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Avocados
(Excerpts from "Avocados From Seed To Supper")

      The fruit of Persea americana or P. gratissima, the avocado has many names; avocado-pear, or alligator pear, due to the pebbly, rough exterior of Hass variety;  Palta (the Incas name) in Chile, Peru and Ecuador, custard apple in West Africa, abogado in Spain, and avocat in France. The avocado is a New World fruit the Aztecs called ahuacatl from the Nahuatl language ahuacatl ("testicle"), referring to its shape. Avocados have been called "poor man's butter" because of their high fat content, sometimes 20 percent (no cholesterol).
     
There are three distinct horticultural races of avocado and hundreds of varieties. Some of the more common varieties are:

California varieties:

ANAHEIM: (A) - large to very large - green - June to August - fair flavor - hardy to 32°F.
BACON: oval-shaped - smooth green skin - watery mild-flavored - November to March - heavy producer.
FUERTE: (B) pear-shaped - smooth green skin - mild flavor - November to June - erratic producer - hardy to 28°F.
HASS: (A) oval-shaped - thick bumpy skin emerald green to black - April to October - rich nutty flavor - alternate bearing - hardy to 28°F.
JIM: (B) small to medium - smooth green skin - very good flavor - September to January - heavy producer - hardy to 24°F.
MEXICOLA: (A) small - purple skin - very good nutty flavor - August to October - heavy producer - hardy to 18°F.
NABAL: (B) medium -  green skin - excellent flavor - June to October - erratic heavy producer - hardy to 30°F.
PINKERTON: (A) small to medium - green -  good flavor - December to April. - heavy producer - hardy to 30°F.
REED: (A) medium to large - green  - June to November -excellent flavor - hardy to 30°F.
ZUTANO: (B) pear -shaped - smooth green skin - watery mild-flavored - October to March - heavy producer - hardy to 26°F.

The (A) and (B) refer to flower type,
see page 6.

Dwarf California varieties:

GWEN: (A) similar to Hass, but smaller - Pebbly, thick green skin - excellent flavor - late winter through late summer. - darkens when mature - hardy to 30°F.
LITTLE CADO: (?) small - green May to September - good flavor - light producer - hardy to 32°F.
WHITSELL: (B) small - green March to July - excellent flavor - alternate heavy producer - hardy to 30°F.

Texas:

In the lower Rio Grande Valley, the commercial variety is LULA. LULA’S tolerance to existing soil salinity make it’s seedlings the preferred rootstock for all avocados in South Texas.
LULA: medium to large - green - thick peel - good flavor - November to February - a commercial variety - hardy to 25°F.


      There is confusion in the usage of "ripe" in regards to avocados. An avocado is "mature" when it develops a certain oil content (different with each variety). Once the oil content is developed, a harvested avocado will ripen (soften) to a firm butter consistency. At this point, the firm butter consistency, the avocado it at its palatable best. An avocado harvested before its proper oil content is developed will start to decompose into a brown gray unpalatable tasteless mass.

 

Florida varieties:

BOOTH 7: - medium to large - green - good flavor - October to December.
BROGDIN: Small to medium - green - very good flavor - November to February. - hardy to 22°F.
CHOQUETTE: Large to very large - green - good flavor - November to January - heavy producer - resists scab disease - hardy to 28°F.
GAINSVILLE: small - green - July to August - hardy to 18°F.
HALL: Large to very large - green - good flavor - November to January - heavy producer - hardy to 28°F.
LULA: medium to large - green - thick peel - good flavor - November to February - a commercial variety - hardy to 25°F.
MEXICOLA: (A) small - purple skin - very good nutty flavor - August to October - heavy producer - hardy to 18°F.
MONROE: large - green - good flavor - November to January - hardy to26°F.
POLLOCK: large to very large - green - very good flavor - July to September - light producer - resists scab disease - hardy to 62°F.
SIMMONSA: large to very large - green - very good flavor - July to September - heavy producer - resists scab disease - hardy to 62°F.
TONNAGE: medium to large - green - good flavor - September to October - hardy to 25°F.
WALDIN: medium - green - very good flavor - September to October - resists scab disease - hardy to 32°F.

Hawaii varieties:

BEARDSLEY: large - green fruit - good flavor - winter - productive.
CASE: medium to very large - green - very good flavor - winter - good producer.
CHANG: medium to large - green - very food flavor - spring - heavy producer.
FROWE: medium to large - purple - very good flavor - late fall - good producer.
GREENGOLD: medium to large - green - excellent flavor - winter to spring - heavy producer.
HAYES: medium to large - purple - very good flavor -  fall to winter light producer - susceptible to mites.
KAHALUU: medium to large - green - excellent flavor - winter to spring - good producer - susceptible to thrips and mites.
MASAMI: medium - purple, very good flavor - winter to spring - good producer.
MURASHIGE: medium to very large - green - excellent flavor - spring top summer - alternate heavy producer.
NISHIKAWA: medium to very large - green - very good flavor - winter to spring - good producer.
OHATA: large to very large - purple - very good flavor - spring to summer - light producer.
SHARWIL: small to medium - green - excellent flavor - winter to spring - alternate heavy producer.


