Most people who include avocados on their regular grocery list use the fruit for the same role or recipe time and again: as a garnish on salad or soup, or as the main event in a bowl of glorious guacamole. Don’t get us wrong: We LOVE the avocado in these go-to dishes! But what if we told you the avocado was so much more versatile than you could ever imagine? So versatile, in fact, that it has inspired entire cookbooks!
There are at least half a dozen cookbooks devoted solely to our favorite fruit. Here are three of the best that you should keep on your shelf:
1. Absolutely Avocados
A delectable bowl of guacamole graces the cover of this cookbook by Gaby Dalkin, but don’t be fooled: Between its covers, you’ll find 75 ways to use avocados in new ways, from breakfast to dessert, and every meal and snack in between. We’ll take an order of crab and avocado quesadillas, please!
In addition to recipes, there are helpful, well-illustrated guides to different avocado types, as well as primers on how to determine whether an avocado is ripe. Of course, if you’re more of an audiovisual learner, Avocados from Mexico has a quick video about finding the perfect avocado that shows you how to hold an avocado in the palm of your hand and gently squeeze it to see if it’s ripe. If it gives just a little, you know you’re ready to go!
2. The Avocado Cookbook
More than 50 avo-centric recipes pack Heather Thomas’s cookbook. You can expect to find some unusual preparations here, including Crispy Duck and Avocado Pancakes, which will wow guests who are lucky enough to sit around your dinner table. Thomas also includes a brief history of the avocado and its Mexican origins.
3. The Goodness of Avocado
Lucy Jessop’s cookbook may be more tightly curated, with just 40 recipes, but nothing is sacrificed in terms of quality or variety of dishes. There are some lovely surprises in this well-illustrated volume, including green gazpacho shots and coconut chocolate truffles which feature —what else?!— avocado.
To take full advantage of all these recipe ideas and more, you’ll definitely want to check out Avocados from Mexico’s helpful “how-t0″ avo tips page where you’ll find several helpful videos, everything from how to ripen avocados quicker by burying them in rice for a couple days to how best to preserve half of an avocado that you’d like to eat later by rubbing it with lemon juice, covering it with plastic wrap, and putting it in the fridge.