Simple Yet Very Effective Storage Technique for Avocados
A favorite of many people, avocados are a key ingredient in most plant-based kitchens. Omnivores and veggie eater alike cherish this rich, creamy fruit eaten alone and in many dishes! However, some of the time when using them, we use only half of an avocado. So, you are left with the conundrum of how to best maintain the other half for future use. Most of the ways to store it result it much of the precious turning brown and/or even more tragically going bad altogether. This is indeed sad because avocados are so yummy and are not cheap! Well, now the wide-mouth Mason jar can come to your rescue. Once I started doing this with avocados, my vegan food prep life was transformed!
I use Mason jars almost every day in some capacity. My favorite ones are the wide-mouth 16-oz jars. And as it tuns out, these are the best for the avocado trick. (I’ve going to explain this in terms of chemistry because I am a chemist by training and just can’t help myself – feel free to ignore!)
Placing the freshly sliced avocado in the 16-oz wide mouth Mason jar that is sealed immediately significantly limits the amount of air (and notably the amount of oxygen) that comes into contact with exposed surface on the avo from the cut. When this is done, very little oxidation will occur and so remaining half the fruit then ripens or ‘goes bad’ at a very slow rate. The whole pit (still in the half) must also remain in the half of the avocado as this too – it helps to retard spoilage. I’ve often kept half of a beautiful avocado in a Mason jar “cocoon” for a week and when finally removed, the avocado looks and tastes nearly as fresh as the day I first used it! I use this trick for all (Haas) avocados (they fit nicely in the jars). Best. Avocado Hack. Ever.
Two Varieties of Avocados Are Distinguishable by their Skins
Usually referred to as California avocados, Hass avocados are the ones with the dark, pebbly skins. The second variety of this fruit with the smooth, green skin is the Florida avocado. The two kinds of avocados differ a bit in taste (personal preferences) but more importantly in the amount of fat. One cup of Florida avocado has 276 calories and 23 grams of fat while one cup of Hass avocado has 384 calories and 35 grams of fat. And yes, despite their green creaminess, the avocado is indeed a fruit – technically a fleshy, single-seed berry. As the Florida avocados are much larger than their cousins from the West, they are unfortunately not suitable for storage in a 16-oz Mason jar.
Avocados (all kinds) contain significant nutrition. They are loaded with fiber, and are a significant source of vitamin K, folate, vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), vitamin B6, vitamin C and twice the potassium of a banana. They will add some “healthy” fat to your diet and help you to feel satisfied. The fat in avocados is monounsaturated, which most agree does not raise cholesterol and increase your risk of heart disease. However, even with all their benefits, it is however important not to overdo it with avocados!
And thanks to their thick skin, pesticides don’t often make their wait into the flesh so it is not necessary to buy them organic.
Awesome Recipes With Avocado
Here are few of my favorite recipes with avocado. You’ll find that three of them will be on their own unique pages. Click to see the full recipe and graphics!
QUINOA AVOCADO TOAST
(adapted from Nest and Glow Avocado on Quinoa Bread Toast)
This recipe was adapted from a Nest and Glow video that was circulated on social media. It looked amazing but I wasn’t certain it would work for me. Here is my variation on it (which I made prior to discovering the actual printed recipe). It was excellent! You may need to adjust the flavors to your taste. The quinoa flatbread can double as a nice small pizza crust too!
MEXICAN SWEET POTATO BOATS
(Adaped from Nest and Glow Tex-Mex Loaded Sweet Potato Skins)
This is another recipe I adapted from a Nest and Glow video I found on Facebook. They seem to love avocados as much as I do too! I made some adjustments and added a few spices which I felt were needed.
I love salsa, avocados, and beans. However, I find that tortillas (and rice) are too heavy for me most meals. This is something I concocted and enjoy it often. At first glace, the combination may appear quite odd. Some won’t like these at all because they are messy and gooey. But many have loved it! When I am feeling lazy, I make this and serve with a side of steamed veggies for a very satisfying dinner.
You’re going to assemble your nori rolls. Lay a sheet of nori down and add a layer of beans. Next, add some of the julienne cucumbers slices evenly. Then, spoon on some of the hummus, also evenly across the width of the roll. Then add the sliced avocado – again working to distribute the slices as equally as possible along the length of the roll. Finally, you will place some of the sprouts on top.
Now, you will roll up the sushi, taking care to ensure all the ingredients are compacted into a nice roll. You might need to add some water along the seam edge to help the roll seal itself. You will have a nice roll but it is very delicate. Using a tomato knife, cut the roll into 6 or 8 pieces. This is a very delicate process – use your fingers to keep all the ingredients together in each piece. Then carefully place each piece on a plate along with a small dipping bowl of fresh chunky salsa. Fresh salsa is added to each bite of the roll, taking care with the ingredients.
Note: These are not like normal sushi rolls made with rice at all. They are very soft & mushy, and you will probably want to eat each piece with a large spoon. However, these burrito nori rolls are really wonderful and worth the effort!
If you do not like or do not have any sheets of nori, you can place all these ingredients on a large piece of romaine lettuce for a fresh “taco”. That is another favorite meal of mine.
This sauce is excellent over spiralized zucchini (zoodles). I chop up some fresh tomatoes, add them along with this is pest sauce to a bowl of fresh zoodles. Divine.
Note: The miso provides the some salt but check for your taste and adjust if desired.
Avocados are so wonderful! I hope that you try the Mason jar storage technique and enjoy great avocados in your plant-based meals.