Creamy Avocados from Mexico might just be one of my favorite fruits.
I eat them for breakfast in my egg white omelets with a little feta cheese. I love them on turkey sandwiches with a little cranberry sauce and a thin slather of mayo on fluffy white bread. And I absolutely crave them as a base for tostadas topped with a ton of lettuce and spicy hot sauce.
I really don’t need much else.
I’m guessing you’ve sometimes run into the same predicament I have: awesome recipe to use avocado in but the selection of not yet ripe avos at the grocery store might be better used as paperweights than guacamole.
Timing the ripeness of avocados and planning ahead is a key part of the recipe when purchasing almost-ripe orbs of the deliciously creamy, green fruit so discreetly disguised under its pebbled peel.
These are a few basic rules I go by to ensure I’ll be cooking with a perfectly ripe avocado.
1. I usually buy my avocados while still quite firm and allow 2-3 days of ripening power on the countertop before its time to eat or use for cooking.
2. I never refrigerate a not-yet-ripened avocado, unless I want to stave off the ripening process.
3. If I need to increase my ripening time I’ll place the avocado in a paper bag with a banana. A hormone in bananas called ethylene speeds up the ripening process and within 12 to 24 hours I’ll have a ready-to-slice and devour avocado. With a touch of kosher salt please.
4. I don’t peel my avocados, but instead cut them in half from stem to stern, twist the halves in opposite directions and pull the sides apart resulting in one half with the pit and one pitless. From there it’s all about the slicing, then using a spoon to spoon out the slivered sections.
5. I’ve found the best way to store my avocado halves so they don’t discolor is to set the unused section of the pitless half back onto the pitted side and set in my refrigerator. They stay firm and ready to eat for several days afterward with no discoloration. I don’t even wrap in plastic wrap or store in a container. And yes I discovered this due to pure laziness and not wrapping a leftover. But I was delighted to find it made it so much easier to pull from the fridge, dash with kosher salt and eat. Are you detecting a pattern here?
As I said, I do love a creamy avocado. But sometimes I want a little crunch and this recipe delivers it every time. Dredging the avocado slices in panko (Japanese bread crumbs) and frying give them a crunchy outside with a still creamy middle. Topping it off with my homemade Serrano cream sauce adds just the right amount of heat so I know I’m still in taco land.
You could also use plain corn tortillas with this recipe or try a pico de gallo for extra dripping on your plate. But don’t mess with the Avocados from Mexico, they’re just right the way they are.
Fried Avocado Tacos
For the Avocado Tacos
- 2 ripe but firm Avocados from Mexico
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup milk
- ½ cup flour
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- ½ teaspoon cayenne
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 cups canola oil
- 8-10 4- inch corn tortillas
- ½ cup cotija cheese or feta
- 1 15 ounce can refried black beans heated through
- 1 ½ cups slivered cabbage leaves
- ½ cup thinly sliced cherry or chopped tomatoes
- Serrano cream sauce recipe follows
- cilantro leaves for garnish
For the Serrano Cream Sauce
- 1 serrano chile pepper seeded and ribs removed
- ½ cup cilantro leaves
- 2 green onions roughly chopped
- 1 cup sour cream
- juice of 2 limes
- 1 tablespoon water
- ½ teaspoon garlic salt
In a shallow bowl whisk flour with cayenne, chili powder and salt. In another shallow bowl, mix egg with milk. In another shallow bowl add panko.
Cut Avocados from Mexico in half, remove pits and slice halved avocados into 4 equal slices. With a large spoon, scoop out whole slices from the avocado peel. Set slices aside.
In a large dutch oven, bring canola oil up to 350 degrees according to a deep fry or candy thermometer attached to the side of pan. Prepare a large plate with paper towels for draining taco shells. One at a time, add corn tortillas to oil. Let tortillas heat for 20 seconds then using long handled tongs, form tortillas into the shape of wide bottomed shells. Cook for 30 seconds more, rotating to fry all sides and remove from pan. Place on draining plate to cool. Repeat until all shells are fried.
Prepare another draining plate with paper towel. One by one, dip avocado slices into flour mixture, then egg mixture, then toss gently in panko crumbs. Add avocado slices to hot oil and fry in small batches until golden brown, about 1 to 1 ½ minutes. Remove from oil with a slotted spoon or tongs and drain on prepared plate with paper towels.
Spread 1 to 2 spoonfulls of refried beans to bottom of taco shell, top with slivered cabbage, then stuff shells with 2-3 fried avocado slices. Top with tomatoes, cotija cheese and Serrano cream sauce. Garnish with cilantro leaves and serve immediately.
For the Serrano Cream Sauce
Add serrano pepper, cilantro and green onions to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add remaining ingredients and blend. Add kosher or more lime juice to taste.