Posted by: adventuressetravels | April 17, 2012

Avocados: the Perfect Fruit

In the United States, and the Western World we tend to think of avocados as savory. They should be eaten with salt: on crackers with a little bit of lemon, in salads to make them pop, mashed into scrumptious guacamole dip, and other such delights.  Growing up I thought of avocados as a treat.  They were something that was only to be had on special occasions, but I always adored them in whatever salty, spicy dish they came in.  It was not until my 20s that I tried avocado as a dessert.

The first time I tried an avocado bubble tea was in Pocchi, a (now defunct) Indonesian bubble tea place in Lawrence, Kansas.  As dubious as I had been to try it, from the firs sip I was hooked.  The rich creamy texture lent itself to dessert form.  Add a little sugar, milk, and ice and the resulting drink was to die for; sumptuous ice cream on-the-fly.

A cocktail bar in Bratislava, Slovakia that served a decadent avocado cocktail was my next introduction to the world of avocado delights.  Unfortunately Eastern Europe is not the land for avocados and the drink was quickly taken off the menu.  But the encounter gave me hope that avocado desserts were more common than I had once feared.

When I reached Morocco I wanted to fall to my knees.  I had reached the home of the avocado smoothie.  They were available at every fruit stand, each one more delicious than the last.  The drink was thick, but had enough milk that it wasn’t too thick.  It was sweet, but not as sweet as the overwhelmingly honeyed mint tea or sugary desserts, avocado smoothies were the perfect dessert.

Then, in Da Nang, Vietnam, I found the pinnacle of avocado desserts.  Ai, a vivacious Vietnamese girl, introduced me to this delicacy.  She started singing its praises in

The slightly-built girl led me, My, and our group of friends through a labyrinth of vendors at Bac My An Market, to its cavernous food court.  The great hall was filled with tables and vendors selling all types of food.  The jumble of food sellers and tables appeared to be utter chaos.  If the stalls had signs they were tiny paper boards, but somehow my intrepid friend led me straight to the right area, and we pulled up seats.

“You can have more avocado, more ice cream, or just the regular one,” she told me.  “I’m going to get more avocado in mine, but you can have whatever way you want.”

I decided on having a regular one – half avocado and half ice cream.

How she had found her way back to the right place so quickly is beyond me, but moments later a middle-aged Vietnamese woman in a red apron took our order.  With lightening speed she ladled avocado into glasses and scooped ice cream on top.  Carefully she drizzled coconut cream over it, and as a finishing touch sprinkled golden-brown toasted coconut crisps on top.

He set our desserts down in front of us and I stared wide-eyed at the elaborately layered desserts.

“You should mix it up,” Ai instructed me, mashing the avocado and ice cream together in her glass cup.

I always find it interesting how do-it-yourself Vietnam is with its drinks and desserts.  From ice coffee to this, everything is brought out how it is poured – in layers.  The customer mixes everything together his or herself.

I plunged my spoon into the mixture, swirled everything together, and took the first bite.  I closed my eyes and let the cool creamy mixture dissolve in my mouth before crunching the toasted coconut morsels.  This was truly decadent, the perfect mixture of flavors and textures.

Why wasn’t the entire world celebrating the avocado for the diverse and delectable fruit that it was? Southeast Asia viewed the avocado as a fruit to be used in desserts; the Western world sees it as savory.  Unfortunately, introducing avocado as a dessert food in North America or Europe might be a challenge for more reasons than one.

Because of the price of avocados in North America, it is extremely difficult to find avocado smoothies or desserts.  But if you happen to be in Morocco, Southeast Asia, or see an avocado smoothie at a bubble tea shop in North America then I highly recommend that you try it.

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Responses

  1. I want this. In my mouth.


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