Monday, August 13, 2007
The naughty fruit
The avocado is a remarkable fruit and one I would find hard to live without. A perfectly ripe avocado is a culinary experience unto itself. Some of the best avocados I've ever had were here in the Rio Grande Valley. It's because we are closer to the best source for quality avocados, the central-southern parts of Mexico. When Anita and I crossed the international border on Saturday to Nuevo Progresso, we picked up several avocados. Because of customs laws that were meant to protect Californian and Hawaiian agricultural interests, whole avocados were long banned from being allowed to cross the border into the United States. Recently that ban was eased, and commercial interests can import them, but the ban still exists for the individual. They do permit avocados without their pits to come into the country. The vendor removes the pit, puts a chunk of a chili in its places and closes the avocado back up. These can stay good for a couple of days. The ones we got in Nuevo Progresso were simply amazing. We used them in tacos, guacamole and a hummus sandwich. By the way, the root of the word avocado comes from Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs in Mexico. They named it ahaucatl because of its resemblance to testicles.