Friday, May 27, 2011

Avocados: A Taste of California Sunshine!

I'm crazy about avocados. So I was very excited when my box of California Avocados arrived at my doorstep today. As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received the beauties you see here:

I love the pretty little magnets that were thoughtfully tucked inside the box with them. They're now decorating my new fridge, and they make me smile whenever I look at them.

Avocados are one of nature's most amazing foods and were once a luxury reserved only for royalty. They're a nutritional powerhouse packed with vitamins A, C, and E and minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iron all wrapped up in a package of buttery-like goodness. They also contain the highest concentration of dietary fiber of any commonly eaten fruit.

Here are some other interesting avocado facts: California produces about 90 percent of the nation's avocado crop, and San Diego County is the Avocado Capital of the US, producing 60 percent of all the avocados grown in California. A single California Avocado tree can produce about 500 avocados (or 200 pounds of fruit) a year! There are over 400 varieties of avocados, and the ones I received are my favorite—of those I've had the good fortune to taste—Hass variety, which is known for its rich, nutty taste and creamy, pale green flesh.

Scientists believe that avocados have been cultivated in Mexico for about 10,000 years, so a Mexican meal seemed like the perfect way to enjoy them.

A Mexican meal would not be complete without a nice bowl of guacamole. I like my guacamole on the simple side, without onions, garlic, or cilantro, so that the flavor of the avocados really shines. I mash one with a spoon, mix it together with a splash of lime juice, sprinkle in some salt, pepper, and a touch of cumin, and add in a small chopped tomato.

Here's our little fiesta table of fajita fixins, salsa fresca, guacamole, and oven-roasted sweet plantains.

While not traditionally Mexican, this luscious raw lemon pudding is so crazy simple and creamy-dreamy delicious, I couldn't resist making it for dessert. It's super rich, so even a dainty portion will make you feel happy.


2 large ripe avocados, chopped
1/2 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup lemon juice


Please call ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Makes 4 servings.