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Selected Avocado Recipes

GUACAMOLE
 
Mashed avocado seasoned with chili and spiked with lemon or lime is perhaps the best known Mexican contribution to the culinary arts. Guacamole literally means "avocado sauce" (guaca from the Aztec ahuacatl for "testicle" and the similarly shaped fruit; and mole from Mexican-Spanish for "sauce" or “mixture").
 
  Halve, pit, and peel  
1 large soft-ripe avocado.  
  Place in a bowl; mash coarsely with a fork, blending in  
1 tablespoon lemon juice or lime juice.  
  Mix in  
1 pinch garlic powder
1 finely minced green onion (including tops) 1 teaspoon minced fresh cilantro (coriander) 6 drops liquid hot pepper seasoning
and
salt, to taste.
 

Serve with tortilla or corn chips; cold cooked shrimp; fresh vegetables sticks or cherry tomatoes.
Makes about 1 cup.

NOTE: If you have any leftover guacamole, you can preserve its good flavors and green color by puréeing it with a green lettuce leaf or two and simmering it in enough liquid to turn it into soup.

 
 

HOT GUACAMOLE SOUP
 
This is an unusual use of guacamole in a hot avocado soup.  
  Halve, peel and pit  
1 avocado.  
  Cut into quarters and put the flesh in a blender or processor. Tear  
2 large leaves romaine (or other) lettuce  
  leaves into pieces and add to blender. Add  
1/4 cup chopped green onions, with tops
1 clove garlic, mashed
2 tablespoons lime or lemon juice
1 to 2 tablespoons pure ground chili
4 sprigs fresh coriander (cilantro)
and
2 cups (of 4 cups total) chicken stock
 
  and purée until smooth. Combine with remaining stock in a pan and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes  
Serves 4.  
     
AVOCADO PINEAPPLE SALSA
 
This is an excellent compliment to fried chicken.  
  Halve, pit, peel and cube  
1 avocado.  
  In a medium-sized bowl, mix avocado with  
1 slice pineapple, chopped fine
2 teaspoons lime (or lemon) juice
 
  and  
2 pinches sugar.  
  Serve well chilled with tortilla chips or pita bread.  

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Avocados from Seed To Supper
Contents

Preface
Avocados
Varieties
Nutritional Breakdown
Cultivation
 
  Caring
Irrigation
Pests And Diseases
Harvest
Preparation
Clarification
 
Dips & Sauces  
  Guacamole
Best Basic Guacamole
Chunky Guacamole
Boiled Egg Guacamole
Horseradish Guacamole
Molded Guacamole
Avocado Shrimp Mousse
Avocado Mango Chutney
Avocado Butter
Avocado Cheese Dip
Avocado Pico
Avocado And Raisin Dip
Avocado Aioli
Red Bean And Avocado Spread
Avocado Yogurt Dip
Guacamole And Refried Bean Dip
Guacamole And Pinto Bean Torte
 
Salsa  
  Avocado Citrus Salsa
Avocado Mango Salsa
Avocado Chayote Salsa
Avocado Tomatillo Salsa
Pico De Gallo
 
Salad  
  Avocado Radish Salad
Avocado And Walnut Salad
ABC Salad
Spaghetti Squash Avocado Salad
Avocados With Red Pepper
     Sauce
Red Pepper Sauce
Avocados With Roquefort
Avocado Coleslaw
Avocado Grapefruit Salad With
      Pomegranate Dressing
Avocado Red Onion Salad With
     Tomatillo Dressing
Avocado Fuyu Persimmon Salad
Avocado Scallop Ceviche
 

Soup  
  Hot Guacamole Soup
Avocado Cream Soup
Avocado Green Chili Soup
Avocado Ginger Vichyssoise
Cold Avocado Soup
Creamed Avocado Soup
Avocado Orange Bisque
Avocado Chicken Soup
Cucumber Avocado Soup
 
Side Dishes  
  Stuffed Avocados
Avocado with Cream Cheese
     Dressing
Avocado Pilaf
Baked Potato With Avocado And
     Bacon Topping
 
Main Dishes  
  Avocado Half-shell Entrées
Avocado Nests
Avocados With Spicy Meat Filling
Rice Stuffed Avocados
Avocado Linguine
Avocado Chicken Penne
Avocado Fettuccine
Avocado Tuna Pasta Salad
Avocado-Glazed Chicken Breasts
Avocado Chicken Casserole
Avocado Pesto Cheese Loaf
Avocado Terrine
Avocado Quesadillas
Avocado Huevos Rancheros
 
Baked  
  Avocado Bread With Pecans And
     Lime Glaze
Avocado Cake
 
Dessert  
  Sugared Avocado
Avocado Lime Cream
Avocado Ice Cream
Avocado Sorbet
French Style Avocado Ice Cream
Avocado Mousse Melba
Brazilian Avocado Cream With
     Lime And Rum
Avocado Crepes
Avocado Souffle
 
Drinks  
  Avocado Shake
Avocado Honey Milk
 


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