If you love a delicious bowl of guacamole, an avocado-based Mexican dish, or a plate of avocado-stuffed sandwiches, you know how delicious avocados are. However, the key to this delicious avocado-based meal lies in the quality of the fruit itself. It's not easy to choose the best avocado when you buy it from supermarkets or traditional markets. However, once you know the type you're looking for and how to determine the best ripeness for your needs, you can always take the best avocado home with you.
Part 1 of 3: Testing Avocado Ripeness
Step 1. Pay attention to the color
The first thing you'll notice when you see an avocado in a store is its color. Ripe avocados are generally dark, even black, with a hint of green. If you want to use the avocado as soon as possible, choose one that is dark in color. However, if you are going to use avocados in the next few days, choose one that tends to be green in color.
- Some types of avocados such as Fuerte, Ettinger, Reed, Sharwill, as well as several types of local avocados will remain green even though they are ripe. So, it is important to know what kind of avocado you are choosing.
- Color isn't the only factor to consider when choosing a ripe avocado. Always hold the avocado to check.
Step 2. Press the fruit
When you find an avocado that looks ripe, you'll still need to hold it to see if it's ripe. Hold and press gently. Ripe avocados should feel soft when pressed firmly and lightly, but not too mushy.
- A tough, unripe avocado. Buy it only if you plan to use it in the next few days.
- A mushy avocado is overripe and you should avoid it.
- The harder the fruit, the longer it will take to ripen.
- If you plan to buy several fruits at once, consider choosing fruit with different levels of ripeness. This way you will have some fruit that can be used right away, some that can be used in two or three days, also some that can only be used after four or five days.
Step 3. Check the skin
Apart from color, you should also check the texture of the avocado skin. The peel should feel a little rough, but make sure it's not dented as this indicates that the fruit is bruised.
Step 4. Check the stem
To make sure the avocado of your choice is ripe and the flesh is tender, remove the stem or top. If the bottom is green, choose this avocado. However, if the underside is brown, it's a sign that the avocado is overripe and you're better off not buying it.
When examining the stem, also pay attention to whether there is fungus or not. If this part is black or dark brown, the fruit is most likely moldy
Part 2 of 3: Choosing the Right Type of Avocado
Step 1. Choose an avocado according to your taste
While they may taste the same at first glance, there are slight differences in the taste of avocado depending on the type, which may make you prefer one particular type. Some types of avocado have a mild taste, while others have a lighter taste. Choose your avocado flavor according to your use or recipe.
- Avocado Hass, Lamb Hass, Gwen, Reed, or Sharwil have a delicate taste with a nutty undertone. For this type of local avocado, you can choose butter or Vienna avocado.
- Bacon and Zutano avocados have a lighter taste.
Step 2. Choose an avocado based on the characteristics of the skin
Some avocados are easy to peel, while others require more effort to peel them. If you're in a hurry, buy an avocado that's easier to peel to save time. However, if it's okay for you to spend a little time peeling it off, you can choose any type available.
- The easiest type of avocado to peel is Pinkerton. However, other types such as Bacon, Fuerte, Hass, and Gwen are not too difficult to peel.
- The type of avocado that is quite easy to peel is Zutano.
- The most difficult type of avocado to peel is the Ettinger's avocado, as well as the local variety.
Step 3. Purchase avocados based on their oil content
Some avocados have a higher oil content than others, which means they contain more fat. If you want to maintain a low-fat diet, choose avocados with less oil.
The types of avocados with the highest oil content are Hass, Pinkerton, Sharwil, and Fuerte
Part 3 of 3: Storing and Ripening Avocado at Home
Step 1. Store unripe avocados in a paper bag
If you buy an unripe avocado, you can put it in the kitchen to ripen in four to five days. In order for the fruit to ripen quickly, place it in a paper bag with an apple or banana which will release ethylene gas which can help the avocado ripen quickly in two to three days.
- Keep the paper bag out of direct sunlight to prevent the avocado from overripe.
- When removing the avocado, check for doneness by gently pressing down on the skin. The flesh of the fruit should feel soft, but not mushy.
Step 2. Store ripe avocados whole in the refrigerator
If you bought avocados that are ripe or ripe in a paper bag, but aren't going to use them anytime soon, leave the fruit intact. These avocados can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days.
Do not store unripe avocados in the refrigerator, as cold temperatures slow down the ripening process
Step 3. Scoop the ripe and sliced avocado with lemon juice before putting it in the refrigerator
If you eat or use half a ripe avocado and don't plan to finish it, store the rest in the refrigerator. However, drizzle the fruit with lemon or lime juice to prevent it from turning brown. Wrap the avocado in plastic or place it in an airtight container and store it for no more than a day.
Keep the seeds attached to the chopped avocado to prevent the fruit from turning brown
- Buying a large bag of avocados may seem a bit more frugal, but all of these packaged fruits are likely to be the same level of ripeness. You may not be able to use them all before the fruit rots. It's better to buy avocados separately so that you can choose ripe fruit for immediate consumption, slightly ripe fruit for the next two days, and unripe fruit that can be eaten in four or five days.
- Ripe avocados usually have a stronger aroma than unripe ones. So, you might be able to test the scent before choosing one.