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Hass: These are the avocados you’re most likely to find at the grocery store. Their advantage—and the reason retailers like them—is that their pebbly skins are tough and protective, which makes the fruits easier to handle, store, and ship. Plus, you can tell when they’re ripe because the skin turns black as the flesh softens.


Fuerte: Another common grocery store variety, Fuerte avocados are large and distinctively pear-shaped with thin, smooth, light-green skin.


Bacon: Large and oval, this variety has smooth, thin, dark-green skin and a pleasantly nutty aftertaste. It’s named after James Bacon, who developed it in 1954.


Pinkerton: This variety is distinguished by thick, darkish-green skin, an elongated pear shape, and a very small seed.


Zutano: An early-fall to early-winter variety, the medium to large pear-shaped Zutano has shiny yellow-green skin and light-textured flesh.


Reed: Large, round, and plump with a thick skin that’s slightly pebbly, Reed is the only avocado variety grown in the summer.


how to pit an avocado

what is it?

Famously mashed to make guacamole, avocados are a unique fruit; they have a yellow-green, buttery, smooth, mild-tasting flesh surrounding a large stonelike pit. There are several varieties of avocado. The two most widely available are the Haas and the Fuerte. The Haas has a rough texture and a skin that ranges from dark green to purpley black. The Fuerte is larger with smooth emerald-green skin. Whichever kind you choose, be sure that it's ripe before eating it; the fruit is ripe when it's gives a little when pressed.

kitchen math:

1 large avocado = about 1 1/4 cup diced

how to choose:

Avocados only ripen once picked. Some markets will offer avocados that are ripe and ready to eat as well as those that need more ripening, but more often than not, you will encounter rock-hard avocados that need a few days at room temperature to ripen. The biggest mistake people make when buying avocados is choosing ones that are too soft. To sort the ripe from the unripe at the store, cradle an avocado in your hand and press gently—don’t poke or you’ll bruise it. A perfectly ripe avocado should feel firm with a slight give, not soft.

Once the flesh of an avocado is exposed, it discolors quickly so it's best to use and serve them right away. The addition of lemon or lime juice will help slow down the discoloration, as will storing it, tightly wrapped, in the refrigerator.

how to prep:

To neatly remove the pit, slice the avocado in half lengthwise around the pit. Twist the two halves in opposing directions and pull them apart. Carefully but firmly chop the blade of a chef's knife into the pit and use the knife to twist pit out of the avocado. (To dislodge the pit from the knife, scrape it against the inside edge of the sink or grasp it with a kitchen towel to pull it off the knife.) To remove the flesh from its skin, hold the avocado in the palm of your hand and, using a large spoon, carefully scoop out the flesh in a single piece. When an avocado is soft and ripe, it's usually easier to slice or dice it before removing its skin. Once halved and pitted, use a paring knife to cut the avocado diagonally into 1/4-inch (or wider) slices, without piercing through the skin. If a dice is your goal, make a second set of diagonal slices perpendicular to the first. To remove the sliced or diced avocado from its skin, hold the avocado in the palm of your hand and, using a large spoon, carefully scoop out the slices.

how to store:

Leave avocados out at room temperature to ripen if needed. (To speed ripening, put them in a bag with a banana.) Once the avocados are ripe, keep them refrigerated where they should last a few more days.

Comments (3)

ShawnDavis writes: Mind Blowing Posted: 6:07 am on November 7th

rednails16 writes: i need this recipe but can not find it would love to try it Posted: 12:07 am on May 13th

cheyjod writes: Help!!!

I am entertaining a group of foodie's over the 4th of July weekend. I am thinking of doing Mexican fare one night and a barbeque on the 4th. I would like to do some traditional dishes as well as somthing. unique. I hope not to be in the kitchen the whole weekend. There will be children as well as adults I love a challenge and I am not intimidated in the kitchen

Thank you

Cheyjod Posted: 1:48 pm on May 5th

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