Originally called the ‘Alligator Pear’, Californian farmers were forced to petition the government in the 1920’s to officially change the name of such a poorly selling, strange fruit. Back then Mexico was the main source of the avocado, used in their moles and as a side to many dishes for the last 10,000 years, but it really hadn’t caught on in the American market until, once again, the farmers came together in the 1970’s and made a push towards the new health food movement.
This, obviously, took off and now we regularly find ourselves enjoying the peculiar South American fruit for breakfast and lunch, crushed with chilli flakes into olive oil soaked bread. But this isn’t all it’s good for; although it doesn’t stand up to, or really even need cooking, even half an avocado blitzed and added to a soup, rich with greens and spiked with lime will not only add a certain richness but also help to thicken. It also makes a fine chocolate ‘mousse’ when whipped with a tablespoon of good cocoa and enough honey to convince it into becoming a pudding.
Finally there is, of course, guacamole. What Mexican feast would be complete without it? A fine dice of green chillies, tomatoes, plenty of coriander and lime juice and a hint of garlic stirred through a perfectly ripe hass. There is also, apparently, a worrying invention from the late 70’s made from an equal mix of guacamole and taramasalata. Try it at your own risk but perhaps some things are best left forgotten.