Saturday, 11 May 2013

Saturday 11th of May 2013

I love avocados.  Popping a couple in my shopping basket and bringing them home, to be tucked away in a brown paper bag on the kitchen counter until they are perfectly ripe has become something of a weekly ritual.  Sliced into salads,  quickly mashed to spread on a tortilla for a fast quesadilla or just eaten, greedily,  with a splash of vinaigrette,  I've yet to find a way to eat them that I've not liked. Jeffrey Steingarten informs me, in The Man Who Ate Everything, (a corker of a book, by the way, and highly recommended) that "Brazilians eat avocados for dessert,  mashed up with sugar". Haven't tried it yet, but maybe one of these days I will...

Last night, for supper, I grilled a stack of lamb leg steaks and made a couple of different salads to go with.  In the interests of gilding the lily,  I also toasted some pitta and knocked up a batch of this gorgeous avocado houmous.  Smooth and mildly nutty-tasting, this knocks guacamole out of the park as far as I'm concerned, and is A.Mazing with lamb.  It also has the huge advantage of staying perfectly green for days,  rather than mere minutes,  so can be handily stashed in the 'fridge for hungry moments (or, quite frankly, for those standing-by-the-open-'fridge-with-a-spoon moments!).  Cooking the already-cooked, tinned chickpeas for a few more minutes makes for a desirably smooth houmous, plus you can fish out as many of the papery skins as possible (they seem to detach easily when cooked) for an even better texture.

Avocado Houmous

410g can chickpeas,  drained and rinsed well
2 ripe avocados,  flesh scooped out and roughly chunked up
1 dsp tahini
1/2 - 1 tsp salt
juice of a lemon
avocado oil, as needed (and see below)

Put the drained,  rinsed chickpeas into a saucepan and cover with water.   Bring to the boil and cook for 3 minutes,  or until very soft.  Scoop out as many of the skins as you can or want to.   Drain and allow them to steam dry for a few minutes.  Put everything, bar the oil (and you can use a different mild oil if you want, I just always use avocado oil here) into the processor and whizz to a smooth and creamy looking paste.  Drizzle in oil to achieve the texture that you want,  I prefer my houmous to be on the softer side, rather than standing up in stiff peaks.  Serve immediately, or seal in a tub in the 'fridge for later.

Cath xx

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