As a native Californian (note, the appropriate use) there are quite a few things I miss living in the UK, and I’ve ridden more than my share of waves of homesickness. Unsurprisingly, a lot of it’s related to food, and my most common trigger tends to be supermarket avocado.
It’s not that supermarket avocados are better at home. They’re not. They’re hard, slow ripening and not nearly as nice as when you get them ripe from the farmer’s market or similar. But I have that option at home. We want guacamole? Buy an avocado, an onion, and pick a lime off the tree. That’s just not an option here. Even with all of my food allergies, I’m not fond of prior planning. My diet tends to be, if you can eat it, eat it when you want it.
There’s also the issue of variety. While the black, knobbly skinned Hass avocados, a personal favourite, are available with relative frequency, there’s also the bane of my existence: the Fuerte. The name is slightly sordid, inviting you to slyly slide your gaze along its unnaturally smooth green skin. Furtively. While I feel duty bound to appreciate any avocado that comes my way, these have had their three strikes, tasting of nothing on toast and absolutely ruining what would have otherwise been a perfect bowl of guacamole. Nothing is supposed to ruin my guacamole. The less said about these evil twin avocados, the better.
In any case, when avo cravings strike, I’m left in a wash. In addition to the slow ripening and slight lack of flavour, my real hurdle to avocado consumption here is price; they’re so bloody expensive. This may be because I’ve got a bad habit of converting everything in my head to dollars at approximately $2.00 to the pound, a sum I reached as I can’t do math and am constantly trying to convince myself that just the currency alone is worth staying and earning in. Even when avos are priced reasonably (79 p for a medium fruit), thinking about the exchange, and the high probability the fruit will go off before it becomes edible, I’m just put off by it.
That all changed recently. Let me sing the praises of the Friday night clearance shop. Having nothing better to do on weekend evenings, TMM and I have taken to spending an unhealthy amount of time in ASDA. He reads magazines and I zombie through the store trying to decide what we’re cooking. As I’m unable to pass up the bins of marked down produce, no less than twice in the last month I’ve stumbled on a plethora of avocados at 20 p each!
At 20 p, I don’t mind if one of them has a big stab mark in it… that’s what the pit is for.
At 20 p I’m not bothered if there’s some ropey brown bits… I’ll cut around them, I have like six of the little guys.
And at 20 p each, I’ve had avocado on toast every Saturday morning in March!
So, thank you gods of the ASDA clearance aisle. While you don’t giveth with the same plenteous bounty as the Tesco Metro clearance aisle, you’re obviously more than generous in your goods.