Good food part one – Avocados

Last night, while watching the season finale of Lost, Big-P and I shared a bag of Natural Confectionery Company jelly snakes. Absolutely delicious and how bad can they be? They are all natural! Later – much later – that night, I lay in bed with my mind racing and my heart beating at a bazillion miles a minute. The sugar high took me into the wee hours, and as a result, today I am feeling slug like and overly emotional. There’s a hole in the sleeve of my favourite tshirt and it’s making me very, very sad.
Anyway, on the topic of food. I once heard that Loobylu is far too concerned with the ‘right things’ to eat. Yes, I am concerned but it doesn’t stop me from discovering my shopping basket is full of delicious, nasty morsels when I go shopping on an empty stomach. But I do try. Mostly.

A couple of weeks ago, the Sunday Life magazine ran a two page article titled “The 20 Healthiest Foods you can Eat” by health-food guru Rosemary Stanton. I tore it out and have it hanging on my fridge door. It’s a list that reassures me that most days we are doing pretty well. Some things rarely, if ever, get a look in, like oysters (wouldn’t know where to begin) and oranges (just, for some reason, not on my radar), but as a special “back to life-blogging” feature, I thought I might occasionally take an item from the list and write something about it. If you feel so inclined, leave your relevant recipes or links to your blog and recipes in the comments and we should get a really got collection of ways to eat the 20 Healthiest Foods.

Number 1 on the list is Avocado.

“This is one of the few fruits that contain fat but it’s the good unsaturated kind that helps us absorb the vitamin E in avocados. Half an avocado gives you almost 50 per cent of the recommended dietary intake (RDI) of vitamin E. As a bonus, you also get a good source of vitamin B6 and pantothenic acid (another B vitamin). Tip: Use avocado as a spread; it has a quarter of the fat of butter and margarine.” – R Stanton, Sunday Life

While throwing my fruit and veg into a trolley each Saturday, I mostly avoid the avocados due to the high prices, but when they are in season, I love making this guacamole which has its origins in a Moosewood Cookbook recipe.

Guacamole

juice of half lemon or whole lime
flesh of 1 large avocado
1 small clove of garlic minced
1/2 teaspoon of cumin
small piece of Lebanese cucumber finely sliced
small piece of red capsicum (pepper) finely sliced
2 big spoonfuls of mayonnaise (or to taste).

Squish the avocado flesh into a lumpy mush to your liking along with the lemon/lime juice. Add the minced garlic and cumin and mix well. Stir in mayonnaise thoroughly and gently stir through cucumber and capsicum. Serve with raw vegetables or corn chips for dipping. Also good in sandwiches and on toast.

So while the mayonnaise probably takes this into the realm of unhealthy this is pretty delicious. I have found that the more commercial the mayonnaise, the better it is. If you really want to keep it healthy, leave out the mayonnaise all together and it’s still yummy.

Ps. the illustration is a lie. Amelia actually won’t go near dip of any kind let alone green lumpy stuff.

41 Responses to “Good food part one – Avocados”

  1. llama@llamapaloodle.com

    I’m glad to hear avocado is #1 on the list, seeing as I eat it everyday! (not a whole one mind you..) I’m also interested to know what you think about your Moosewood cookbook. I’ve been wanting one for ages but can’t decide which one to get. And yes, I am a cheapskate so getting more than one is out of the question… hehe

  2. martyandrach@optusnet.com.au

    I love the Moosewood cookbook. I don’t have it, but I had my hands on it once and didn’t buy it, have been kicking myself ever since! Anyway I love avacado’s and even buy them when they are sooo expensive out of season, and savour them bit by bit!( my fav, on English muffin with salt and pepper and melted cheese…)I missed Lost, (bloody cricket) and read the official site but it didn’t give much away. What was in the hatch? (sorry everyone)

  3. dohmwood@bigpond.net.au

    firstly: great post loobylu!!!
    sounds like an excellent guacamole recipe-thanks.

    50 cents in qld – i’m moving. but really it doesn’t matter how much they cost they are necessary in my family and still feel like i’m having a treat everytime. using it as a butter substitute is a must. and tastes better too.

