rub into flour.
Add water and knead to a soft dough.
Roll to ½-inch thickness and stamp out 1½-2-inch diameter pieces.
Preheat oil in frying pan and shallow fry until golden and cooked, about 5 minutes, drain and serve topped with the following topping. Spread some avocado cream onto an arepa coin, top with one shrimp. Continue until all shrimp and avocado are used up.
Makes about 20
½ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp chilli powder
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ tbs fresh lime juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1½ lbs medium sized shrimp (about 20), peeled and deveined
In a bowl combine all the dried spices, add garlic, lime juice, and rum.
Stir well to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Rub marinade onto shrimp, cover and refrigerate. Let marinate for about 30 minutes at most.
Preheat broiler and place shrimp in a shallow glass-baking dish lightly oiled with olive oil.
Broil for 3 minutes per side or until pink and slightly curled.
For the avocado cream:
1 avocado, mashed
½ tbs lime juice
1 cl garlic, minced
½ tsp Dijon mustard
¼ tsp cumin
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Mash avocado, add other ingredients and stir to a creamy consistency.
Refrigerate until ready for use.