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The Lordly Avocado

You won't catch The Food Guys, Jon and Greg, curbing their enthusiasm for "the lordly avocado," as Jon calls it. What other fruit's versatility, taste, and high fat qualifies it as a "super food?" They're amused but not surprised by its sudden hipness among throngs of Millennial avocado toast-eaters.

High in healthy monounsaturated fat, easily burned for energy and useful for regulating blood sugar levels, varieties of this fruit, native to Mexico and Central America, grow in warm climates around the globe. The Hass is the most commercially popular avocado cultivar worldwide; it accounts for 80% of the avocados sold in the U.S.

It's not just the fruit that has grown in popularity. Avocado oil is gaining fans for its high smoke point and usefulness for deep-fat frying and in salad dressing.

Greg's favorite way to eat an avocado is raw, with a sprinkle of salt and a squeeze of lime juice on its flesh.  Spread on bread with cheese and ham or prepared as guacamole, it acts as a medium in sandwiches or a dip.

Greg's got this tip: "They're hard as rocks, and totally inedible when picked. Don't refrigerate a hard avocado and expect it to ripen later. First let it ripen, then keep it chilled before you use it, to slow down spoilage."

For some history of the surge in popularity of the avocado in the U.S., here's a link to Olga Khazan's January 2015 article in The Atlantic: "The Selling of the Avocado: How the 'Alligator Pear' Went From Obscure Delicacy To America's Favorite Fruit."

(Broadcast: "The Food Guys," 6/28/15, 7/2/15 and 3/31/19. Listen weekly on the radio at 11:50 a.m. Sundays and again at 4:54 p.m. Thursdays, or via podcast.)

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