July 31 is National Avocado Day, making it the perfect time of year to investigate one of Miami’s greatest assets.
Florida avocado season is in full swing. Also known as Alligator Pears, these fruits (and yes, they are fruits!) are a bigger, lighter, smoother and nuttier alternative to the traditional Hass you commonly find in stores or as the base to guacamole.
If you haven’t tried one yet, there is no time like the present. Head to Little Havana or Homestead where locals sell these beauties on the side of the road. Check out Los Pinarenos Fruteria on SW 8th Street & 13th Avenue in downtown Little Havana for freshly picked avos.
In the meantime, here are seven facts about Florida Avocados that just might surprise you.
- They are lower in both fat & calories. Florida avocados contain 3-15% oil and no cholesterol. They’re a great source of potassium and vitamin A.
- Avocado trees have a long lifespan of 500-600 years.
- There are 600 varieties grown in the state of Florida.
- In the early 1900’s, Charles Deering had enough avocado trees on his estate that he could make a minimum profit of $6,500 per year in sales – roughly $100,000 today!
- Avocados are considered a berry!
- Some varieties, like the Choquette, can weigh up to 2.5 pounds.
- Ripen avocados quickly by putting them inside a brown paper bag or placing them next to bananas.