Avocados are one of the most versatile ingredients that you can have in your kitchen no matter what time of year. These little green fruits can be used at any meal of the day: breakfast, brunch, lunch, snack time and even dinner. One of the most important tips that I can give you about avocados is about purchasing the perfect one.
When you are at the store looking for the perfect avocado, remember these simple tips. If you are going to be using the avocados immediately you should be looking for a slight give when you press your thumb into the avocado. You do not want them to be to squishy, or they will be likely be brown/bruised. If you are buying the avocados in advance, you can get the firm avocados because they will ripen over the next couple of days. Having them ripen at home will allow you the opportunity to have the most beautiful and perfectly ripe avocados. If the avocados you purchased are still not as ripe as you would like, you may place them in a brown paper bag with a ripe banana. This will allow the avocados to ripen much faster because of the gases that the ripe bananas release as they continually ripen. I would try to do this a night in advance of when you want to use the avocado.
Avocados are an essential ingredient to keep around your kitchen especially when it comes to foods that are beneficial for your vision health. Avocados have an incredibly high amount of lutein inside of each fruit. A diet rich in lutein can help prevent the loss of vision due to daily stress (UV Rays), and the general aging of the eye. Unfortunately our bodies do not naturally reproduce this antioxidant, but a diet rich in this compound will keep your ocular vision in check for years to come.
Grilled Avocados with Cilantro Oil, Feta Cheese, and Red Onion
- 2 avocados, halved and seeded
- 2 cups extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large bunch cilantro
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed
- ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
- Feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 small red onion, sliced very thin
- Heat oil to a medium heat in a small sauceboat. NOTE: Do not heat too much or the herbs will burn, resulting in a brown oil. Add smashed garlic cloves and entire bunch of cilantro. Ensure that all herbs are covered in oil while stirring them occasionally. Let oil rest at least an hour. Strain all herbs and pour oil into a sealable mason jar. Oil will keep indefinitely as long as all free-floating particles were removed.
- Heat grill or grill pan to a very hot temperature. Ensure that all grates are clean (this will prevent anything from getting stuck to the pan). You should see slight smoke coming from either pan or grill grates. Once this is achieved, lightly spray with non-stick spray.
- Season cut sides of avocado with salt and pepper before grilling. Place avocado flesh-side down and cook for 1 minute. Quarter turn the avocados to get beautiful grill marks and cook again for 1 more minute. This should be a fast process to heat avocados and char on one side. Remove avocados from grill and place on a large platter.
- While still warm, drizzle a considerable amount of cilantro oil over the avocados, crumble feta cheese on top, and garnish with sliced red onions. You may also top with more chopped cilantro for added color and flavor.