Monday, November 20, 2017

Awesome avocados

cami-at-vacabarAh, avocados… everybody knows they’re good for you. They’re good for blood pressure, eyes, hair masks, for pregnant ladies, and even believed to prevent cancer. Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, which is a good fat. Good fat? Can bacon be good fat? No, unfortunately not, because it’s not a nut, nor a plant oil, but pure animal. I need to stop fantasizing….
But don’t start thinking “good fat, that means I can eat all I want!”. Remember avocados are high in calories. So don’t go eating all you want. Everything, always in moderation!

Don’t worry though, I’m not turning all scientific on you guys (definitely not my style), But I wanted to make sure that before we got started on the food part, that everybody is aware of the benefits of avocado, and on how amazing this fruit is. And yes, it is a fruit not a vegetable. I mean, everybody kinda’ knows that.

Here in the Dominican Republic, we are very lucky because we have avocados almost all year round. You might be thinking, yeah but everywhere, no? Yes, true… but because the Dominican Republic produces such a big amount of avocados, we always get them directly from the source, which makes a huge difference. Instead of getting them unripe in a box sent from Mexico and ending up on a super market shelf, we buy them fresh and ripe from the back of a typical fruit truck or stand. Just make sure you speak some Dominican, or they might rip you off. Haha.


So what can go wrong? Absolutely nothing. It’s paradise. Any time it’s you and avocado baby! You can mix up a nice avocado with fruits for your smoothie in the morning, or slice it up on top of your salad for lunch, or cut it up in cubes mixing it with your rice and beans (Dominican style). In the Dominican Republic you eat it on top of everything. And if it’s not mixed or mashed with other ingredients, then they have it as salad with lots of white vinegar and red onions. So refreshing!! For breakfast: “huevo hervido con aguacate". simple and yummy! boiled eggs and avocado. And don’t forget the lime. Limes, just like avocados grow in huge amounts here. And, in my opinion you can’t eat avocado without lime.


On those rare occasions when there is not much to eat in my house (really rare), I always have limes, and avocados lying around… among other things. And that’s the best last resort snack you can come up with. Don’t even bother with a plate. Just slice up the avocado in half, pop out the seed, throw on some salt and crushed pepper, squish a whole lime in one half, and with a fork poke at it and mix it all up. Boom! healthy, fast, and no cleaning up snack. And if you have some fresh coriander, sprinkle on top. But we said last resort, so let’s not get carried away. And remember, if you can’t eat the other half, just keep it with the seed wrapped tightly with paper film. The seed will kind of help prevent the avocado from turning brownish.

So for a more complex elaboration and the choice of my recipe with avocado, today I share with you the Awesome Bowl. You might have never heard of it unless you’ve had lunch at Vacabar. It’s a simple and delicious recipe I came up with, and because I'm good with ingredients and not with names, I just took the adjective that best describes it when I had to name the dish. Awesome!

big bowl to mix in.
a small sauce pan to boil water
a cutting board
slotted spoon
food processor
little bowl with water and 3 ice cubes.

For the pesto:
50g pine nuts slightly toasted. substitute for Cabarete people: local almonds!
80g basil
50g parmesan cheese
150 ml olive oil
2 garlic cloves
fresh crushed pepper

Ingredients pesto

For the Awesome Bowl
1 egg
1 small ripe avocado
1 big round juicy tomato
1/2 of a red peeled onion
2 table spoons of olive oil
a splash of vinegar
Ingredients Awesome Bowl

1.    First put your small pot of water to boil, with that splash of vinegar inside.

Awesome bowl - step 1

2.    While its boiling, put the pine nuts in a food processor, together with the basil, Parmesan, olive oil, garlic cloves, and the fresh pepper. Process until smooth. If you don’t have a food processor, use a blender. Now, that’s a lot of pesto. But you can keep it for almost a week. So get all “pestoish” in your recipes.

Making pesto

3.    The water should be boiling by now, so break your egg and dump the contents in the water. It’s back to lesson number one: poaching that egg. Yeah! Although here it’s easier, because when that one egg is ready, you scoop it out with the slotted spoon and transfer it to the little bowl with ice, and you need not worry about it breaking. As it cools down, it’ll be more manageable.

Poached egg for the awesome bowl

4.    While the cooling down is happening, chop your avocado and tomato into cubes, along with the onions in even smaller little cubes. That cut is called brunoise. (Yes, we have names for different types of cuts and thickness.) Mix it all up with the olive oil and some seasoning.

Awesome bowl in the making
Awesome bowl in the makingAwesome bowl in the making
5.    Take out the finest bowl you have, even if it’s the cereal bowl or the dog bowl, and prepare yourself to turn it into an Amazing bowl!

Voila - one Awesome Bowl

6.    Add the avocado and tomato mix, then with your hands gently scoop out the poached egg and place it on top, and finally drizzle the pesto all over the egg, down to the bottom on the bowl.
Awesome delicious bowl
It’s healthy, it’s refreshing, it’s amazing!

Photos by Cami Cow – copyright 2015 






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