- Scientific Name: Persea americana
- Region of Origin: Central America – The avocado probably originated in southern Mexico but was cultivated from the Rio Grande to central Peru before the arrival of Europeans.
- Type: Very Edible!
- General History: An avocado is a fruit and not a vegetable! It is a member of the berry family. In the past, the avocado had a well-entrenched reputation for inducing sexual prowess. It wasn’t purchased or consumed by any person wishing to protect their personal reputation! Growers had to sponsor a public relations campaign to dispel its ill-founded reputation before avocados became popular. Avocados got their name from the Spanish explorers. They couldn’t pronounce the Aztec word for the fruit, know as ahuacatl, “testicle,” because of its shape. The Spanish called the aguacate, leading to the guacamole we know today.
2) Avocado Plant Uses:
- As Food: Unlike many fruits that typically have a sweet or acidic taste, avocados have a smooth, buttery consistency and a rich flavor. A popular use is in salads. Avocados are also processed into guacamole and can be used in sandwich spreads. Avocado paste with flavor extracts and skim milk can also be used to make an ice cream.
- As Medicine: Leaves twigs and fruit can be used as an emmenagogue. It will stimulate menstrual flow when menstruation is absent for reasons other than pregnancy, such as hormonal disorders or conditions like oligomenorrhea (infrequent or light menses).
3) Growing Avocados in Hawaii
- General: Avocado Trees prefer moderate temperatures of 60 F to 80 F. Different varieties of avocados mature throughout the year. Bright indirect light is best for young avocado plants, direct sun will give younger plants a sunburn!
- Difficulties with this plant: Avocados grow so prolifically that we weed them in non-designated zones! Some avocados are growing on the volcanic crater slopes and we are using them as natural posts and to control erosion. We try to control the height of trees otherwise fruit is not harvestable.
- History of this Plant at Hedonisia: We now have so many avocado trees that the new plants count as a “weed” However, with at least 7 varieties we cater to avocado aficionados!
Avocados should reach full maturity before they are picked. However, they do not ripen on the tree. The tree can actually be used as a storage unit by keeping the fruit on the tree for many months after maturing. Eventually, they will fall.
We have avocado trees which produce over 300 avocados per season. When those avocados start to drop, if there is no ‘cushion’, they fall directly on the ground which damages the fruit. So we have developed the Tarp Cushion to maximize our harvest!
- 1) Weed all the nearby areas to the avocado drop zone. (the slope the back border, by Ohi’a Camper and so on)
- 2) Take all the weeds and put them in big piles all around the avocado drop zone.
- 3) Take old raggy tarps and put them directly on the weed piles in an overlapping fashion so that the weeds provide a ‘cushion’.
- 4) When they avocados fall they will fall on the Tarp Weed Cushion. This means that they will not bruise so badly so they will ripen with much more edible flesh!
- 5) As the season continues the weeds underneath the tarp will slowly rot and turn to mulch creating great compost for the next harvest!
TARP CUSHION UPKEEP:
Falling Leaves, rotting fruit, and heavy rain will eventually make the avocado weed cushion look really scraggly! So about once every month during avocado season follow these steps to maintain the tarp cover:
- The tarps need to be taken off and brushed clean.
- The old weed pile is to be pitch forked towards the avocado tree and leveled out.
- Gather fresh weeds and fallen leaves and put on the weed pile in as levelly as possible.
- Then put the tarps freshly back on.
- Make sure to cover all muddy spots in the area with weeds and then tarp so that the entire drop zone for avocados has a cushion!
- Once Avocado Season is over, take the tarps off and put them away neatly.
When Avocados are in Abundance! We are open to any intern making deals with vendors and then take batches of avocados out. We have already made a deal with the local sushi restaurant where they will give a free sushi meal for a bucket of avocados.
The lady at the corner has a stand. Other restaurants and farmers are often also open to deals. And we have at least 7 different varieties of avocados from the large ones behind Banana Hale to the buttery ones besides Rain Forest Tent.
Hedonisia Avocado Recipes!
We created some unique recipes for using avocados on our property:
1 – Simple Avocado Bisque
- 1 qt milk
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary – chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 med. avocados
- 4 tablespoons lemon juice
- dash of cayenne pepper
- In a saucepan, combine milk, rosemary, and salt, and bring to simmer (if full boil is reached, bisque is ruined!).
- Remove from heat and set aside for 1 hour.
- Blend avocado, lemon juice, and cayenne.
- Gently whisk avocado mixture into milk.
- Chill. Overnight is best, but 1 hour is ok.
- If serving heated, use lowest heat setting and serve when hot, not simmering or boiling.
- Garnish with sour cream, fresh rosemary, croutons or crushed crackers.
Variations: Substitute: rosemary for fresh tarragon. Tulsi basil for oregano
2 – Hawaiian Guacamole!
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1/2 med. tomato – seeded and diced
- 2 Hawaiian bird peppers – seeded and minced
- 2 tablespoons cilantro – coarsely chopped
- juice of 1 lime
- Salt and pepper – to taste
- Cut avocado and mash with a fork in med. bowl
- Mix in remainder of ingredients
- Serve immediately
Cilantro for parsley, oregano for tulsi, Hawaiian bird pepper for jalapeno or serrano chiles, tomato for pomegranate seeds.
Hedonisia Variations can include:
- 1/2 small, sweet white onion
- Cumin, curry powder, paprika, or favorite seasoning
- Cucumber – seeded and finely chopped
- Olives – pitted and chopped
Raw Avocado Chocolate Pie-Crust Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups almond flour/meal (ground at home or store-bought)
1/4-1/2 cup raw coconut oil
3 T raw honey
pinch of salt1. Fill a medium-sized bowl with warm/hot tap water and place coconut oil jar in a bowl so that oil can soften/liquify.
2. Place almond flour in a large bowl and mash with a fork to break up any chunks.
3. Once the oil is softened, add to flour and mix well.
4. Add honey and salt to mixture and mix with hands until it forms a dough like texture.
5. Press into a pie plate to make a crust and place in freezer until filling is complete.
- 2 avocados
1/4 cup maple syrup
4 T nut milk
1 vanilla bean or 1 t vanilla extract
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/4 cup raw coconut sugar
- 1. In a food processor or vita-mix blender, combine avocados, maple syrup, nut milk and vanilla until very smooth and silky.
- 2. Place mixture into a bowl. Add cacao powder and coconut sugar and mix with a spoon until well combined. Taste the filling and see if it is rich/sweet enough to your liking. You can always add a bit more of cacao and sweetener if you would like.
- 3. Pour/spoon filling into pie crust and spread evenly. It is ready to eat! Store in fridge up to four days.