Avocados perfect for Cinco de Mayo dishes
BY NICOLE MARSHALL MIDDLETON World Scene Writer
Wednesday, May 02, 2012
5/02/12 at 4:57 AM
With California avocados in season, Cinco de Mayo provides an excellent opportunity to enjoy the tasty fruit.
This year, Americans will use 81 million pounds of avocados in their Cinco de Mayo meals, according to the California Avocado Commission.
Guacamole is a popular dish enjoyed on Cinco de Mayo, but chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger, known as the Too Hot Tamales, have teamed up with the commission to provide recipes that are perfect for any celebration.
"There's so much more you can do with avocados than guacamole," said Feniger. "I'm a huge guacamole fan, and I encourage chefs of all levels to experiment with the rich, creamy taste of California avocados."
Milliken and Feniger, both of whom have competed on Bravo's "Top Chef Masters," are the co-chef/owners of the popular Border Grill restaurants in Santa Monica, Calif., downtown Los Angeles and Las Vegas, along with the Border Grill Truck, which brings their modern Latin cuisine to neighborhoods throughout southern California. Feniger also is the chef/owner of STREET in Los Angeles.
"California avocados have a superior taste and a consistent quality that we can always count on to make our dishes spectacular," Milliken said. "The fruit's season runs from spring to fall, so Cinco de Mayo is the perfect time to add this creamy and versatile fruit to your favorite dishes."
California avocados contain nearly 20 vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients, with the greatest concentration in the dark green fruit closest to the peel. To get to the nutrient-rich fruit directly under the peel, one should nick and peel the skin from the avocado.
Here is a recipe from Milliken and Feniger.
CALIFORNIA AVOCADO SHRIMP TOSTADAS
3/4 cup beer
3 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound domestic, wild-caught jumbo shrimp, peeled and cleaned
2 ripe, fresh California avocados, seeded, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 Roma tomato, finely diced
1/4 cup finely diced red onion
1 small carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 jalapeño, stem and seeds removed, finely diced
1/2 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
1 1/2 limes, juiced
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Salt, to taste
Ground black pepper, to taste
Canola oil, for frying
4 (6-inch) corn tortillas
4 romaine lettuce leaves, finely julienned
1. Combine beer, bay leaves, celery seeds, cayenne and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Add shrimp and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until just turning pink and cooked through. Remove shrimp from liquid, cool to room temperature, and cut into 1/2-inch dice.
2. In a large bowl, combine cooked shrimp with avocado, tomato, onion, carrot, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Stir gently, taste, and adjust seasonings as necessary. Chill thoroughly.
3. Meanwhile, pour oil to a depth of 1/2-inch in a small pan for frying. Fry the tortillas on both sides until crisp and drain on paper towels.
4. To serve, divide julienned lettuce evenly between each crispy corn tortilla. Top with avocado shrimp mixture and serve immediately.
Recipe created by chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger for the California Avocado Commission.
Original Print Headline: Avocados not just for guacamole
Nicole Marshall Middleton 918-581-8459
Celebrate Cinco de Mayo by serving California Avocado Shrimp Tostadas. Courtesy