Farm Fresh Pick of the Week: Avocado

Friday, March 16, 2012 10:51

San Diego’s Signature Crop

by: Casey Pukl

If you’re native to San Diego, this fact may not shock you, but 95% of the United States’ avocados are grown in Southern California. However, what’s even more impressive about that is that 60% of that is grown right here in San Diego county!

Avocados are wonderful for both sweet and savory dishes. From guacamole to milkshakes (yes, you read that right), different countries throughout the world have found their perfect use for this fatty fruit. In Indonesia, avocados are blended with milk, sugar, ice, and chocolate syrup to make a sweet dessert shake. Here in California, ordering anything “California” style pretty much guarantees the presence of avocado. Trust me, that’s a beautiful thing. Not only is the avocado delicious, but it’s also packed with Omega 3′s, potassium (they actually contain 35% more potassium than bananas), and B vitamins. Consumption of this wonder-fruit has also been shown to reduce cholesterol levels, so be sure to dig into this week’s recipe! It’ll be good for not only your heart but your taste buds as well!

Sous Chef Kristen Williams and beverage manager Marc Canzoneri have come up with two unique recipes to highlight this mild flavored fruit’s strengths. Read on to learn more!

Dungeness Crab Cake with Ginger-Avocado Sauce and Marinated Coconut

This dish is a fabulous marriage of flavors. It has a hint of spice, a bit of sweetness, and the fresh taste of ginger balances the whole thing. Best of all, it’s super simple to make and on special this weekend, so come on in and try it!

To make it at home, first you’ll want to shave some fresh coconut into thin slices. You can do this on a mandolin, or very carefully with a knife. Marinate the coconut slices in fresh squeezed lime juice and chili powder for an hour or two.

While the coconut is marinating, you can form your crab cake. Here at Anthology, our Dungeness Crab Cake (which is also featured on our brunch menu in a fabulous benedict) is a very basic recipe that uses crab, carrots, celery, onions, and a little bit of mayonnaise. Feel free to have fun with it and add peppers, radishes, and whatever else you’d like!

Next, you’ll want to move onto the ginger-avocado sauce. Scoop the avocado out of the skin, and put into a blender. Grate some fresh ginger into the blender as well (about 1 tablespoon should be plenty— you can adjust to your liking). Add fresh squeezed lemon juice, salt, and pepper, and puree until smooth.

Plate the avocado puree on the bottom, place the crab cake in the center, top with marinated coconut and mixed greens, and you’re done!

The Avocado Margarita
Creator: Marc Canzoneri

Triple Sec
Avocado Puree
Fresh Lime Juice
Jalapeno Simple Syrup

Instructions: Pour all ingredients into blender with ice and blend until smooth. Dip the rim of the glass into a thin dish of water, then dip in a mixture of cayenne pepper and salt. Pour margarita into glass, garnish with cilantro.

This drink is smooth, creamy, sweet, and spicy. It’s a flavor explosion! It’s also pretty filling, so pair it with a light salad or even use it as a dessert! If you’re a fan of Mexican cuisine, think of this drink as a liquid substitute for your happy hour margarita, chips, and guacamole.