  4. sanneke@wanadoo.nl

    One of Anna’s first baby foods was: half a banana pureed with avocado — she’d have eaten it every day if she could! A year later she eats anything you set before her, except avocado 🙂 I’m sure it’s a phase…

  5. valentina@somebox.com

    I LOVE avocado. Since I’m pregnant, I’ve been asking for it in everything, particularly in lunch sandwiches. It makes me feel better about my lunch!

  6. lee.taylor@boursedata.com.au

    I LOVE avocado. A reasonably light and delcious short order pasta sauce is to stir fry two finely sliced garlic cloves for 30 seconds or until fragrant, and add two tablespoons lemon juice, 2 mashed avocados, and a few tablespoons of light sour cream and cook genty for a couple of minutes to warm through, then toss 300 – 400g of spaghetti through it.. Add chicken breast, sundried tomato, mushroom etc if desired or just have it as is! Quesadillas (not sure of my spelling) are quick and easy and delicious too – put some off the shelf tomato salsa and grated cheese in between two fajita tortillas and pan fry with a little oil spray, then serve with your guacomole or fresh avocado. How yum. And of course avocado is delicious just sprinkled with a little salt and spread on toast. Why don’t I eat it more!! Can’t wait to hear what the other 19 foods are, I’m sorry I missed the article!

  7. ceratium@hotmail.com

    My favorite guacomole is a very basic one where you mash together one ripe avocado with a bit of cumin, salt, fresh cilantro, juice of a lime and a diced plum tomato (even better if you peel it). If I’m in a rush I use only the avocado salt and lime.
    Grandma used to stuff them with shrimp salad- cooked shrimp, a little mayo and some diced celery, pinch of salt and pepper.

    As a treat she’d cut one in half, drizzle it with lemon juice and hand it to me with a spoon. Doesn’t get much easier than that!

  8. greenjellysnakes@gmail.com

    I love guacamole! I usually just throw together one mashed avocado, a squeeze of fresh lime juice, couple of cloves of garlic, some diced red onion, diced tomato and a handful of fresh coriander leaves. Blend it so that it’s somewhere between chunky and smooth. So very, very good spread on toast for lunch.

  9. mogsblog@hotmail.com

    So tell me….what did you think about Lost’s SEASON FINALE….the one that would answer all those questions….and lead slowly ever slowly onto the next slow season? It’s like a train wreck that show….I have to keep watching in case something ever happens and I miss it. Oppps. Sorry – I guess that’s what I thought about it. Sorry to hog your posting.

  10. sue@Noodlebowl.net

    Heh, I read that too. I love avocado. My guacamole recipe includes 2 crushed cloves of garlic, salt and pepper, juice of 1 lemon or lime and 1/2 a roughly chopped tomato. I like the chunky consistency of using a potato masher.
    Lovely to see you back =)

  11. 1000hats@optonline.net

    You got to leave out the mayonnaise, as a native Californian guacamole is high on my list of favs! Great idea for subject, I look forward to more.

  12. nikkishell@gmail.com

    Ooh, more food blogging! Unfortunately all my food blogging is the unhealthy type, maybe i should take a leaf out of your book and slip in a few healthy options now and then.

  13. lynda@creativecopy.com.au

    How can you be far too concerned with the ‘right things’ to eat? (She asked, with a mad zealot’s gleam in her eye).
    Seriously, don’t go changing. It stands to reason that a young mother would want to eat well and educate her children to eat well too.

  14. blythestrinkets@optusnet.com.au

    Rosemary Stanton drives me nuts. There’s no other way about it…she’s just so…perfect. I know I’m so jealous, but she makes me want to eat chips and icecream and cake all day long.
    Avocados are 50c here in sunny QLD at the moment.

  15. dearintint@gmail.com

    It felt good to read that article, because I enjoy everything on the list, except broccoli. My mother, like a lot of other little old Chinese ladies uses avocado as a substitute for butter, and you can whack heaps more avocado on bread than you would butter, without fear of having daily heart attacks.

