Avocados are like the ghastly, irritating girl at primary school.
The one you learned to love as an adult and ended up marrying and living happily ever after with.
That girl became the one thing you “avo” wanted. You couldn’t live without. Not my pun.
As a child, I lumped avocados in with Bluff oysters, brussel sprouts, blue cheese, olives and tripe and onions. Vile!
Avocado were flavourless and greasy - the consistency of something from the sump of a car engine. Whenever avocados were laid on the family dinner table my older brother would discreetly point at his nose. We would snicker, push God’s wonder food to the side of the plate and get on with the meat and potatoes.
We weren’t alone though. An online newspaper study – so its veracity is impeccable - found that of 100 common foods, avos rated top of a children’s
It was a texture rather than a taste thing. I read somewhere that palates become more sophisticated as we mature, and we move on from salty and sweet, which is a signal to picky kids that something is safe to eat. We realise bitter or sour, or in this case green and greasy, won’t kill us and we learn to enjoy. We get to love the things we hated as children.
My epiphany came when I arrived in the Bay of Plenty, the country’s avo fruit bowl, and I noticed all these stunning trees with their thick canopies and large, dark green leathery leaves. It looked magical, a new take on Christmas, with their black, pebbled skinned, baubles of goodness.
Soon this ‘unbeliever’ was smothering a chilled fruit with sweet chilli or Siracha and scoffing it before breakfast, with breakfast, or as breakfast. I would often devour one while deciding dinner. And then doing something with an avo for dinner.
I’m responding to the national cry for New Zealand to eat more avos. Mexico eats 40 avocados, or 10kgs, per person per year. But, of course, Mexico’s veins flow with guacamole. Other countries average 28, New Zealand just 16. The industry would like for us to try for 40 a year – less than one a week - which shouldn’t be hard.
Remember avos are considered a super food with their nutrients and antioxidants such as folic acid, Omega 3, magnesium, potassium, lutein and fibre. So everyone wins here.