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I won’t lie…I feel like a bit of a maniac dedicating an entire post to a fruit. But as the inevitable New Year’s detox kicks off, I felt that if ever there was a time to give a shout out to one of the most versatile, good for you, and not to mention delicious super foods then now is the time.
I’ve always been a big fan of Avocados, but I never fully appreciated just how powerful their health benefits are until I started following the Clean and Lean diet (I use the term ‘diet’ loosely – as wanky as it sounds it’s more of a lifestyle!) Clean and Lean was devised by a chap called James Duigan, who’s responsible for getting super fitties Elle McPherson and Rosie Huntington-Whitley into such great shape. The ethos behind it is that by cutting out sugar and processed rubbish from your diet, and eating foods as close to their natural state as possible (fruit, veg, whole grains) your body will function more efficiently and hence, burn more calories. Essentially it’s healthy eating at its most basic but it works…I lost half a stone in the first month and have kept it off ever since.
Another of the Clean and Lean rules is don’t be afraid of fat, and this is where the trusty avocado comes in. Yes, saturated fats like butter aren’t great for you, but natural fats, like the ones found in nuts, oily fish and avocado really are. Avocados are also packed full of nutrients, and their health benefits are endless. What’s more, they’re so versatile that you can cram avocado into pretty much any meal of the day. Here are a few of my favourite ways to eat them but get creative-you can literally stick them in anything!
Breakfast – Crumpets with mashed Avocado and poached eggs
This breakfast is not only tasty, filling and super healthy, but its really quick and easy to make. Whilst you’re toasting your crumpet and poaching your egg, simply mash half an avocado with a drizzle of olive oil and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Top your crumpet with the mashed avocado, top with the egg and voila! Breakfast in under three minutes.
Lunch – Prawn, Kale and Quinoa salad with Avocado and Cannelini bean salsa
I won’t flatter myself by calling this a recipe, as it was concocted by chucking whatever was in my fridge into a bowl, but it was pretty delicious nonetheless.
To make the avocado salsa dice half an avocado, add about a tablespoon of chopped red onion, a couple of diced cherry tomatoes, a good handful of coriander and then mix together with a drizzle of olive oil, a squeeze of lime and some salt and pepper. I added a couple of spoonfuls of cannelini beans and then served it with some steamed kale, quinoa and some king prawns, but you could serve this with whatever you like!
Dinner – Creamy Avocado Pesto Spaghetti
It may not be the prettiest dish in the kitchen, but this recipe has become one of my staples. It’s super healthy and is also super quick to whip up – I serve it with gluten free spaghetti, but you could serve it with any variety of pasta.
To make enough pasta sauce to serve two you’ll need:
Put all of the ingredients into a food processor and blitz until completely smooth. You may want to add a bit more yoghurt if you want it even creamier, and if you’re feeling really fancy you can add a couple of spoonfuls of grated parmesan. Once the mixtures really smooth simply stir through the pasta and serve – it really is that easy!
So there you have it – just three reasons why I think avocados are definitely worthy of a blog post all of their own!