  16. dashagain@aol.com

    My boyfriend and I live in California and he makes a delicious guacamole with: 2 avocados, 2 T minced onion, 2 T olive oil, juice of 1/2 lemon and 1/2 t of salt. It’s a great base–you can add tomatoes, jalapenos, garlic, etc. to suit your tastes. The olive oil might work as a good substitute for the mayo in your recipe–it lends richness but is healthier. I’ve never heard of putting mayo in guacamole! Must be an Aussie thing. 🙂

  17. sigh.figh@gmail.com

    I just have to butt in that the most astonishing way to eat an avocado is to slice it in half, remove the pit, salt it, grab a spoon and eat it. In addition to being nutritious, its high protein content makes it an ideal midday snack — protein is what your body requires to send a signal to your brain that you are NO LONGER HUNGRY, meaning that (contrary to most diets) naturally fatty and protein-rich foods such as peanuts, greasy fish and avocados are more likely to satisfy you in a smaller quantity. Just for the record, sugar is what triggers your brain into producing chemicals that signal its TIME TO EAT. So eating desserty foods as a snack (sweetened yogurt, fruit, cereal bars and other often-encouraged “snack foods”) may worsen the resolve of an oft-hungry person. Avocado!

  18. lucyfeagins@yahoo.com.au

    mmm yes I remember reading that article very thoroughly and being surprisingly pleased that most of the things were things I also eat a lot of… avocado, chickpeas and such. Broccoli not so much… do you think Broccolini counts? It is so much nicer!
    Thanks for the lovely ‘daily-life’ type of blog entry… I struggle to keep up with the craft blogging too… xx

  19. thexfacta@hotmail.com

    ah, the famous moosewood cookbookits full of such treasures

    was out for dinner with friends who have an 18 mth old and she is into dips in a big way. Everything gets dipped – she loves all sorts of food – from olives to capsicum, the most amazingly developed tastebuds for a tiny tot I’ve ever seen.

  20. plumulberry@yahoodot.co.uk

    Oh Claire, I ate a packet of the sour NCC snakes today – the ones covered in sugar (even though of course they are very very natural!). Does that make you feel better?

  21. reidfamily@pacific.net.au

    Nothing better than avocado spread thickly on wholemeal toast while it is pipping hot with cracked black pepper and salt. And in summer when they are “real” and very ripe, a couple of slices of tomato on top goes down a treat too. Hmm….

  22. seejaneblog@yahoo.com

    Avocado was one of the first foods my babies ate. They both loved it! Mommy, too.
    Depending upon the size of the hole in your shirt, I have an almost invisible fix method. Please pop me an email if you’d like me to describe it to you.

  23. paige@earthlink.net

    Avocados rule. And guacomole rules too.Though, I’ve never ever tasted it with Mayo. Definitely not how we serve it in California. Personally, I don’t think it is at all necessary!! Here, we might just smash it together with onion, tomato, cilantro, garlic and lime juice. Sometimes I just cheat and add to fresh salsa made from the market. Unfortunately, guac goes so well with nice greasy/ salty tortilla chips. Will have to try it on toast tho.

    On another note, I’m just now catching up on “Lost”. It’s on summer reruns here. And I’m lovin’ it.

  24. buzzville@earthlink.net

    That’s so funny that Amelia doesn’t like dip… Brynne absolutely wants to dip everything!
    Our neighbors have a huge avocado tree that overhangs our yard, so we get all the free avocados we can handle. I mix the avocado with lime juice, tomatoes, onions, cilantro (lots of it!), and salt and pepper to taste. Yum!

  25. thegirl@54monkeys.com

    bacon, lettuce, tomato, and avocado sandwiches! mmm….

  26. kristin@magnificentbliss.com

    My favorite is an avocado sandwich. This recipe makes two sandwiches.
    -1 mashed avocado
    -sprinkle of salt and fresh ground pepper
    -1 cucumber thinly sliced
    -A few thin slices of reduced fat cheddar cheese
    -mustard and mayo if desired
    -1 tomato sliced (preferably a tomato that is firm such as a roma tomatoe)
    -4 slices of good bread, I love using sundried tomato bread
    -sprouts (if desired)

    Mash the avocado in bowl. Add just a tiny tiny bit of salt and some fresh ground pepper. Add mustard or mayo to the bread if desired. Smear half of the smooshed avocado on one slice of bread, then the remaining avocado on the second slice of bread. Top with the thin slices of cucumber, followed by the tomato, cheese, then sprouts. Add the other slice of bread on top. If I have them, I sometimes add pepperoncinis. I usually side the sandwich with a fruit salad.

