Fuerte Avocados

Varietal. There was a time when I didn’t know what that word meant. There was a time when I didn’t understand that there was more than one option when it came to fruit.

There was also a time when I didn’t like Avocados (positively love them now). People change, usually when they get an education. So here’s one on Avocados and one particular varietal (SPOILER ALERT it’s not the ubiquitous Hass).

As previously mentioned Avocados are not a vegetable, but a fruit (it’s actually a member of the berry family). Some 95% of United States Avocado production is located in California (with 60% occurring in San Diego County).

Avocados got their name from the Spanish explorers. They couldn't pronounce the Aztec word for the fruit, know as Ahuácatl. Ahuácatl actually means testicle (called such because of the shape of the fruit). Over the years the Avocado has also been known as the Alligator Pear (due to its shape, coloring, and rough skin). Although Avocados contains loads of fat most of it is monosaturated fat (the good kind). They’re also chocked full of Vitamin E (which is awesome! for your skin!).

And in case you wondering the varietal I’ve recently gotten acquainted with is the Fuerte Avocado. A Spring Avocado, Fuerte has a medium rich nutty flavor with sweet overtones. Fuerte was the first Avocado in California (they showed up in the middle of the 1800s but didn’t become popular till the 1920s). It earned its name (which means Strong in Spanish) after it withstood a severe frost in California in 1913. They’re great in salads and on top of Mexican food.

Here in the US we mainly use Avocados in the form of Guacamole, but in other parts of the world such as Brazil, India, and the Philippines Avocados are used to make milkshakes. To hurry ripening put them in a paper bag with a banana. If your Avocado is too ripe you can refrigerate your Avocado for several days. Avocado becomes bitter when cooked, so make sure to enjoy them raw. When adding Avocado to cooked dishes, do it at the last minute after its come off the heat.