Hi I’m Julian Lara with the Tropical Fruit Growers South Florida; we’re an association of farmers that specialize in growing tropical fruits.
Now you can find these tropical fruits in the supermarket or at our website www.tropicalfrtuitgrowers.com. We’re in The Redlands, an agricultural area 25 miles southwest to Miami, Florida and we’re going to take a look at these avocados.
Avocados are native to Mexico and they’ve been around for thousands of years, and now they grow well all around the world in tropical and subtropical regions and they’ve been recorded here in South Florida in 1833 for the first time and they’ve been available commercially in the early nineteen hundreds.
We have so many varieties of avocado here in South Florida that we almost have them all year round. As you can see right here we have a Russell avocado, it has a much smoother skin than the ones you see in supermarkets that are from California or central America, they’re a lot larger and lower in fat and cholesterol and they’re very delicious.
Our farmers pick these avocados by hand when they are mature and they will either ripen at the supermarket or in your kitchen table… so why don’t we go to the kitchen and cut one of these up.
Now we’re back from the grove and we have our avocados. These are mature ones, these take about 2 to 5 days to ripen and when you get them from our growers they look like this, but when you go to the market make sure you don’t pick any avocados from the bunch that have any blemishes or soft spots.
When they’re ripe they look like this, they’re lighter in color and they yield to slight pressure. If you want your avocados to ripen faster here’s an old trick my grandma taught me: you get your mature avocado, put it in a paper bag, you get a tomato and put it in the bag with the avocado and the ethylene gas from the tomato will make the avocado ripen faster.
To open your avocado pierce the skin with a knife until you hit the seed, go kind of slow so you don’t slip, then cut around the seed, turn the halves in opposite directions so you can remove the seed. Slice a piece off the avocado, peel the skin back and dice it up.
For storing avocado what you got to do is let it ripen on the counter, do not put it in the refrigerator because it won’t ripen. So once it’s ripen on the counter, like this one, you can put it whole in the refrigerator and if you want it to last longer, because these will only last a couple of days in the refrigerator when it’s whole, so you have to slice it up or dice it up and put some lime juice to keep it from browning and it will last about a week. If you want it for longer you can mash this up into a puree, put it in a plastic container and put it in the freezer with some lime juice and it’ll last about six months.
As you can see avocados are very large, this one weighs about 3 pounds and they can weigh up to 4. Avocados are very rich in vitamins E and are used in many different ways, they can be eaten fresh with a little bit of salt or you can dice them up into salads, make some guacamole, slice them up for some sandwiches, or in other countries they use them for milkshakes and for ice-cream. So as you can see avocados have a lot of uses and if you want to order some of our fresh avocados go to our website www.tropicalfruitgrowers.com find one of our growers, have it delivered to your house and also look for some cool recipes on the avocado.