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History / Geography Edit
The avocado originates from Central America, but is now grown in tropical and sub-tropical climates around the world. Varieties The two main kind of avocados found in the USA are: Haas, which are black and with bumpy skin currently being grown in California; and Fuerte, a thin, smooth skinned variety grown in Florida.
How to Select Edit
You will want to select an avocado that yields to gentle pressure, yet is firm. It should be unblemished and heavy for its size. Another test for ripeness is to take off the stem. If it is green underneath, the avocado is ripe. If it is brown underneath, it is not ripe.
The avocado is a fruit that has a mild hazelnut flavor and a buttery texture. It can be round to pear-shaped, thick to thin-skinned, green to purplish-black, and smooth skinned to bumpy skinned. The flesh is a very pale green color.
A ripe avocado can be stored in the refrigerator for a week.
Nutritional Qualities Edit
Vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin.
The avocado gets its name from ahuacatl, a Nahuatl word for "testicle."
Wine Pairings Edit
1 lb. fresh avocado = 2½ cup chopped = 1½ cups pureed
Serving Size Edit
½ avocado per person
A unripened avocado is easy to ripen at home, not to mention, avocados ripen better after they are picked! Just place an avocado in a brown paper bag at room temperature, and three days later, you will have a ripe avocado.
When cutting an avocado, remember that there is a huge pit in the center. When you have halved the avocado, hit the pit with the blade of your knife and twist. The pit should be able to be removed without damaging the flesh. Remember, once the flesh is cut, it will discolor rapidly, so always add cut avocado immediately before serving, or add lemon juice or lime juice to it to prevent discoloration.
Additional Information Edit
Web Sites: http://www.avocado.org
Jennifer Wickes may be contacted at http://home.comcast.net/~culinaryjen/Home.html CulinaryJen@comcast.net
Jennifer A. Wickes is a freelance food writer, researcher and cookbook reviewer. She has written several eBooks, and has had several articles and recipes in printed publications. She is working on her first cookbook.