Avocado Basics: Date Added: 18 May 2011 Ingredients:

Avocado is a unique fruit that comes in a variety of shapes and sizes: it ripens after picking, carries heart-healthy fat but contains no starch or sugar. Most of the avocadoes we buy come from southern California, and if you live in an area where avocadoes are abundant, you do want to limit the amount you eat to one-half per day. Here in the Northeast the cost limits how much we eat, which is probably a good thing because a whole avocado can carry 300 calories. If you live in an area such as California, where they are more plentiful, you need to think about how much avocado you eat. They are an excellent source of potassium and Vitamins A and C. Buy slightly underripe and place in a paper bag with a banana. The banana speeds the ripening process.

Cooking Instructions:

No cooking required; cooking can actually turn it bitter and alter the texture. Refrigerate only after fully ripened with pit still in. Once sliced, add lime or another source of Vitamin C to stop the browning or wrap in airtight plastic wrap. Use refrigerated avocadoes within one day. When an avocado is ripe and I cannot eat it right away, I slice it, remove the pit, and cover it with plastic wrap so all contact with air is eliminated, to prevent browning, and freeze it until ready to use.

To make guacamole, mash a ripe avocado with lemon or lime juice and minced onion, and season with salt and pepper. Serve right away over lettuce instead of a salad dressing.

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