Selecting the Perfect Avocado

Selecting the Perfect Avocado

Frustrated with an unripe avocado when it’s time for guacamole? Read on to learn how to select the perfectly ripe avocado and how to use it.

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I love avocados, delicious and healthy. You can slice them over toast, make guacamole, hide it in children’s recipes for a nutritious bump, there are many ways to use avocados in your diet. Choosing the right avocado at the perfect time though isn’t always easy.

Be sure to read on for recipes that I love for delicious avocados. Read more HERE about the health benefits of avocado!

The perfect avocado

Photo by Charles Deluvio 🇵🇭🇨🇦 on Unsplash

The perfect fruit

Avocados are nutrient dense and help your body better absorb fat soluble nutrients in the other foods you eat. There are many ways you can incorporate them into your diet. Start by replacing other spreads on toast and spread avocado instead.

Let’s get right to it and learn about avocado selection. First, you will need to decide when you need the avocado to be ripe. Are you shopping for avocados for tonight’s dinner or for later in the week? Timing is important. Planning meals is a great way to be organized.

Avocado skin

Choosing a ripe avocado

Photo by Rose Elena on Unsplash

There are a few different things to observe when choosing your fruit. As you look over the avocados in the bin at the grocery store, notice the color differences in the skin. Some avocados have a bright green skin, some look more brown to black.

If you need an avocado for tonight or tomorrow, you will want to look towards the darker skinned fruit. The bright green avocado still needs a few days to ripen at room temperature.

The squeeze

Delicious and nutrient dense avocados

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

Now you want to take the avocado into the palm of your hand and wrap your fingers around it. Be sure not to press your fingertips into the fruit, you could bruise it. Now give a gentle squeeze and see if it gives under gentle pressure from your hand.

If it’s firm and has no “give” when gently squeezed it is unripe. This avocado will need 4-5 days on the kitchen counter to ripen at room temperature. Choose this avocado if you need it later in the week.

When squeezing gently, your avocado yields to that pressure, it’s ready to cut and eat. Choose this avocado for tonight or tomorrow.

If you gently squeeze and feel a squish or it yields very easily, it is likely overripe and you do not want it. Place this one in the back or out of the way so that you don’t select it again.


Photo by Joseph Gonzalez on Unsplash
How to boil perfect eggs go here

Speed up the ripening process

I’ve been at the grocery store looking for avocado for tonight’s dinner only to find a bunch of rock hard fruit. Ugh, this is frustrating. There is really nothing you can do in a few hours to ripen the avocado. I have been desperate before and put it in the food processor.

This was effective to get it smooth and creamy, but the taste was off. I can’t describe it to you, but it tasted unripe. Maybe it was because I knew it wasn’t ripe yet, but who knows. I don’t recommend it.

To speed up the process you can place your avocado in a paper bag with an apple or banana. The gases that these two fruits put off aids in the ripening process. Have you ever put a banana in a lunch box and 4 hours later it’s brown? This is why that happens.


Photo by Ruth Reyer on Unsplash

Slow down the ripening process

This time you are in the grocery store and all of the fruits are ripe! Awesome! Despite the fact that this rarely happens to me, they are either always hard as rocks or mush. Let’s just play along.

The problem is that you need them for a meal two days from now and you know they will be mush by then. Take the ripe avocados and put them in the refrigerator. This will slow the process down and give you a couple days to use them.

sliced ripe avocado

Photo by Charles Deluvio 🇵🇭🇨🇦 on Unsplash

You found the perfect avocado, here is what you do with it

I try to put avocados in different recipes to experiment with replacing unhealthier fat options. I love this healthy little fruit.

Try to make guacamole from scratch without a mix or powder. It’s super easy, healthy, and versatile. Here is a great recipe for everyone from beginner to advanced.

Fresh Guacamole

Chopped avocado for guacamole

Photo by Alison Marras on Unsplash

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 2 Tbsp. lemon or lime juice (I prefer lime)
  • 1 Roma tomato (diced)
  • 1/2 red onion (medium) (chopped fine & rinsed)
  • Small bunch of cilantro leaves (chopped fine) (optional)
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • Dash of salt
  • Dash of black pepper

Mash your avocados in a bowl. Add cayenne, salt, pepper, cilantro and lime juice. Stir and mash until it is the consistency that you prefer chunky vs. smooth. Add in the onions and tomato and stir.

Sometimes I leave out the onions, depending on what I have on hand. I personally never use cilantro because I usually forget it. The core ingredients of tomato, avocado, lime juice are essential though, in my opinion.

Portobello Mushroom and Avocado Pita

Avocado and sprouts pita sandwich

Photo by Alexandra Golovac on Unsplash
Recipe below

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe avocado sliced
  • 1 portobello mushroom sliced thin
  • alfalfa sprouts
  • lettuce of your choice or kale
  • pita bread round sliced in half

Open your pita bread and place a slice of the portobello mushroom and the slices of avocado. Around it you can push in the lettuce and spouts. You might even add a tomato if you are feeling it. I would definitely sprinkle lime juice on my avocado. Not only does this keep it from turning brown, I love the taste!

Avocado toast

Avocado on toast with cappuccino

Photo by Le Buzz on Unsplash
Recipe below

Ingredients

  • Toast – try an hearty whole grain
  • 1 ripe avocado sliced
  • Toppings: thinly sliced radishes, green onions, alfalfa sprouts, tomatoes, lime juice, cayenne pepper, cilantro, salmon

Toast your bread and add sliced avocado to cover. Sprinkle lime juice over the avocado if desired, it also keeps it from turning brown. Add your toppings and get crazy with it. Try new toppings or create your own combinations.

Eat with a fork and knife. Voila.

I truly hope you have enjoyed this post. Please head over to the Cooking Section to find more cooking tips and recipes. Happy Cooking!

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