Friday, November 20, 2009

Weekend Herb Blogging - Avocado

I am submitting this recipe into this weeks Weekend Herb Blogging#210. This week event will be hosted by Winnie from Healthy Green Kitchen. WHB is a weekly food blog event that showcases information and recipes about herbs, vegetables, fruits and other plant ingredients. WHB is now organized by Haalo of Cook(almost)AnythingAtLeastOnce. It is such a informative ingredient blogging event, and the Pancakes decided to submit a first time entry and hope that this will be selected. *keeping fingers crossed.*

Anyway, let's begin.  Mr Pancakes had always been fascinated by the fruit avocado.  It's velvety taste and strange looking skin had intrigued Mr Pancakes since young. As it is expensive (SGD1.65 for a fruit), Mr Pancakes hardly has the chance to really taste it.... until he's 20.

The avocado is also widely known as the alligator pear. It is grown from the fast growing Persea Americana tree. Avocados can contain as much as 20% fat (Haas variant), of which is largely monounsaturated, including oleic acid and linoleic acid.  They are also an excellent source of potassium, vitamins B and E. 

Gentle pressure should depress ripe avocados slightly.  Do not select over-ripe avocados as they have brown, mushy meat and taste weird.  Allow avocados to ripen (18 to 24°C) and they can be kept in refrigerators for up to a week, if it has not been sliced.  The skin darkens as the fruit ripens.  Avocados sell at a range of SGD 1.30 to SGD 2, depending on the season. Peak season is typically in December.  *DO NOT try to eat unripe avocados. They taste bitter and leave a horrid aftertaste in your mouth, tongue AND throat.

Avocados contain enzymes that encourage oxidation, thus they tend to brown when exposed to air.  Sprinkle with a little lemon juice or vinegar to slow the browning process.  

To prepare, use a stainless steel kitchen knife to cut the fruit lengthwise.  Gently twist the two halves in opposite directions. (It is like opening a bottle cap.)  The seed can be easily removed with a spoon.  Using the tip of the knife, go between the fruit and the skin, separating the flesh from the skin. Use a spoon to slide along the inside of the skin if the flesh is too soft to be cut.

Avocados can be consumed on their own, as shakes, in sandwiches and most popularly in the preparation of guacamole. And Mr Pancakes shares here his favourite milkshake of all time, The Avocado Shake.

You will need: (Serves 4)
2 ripe avocados
     300 ml cold milk (coconut milk[1], evaporated milk will do too.)
·    50 grams gula Melaka[2] (molasses or honey are adequate substitutes.)
·    2 tablespoons of hot water

1.    Grate and dissolve the gula Melaka in the hot water.  Leave aside to cool. (You can do this the night before. The syrup can be kept for several days when stored in a dry, clean air-tight jar.

2.       Remove skin and pit of avocados.  Blend with 200ml of milk.
3.       Add half of gula Melaka syrup. Continue to blend until smooth.  Top up with milk to achieve desired consistency.
4.       In a tall glass or martini glass, pour some gula Melaka syrup to form a thin layer.
5.       Top glass with blended avocado.
6.       Drizzle with remaining syrup and serve.

*This avocado milkshake tastes best when serve chilled.  Do NOT over-blend. Blending heats up your concoction.  Add ice-cubes if you desire, bearing in mind it will thin the drink as the ice melts.

[1] Coconut milk gives a very fragrant taste to the drink.  But do take note of the fat content.  Add evaporated milk for a creamier version.
[2] Commonly known as ‘Palm Sugar’, is made from sugary sap of cut flower buds.

Pairing:  Avocados generally go well with nuts as a snack.  Serve with citrus fruits like orange and kiwi to balance the oily content of the fruit.  Roasted chicken, bacon and ham taste great with avocado slices in sandwiches.  Herbs like lemon balm and basil lift the taste of avocados while milk chocolate and fine creamy cheese like Gruyere pair well with avocados as an after-dinner treat.


  1. Very interesting! I love avocados but haven't ever used them like this. They're expensive here too, usually at least $1.00 USD each, although once in a while they go on sale.

    I've never heard about gula Melaka. Going to google it now to see just what that is.

  2. Ah, palm sugar is what we call gula Melaka here! Thanks, I love learning something new.

  3. Kalyn, thanks for visiting! :) oh yah. thanks for reminding me, should have included the namesake (palm sugar) in my post.

    avocados at USD1 (SGD1.39), it is cheaper than what they sell for in Singapore. And we only have the Haas variety. Enjoy this milk shake. Cheers


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