Saturday, April 3, 2010
I've been going crazy for avocados lately. I'm not sure exactly why, except for the fact that they taste fantastic and are extremely good for you. Yes, they're high in fat, (but it is very good fat that keeps your body sane and balanced), so you wouldn't want to overdo it and put on unwanted pounds. But, I find that if I keep my entire diet clean and consisting of whole foods, having fats that come from things like avocados and nuts don't cause a weight gain problem. I think one reason is that when you're not having lots of junky refined foods, your body is way better at communicating with itself and with you, so you end up eating only what and when you need to and not eating when you're not really hungry or in need of nutrients. Thinking about how smart my body actually is (as long as I'm willing to listen to it!) just makes me so happy. It's lots smarter than I am, for sure!
Anyway, back to avocados. They are anti-inflammatory to your system, contain lots of good vitamin E, B vitamins, and magnesium, and even help balance out your hormones. I like them a little on the firmer side of ripe, about like a perfect pear. You'll have to experiment and decide for yourself how ripe you like them.
When thinking of avocado recipes, most people think of guacamole first, so I'll tell you how I make it. I keep it VERY simple so that I can taste the rich avocado taste above anything else:
Place peeled avocado pieces from 2 avocados in a bowl. Sprinkle the juice of 1/2 a lemon or 1 whole lime over it, and give a few shakes of garlic powder or garlic salt. Chop it up a little with a pastry blender (or two knives). Don't attempt to blend it to a puree, just mash it up a little and leave lots of chunks of the avocado. It's ready!
Another way to enjoy avocados is to cut up 1/4 to 1/2 an avocado per person in a serving bowl and combine with chopped chunks of pink grapefruit. This is a bright and amazing flavor combination.
And, my favorite salad (which I have almost every day for lunch) is:
1/4 avocado, cut into chunks,
a handful of washed and chopped dandelion greens,
3 raw asparagus spears, chopped,
a medium-sized raw carrot, sliced
Combine all these in a bowl and give it a dash of apple cider vinegar. Mix it up and go for it.