  27. foodiechickie@yahoo.com

    I have a similar list hanging on my fridge door from a NY Times article remding me I am doing ok and not to beat myself about when I am tempted to eat those “nasty” foods. I also have one about the best oatmeals. Mmm!

  28. denise@centrs.com

    i love avocado just sliced, drowned in lemon juice and with a light sprinkling of sea salt. I live in San Francisco and at the markets you can buy tiny little avocados 4 for $1.00. They are just the right size for one person.
    Could someone post a link or the whole list of foods from that article?

  29. cat16@mindspring.com

    I make a cheese omlette, top it with salsa and a glob of guacamole for a yummy breakfast or light lunch.

  30. kimrees72@hotmail.com

    I’m with you Karyn – Rosemary Stanton is a bit too whole-meal washed out looking, but the Sunday Life article was fab. We’re going through a berry phase at the mometn (Hmmm…..maybe the crumble top and whipped cream isn’t so healthy..) So nice to have Loobylu back! And sweet chilli sauce is my special guacamole ingredient…….

  31. js_fox@hotmail.com

    Hi! Lovely to see you posting, and I love the non-crafty stuff too. It was a post about you tearing your hair out with Amelia, and why you wouldn’t have it any other way that first led me here and made me want to stay :). I’d also love a copy of that article if there is a link, or it is possible to scan it in and post it up?
    Thanks 🙂

  32. nancy.murphy@gmail.com

    my favorite (besides the yummy guac) is a french bread sandwich. Wherein I melt a little sharp cheddar on a crusty french loaf under the broiler and then top with thin sliced avocado, tomato, baby spinach leaves (or other greens) and clover sprouts and sometimes red onion slices. I love this sandwich. the key is really fresh everything and find some incredible bread, but it is also good on multigrain slices.

  33. leopardtuxedo@yahoo.com

    The recipe for my family’s ‘Kitchen Sink Guac’ aka ‘Guac-A-Mole’ (for the fans of Whack A Mole): Avocadoes, lemon juice and whatever else you may find in the fridge and the cupboards. Hence the name Kitchen Sink Guac (everything but the kitchen sink). Lemon is the only essential. You will be disinherited if you don’t use lemon.

  34. sashwee@hotmail.com

    I didn’t think the happy guacamole eater in the picture was A.J. I thought it was Loobylu!

  35. kricketson@gmail.com

    avocado is great mashed with lemon and pepper on toast. But the other day while eating at a fancy chinese restaurant i had an unusual dish – chicken in coconut milk with banana, avocado and lai chi, and then malibu (liquor) poured over it. it was fabulous and the warm chunks of fruit and avocado throughout made it quite an adventure.

  36. ljdoh@pipeline.com.au

    You mentioned oranges as one of the healthy items listed by Rosemary Stanton that rarely get a look in in your household.Just thought I’d mention that the beautiful juicy navels around at the moment have become my 15year old son’s favourite breakfast item. I also make him an egg and bacon muffin or such like, but I am so pleased he is requesting the oranges also. I figure that this is a bonus to actually get some fruit in his diet without me forcing the issue!

  37. kylie@gusset.net

    mmmmmm.the moosewood low fat cookbook has a whole host of avocado things – one is a standard kinda guac. but instead of mayo or sour cream, whack in cottage cheese – yes, you’ll need a food processor, but you get a very groovy light green, and with a smidge of garlic, you can’t really tell it’s cottage cheese.
    then these avo + kidney beans + salsa.
    lately i’ve just been a sucker for avo on sakata black sesame + soy rice crackers.
    something else i’ve been meaning to try is more of a raw food thing – avocado soup – it varies a little, but basically it’s avo’s, lemon, cucumber, perhaps capsicum, chilli or tomato, depending on the recipe. sounds good though….

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