By Seth Budick - http://www.friends4oldlafarmersmarket.org -Cross-posted from NelaList:
Though avocado season runs year round in Southern California, that constancy belies the subtle shifts as different varieties take center stage in the groves and at the farmers market. For most people, the words avocado and Hass are synonymous, but if you checked out Spencer Farms table last week, you would have discovered Fuerte and Zutano varieties in addition to the ubiquitous Hass. Outside of Southern California, you'd be lucky to find anything other than Hass and the more watery varieties grown in Florida, since thin skinned fruit like the Fuerte travels very poorly. Right now though, we're in the middle of Fuerte season, so why not take advantage of the opportunity to sample some of the wonderful diversity of fruit that's available at the farmers market and nowhere else?
Hass are justifiably famous for their richness and incredibly smooth texture. Fuertes and Zutanos are hardly slackers in those departments however, and after a kitchen taste test, my wife and I concluded that the Fuerte may have the most robust, characteristic avocado flavor of the three. All make wonderful guacamole, sandwich toppings, and additions to salads, so no matter which you choose, you won't be disappointed. Another possibility is to make a delicious salad dressing by pureeing the flesh of 1 large avocado together with 3/4C buttermilk, the juice of 1 Meyer lemon and 1 orange or tangerine, 1/2tsp salt and 1/2C fresh cilantro.
While there's no denying that avocados are fatty, most of that is monounsaturated fat, like olive oil, and avocados are also cholesterol free. You might start preparing for any impending bans on trans fats by switching over to avocados now! Avocados are also rich in potassium (more than bananas), fiber, B vitamins, vitamin E and folate. For a list of what else is in season now at the market, click on http://www.friends4oldlafarmersmarket.org. As always, take home fresh breads, cheeses, nuts and fruit preserves, or enjoy a dinner of roasted corn and potatoes, tamales and honey pineapple chicken.
Please stop by the market for fresh, field-ripened, high quality produce from local farmers and spend time with your friends, neighbors and other community members.
The Highland Park Certified Farmers Market is located adjacent to the Highland Park Gold Line station at Marmion Way between Ave. 57 & 58 and operates Tuesdays from 3-7PM.