I want to begin this post with an apology; I’m aware that I haven’t posted in a while! I could drag out endless excuses- be them the true reason for my lengthy silence or not- but I’ll just stick with a straight apology for being otherwise engaged for a while and not posting anything.
I thought I would open things back up with a delicious recipe that I found a couple of weeks back on Tasty Kitchen, which I made and discovered was delicious!
For reasons unbeknownst even to myself, I have recently fallen in love with Alligator Pears (!), of course more commonly known as avocados. So, due to this new found love of the fruit, I have been trying to find as many different ways I can use it as possible (perhaps I should change my name to ‘The Cosy Avocado’!!). One of the recipes I found was for a creamy avocado sauce for spaghetti- now one of my favourite dishes, as it proved so delicious and velvety.
So I thought I would start by exploring some interesting facts about avocados!
The tree that bears the creamy wonders is officially referred to as Persea Americana. It’s a tropical American tree, needing a climate without frost and with little wind. The trees grow to around 20 metres high and need soils around 1 metre deep to grow at their best. These conditions aren’t particularly common. A few of the places avocados can grow with ease are southern Spain, Morocco, Colombia, Peru, New Zealand and the Philippines. The avocado is a climacteric fruit (it enters a phase after harvest whereby it continues to ripen), as are bananas.
‘Avocado’ derives from the Nahuatl word ahuacatl, which also means ‘testicle’ (slightly off-putting?!), so they are presumably named so due to their typically growing in pairs, or simply because of their shape. The word ahuacatl was compounded with others, for example ahuacamolli, which means ‘avocado soup or sauce’, from which the Spanish-Mexican word ‘guacamole’ derives. In South America, some call it la manzana del invierno, which translates to ‘the apple of the winter’. Legend has it that an early English description of ‘avocado’ called it the ‘avogado pear’, leading to the misunderstanding of ‘alligator pear’ (a name for it that I particularly favour!). Though, the shell of an avocado does vaguely resemble the texture of a crocodile or alligator, and they look similar to an alligator eye when cut in half, so I think the name is actually rather fitting.
Some other interesting facts that may spike some interest:
– Avocados have only five grams of fat per serving
– Brazilians add avocados to ice cream
– Avocados are the size of a baby in its mother’s womb at sixteen weeks
– Filipinos puree avocados with sugar and milk for a dessert drink
– All avocados are picked by hand
– A single California Avocado tree can produce about five hundred avocados a year.
So now that you’re an avocado buff and know loads about the fruit, here’s the recipe I mentioned, with images- how exciting!
Ingredients (for 3 people):
– 1 tablespoon oil
– 1 whole onion, diced
– 3 garlic cloves, minced
– 190 grams Arborio rice
– 1 whole vegetable stock cube
– 1 litre hot water
– 2 whole avocados, peeled and pitted
– 100 grams mild cheese (I used simple cheddar, but you could also use the likes of edam)
– 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
– Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Heat the oil in a large pan, and cook the onion and garlic over a medium-low heat for 5 minutes, until soft and translucent.
2. Add the rice and cook for a further 2 minutes.
3. In a bowl, mix the stock cube with about 150ml hot water and stir to dissolve. Then add this into the pan.
4. Cook, stirring, until the liquid has nearly all been absorbed.
5. Add more hot water, about 150ml at a time, again waiting for it to be mostly absorbed before adding more, and stirring regularly.
6. Continue adding water until the rice is cooked to your liking (risotto is generally best when creamy but with a bite to the rice).
7. Meanwhile, put the avocado into a bowl and coarsely mash with a fork, along with the salt and pepper.
8. When the rice is cooked, add the cheese, then the mashed avocado and chopped parsley.
9. Mix until everything is combined.
Eat up the delicious alligator pear risotto and bask in the creamy bliss that comes with it!
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning more about my beloved fruit. Thank you for reading, and have an explore of my other blog posts. If you like what you see, follow The Cosy Onion so that you can easily access new posts in the future!
The Cosy Onion