I'm in a bit of an avocado frenzy these days. The origin of this madness is unknown but it's a delicious state to be in. I crave the creamy taste and smooth texture and have been coming up with new ways to incorporate the fruit (yes, it's a fruit) into our weekly eating.
Sadly, the boys aren't feeling as euphoric, but despite their disdain they, too, have been eating a bunch of avocado lately. They just aren't really aware of it. Actually, I think Ben is but thankfully he has kept it under wraps. I haven't been sneaking it into our foods, per se, I just haven't mentioned it's there. You know how it is.
Because I am intrigued by the foods I eat, I've done a little investigating into avocados. Here are some interesting facts I stumbled upon.
Did you know:
- There are more than 500 varieties of avocados.
- Their "other" name is Alligator Pear (for their shape and the texture of their skin)
- Avocados have the highest protein count of any fruit. They also have no sodium or cholesterol.
- They were once a luxury food reserved for royalty
- A California avocado tree can produce 500 avocados a year
- Avocados can be used as a homemade facial exfolliant
So, how have we been enjoying this little delicacy? Here are seven ways I've been adding avocado to our family meals.
Avocado Toast - Mash avocado in a bowl with a touch of sea salt, fresh ground pepper and 1 tsp. of lime juice. Spread over buttered whole wheat toast.
Avocado Banana Bread - see recipe below
Avocado and Blueberry Smoothies - Combine 1 cup of yogurt, 1/4 cup of orange juice, 1 cup of frozen blueberries and half an avocado in a blender. Puree until smooth.
Avocado and Brie Quesadillas - Slightly mash avocado in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Spread mixture over one whole wheat tortilla. Place slices of brie on top and cover with another tortilla. Brush both sides with a touch of olive oil and grill until golden brown. Cut into wedges and serve.
Avocado and Bacon Pizza - Top your favourite pizza dough with a little olive oil, basil, bacon, chunks of avocado and monterrey jack cheese.
Avocado Fruit Kebobs - Alternate chunks of pineapple, strawberry and avocado on small wooden skewers. Serve with vanilla yogurt dipping sauce.
Avocado Sauce - Combine pureed avocado with apple sauce, pear sauce or mashed sweet potatoes for a delicious toddler treat.
Avocado Banana Bread, my recipe
- 3/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg + 1 egg white
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 avocado, removed from the skin and pitted
- 2 bananas, mashed
Preheat the oven to 350 and grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan. Set aside.
In a small mixing bowl, combine the flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
Place the sugars, egg, egg white, yogurt, oil, vanilla and avocado in a blender or food processor and puree. Pour the blended ingredients into the dry mixture, add the mashed banana and mix together until just combined.
Bake in the preheated oven for approx. 1 hour, or until the top of the loaf is golden brown and a tester inserted into the centre of loaf comes out clean.