Foodiva's Kitchen: Crusty Avocado Treasure Balls

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Crusty Avocado Treasure Balls

I cook exactly the same way I work – literally, by throwing my whole being into the task at hand. Nothing is too difficult or complicated or even impossible if you break it down into small steps. Oh, having a strategy, being well-informed and organised helps too, as does good delegation. Well, perhaps there is one difference in that when cooking, I NEVER delegate. I am the female Gordon Ramsay of my own kitchen, trusting only my own tastebuds, my own heart and no-one else’s. Having other people around when I'm cooking just makes me agitated – never a good thing when one is yielding a sharp knife! *grrrrrrh* *grins*

Anyway, I’ve been meaning to write about this dish for ages but haven’t yet been able to find any decent avocadoes in the market. Either they’re rock-hard or mushy-like - why do people sell these sub-standard produce? - and nothing much can be done with them except play hand-ball (with the hard ones) or make guacamole/facemask (mushy ones). But today, today I found perfect ones for my Treasures recipe! Well, almost perfect because they’re a tad on the small side. Still, good enough to throw my whole being into making this eye-candy of a dish.

Why the impossible title? Well, I had wanted it to be longer to include the description of the filling, but my sensible side stopped me from embarrassing myself (further). Here’s the title reasoning:

Crusty - The de-skinned avocadoes were coated in white rice crumbs (breadcrumbs will also do).
Avocado – Well, it’s the main player in this show, of course!
Treasure – Describes the filling, made up of tabbouleh – bulgur wheat, tomatoes, olives, shallots, pesto. Fresh coriander and mint would have made it more authentic and brilliant, but I had neither, so there.
Balls – The split avocado was put back together into a ‘ball’ shape before being encrusted.

At centrestage: Avocado, tomato, lemon, white rice crumbs, black olives, bulgur wheat, basil pesto, shallots

              Cooked bulgur wheat

 The Bald and the Crustyful.

Okayyyy…. Let’s move on from this nonsense and get on with the recipe.

Crusty Avocado Treasure Balls
8 small or 4 large avocadoes
White rice crumb or breadcrumbs, enough for coating avocadoes
1 egg, lightly beaten

For the filling:
125g bulgur wheat
600ml water
10 black olives, chopped
1 large tomato, diced
2 shallots, finely diced
1 tablespoon pesto sauce
½ lemon, squeeze for juice

1. For tabbouleh filling, add bulgur wheat to water and bring to the boil. Let it simmer for 15 minutes until most of the water is absorbed. Drain and set aside.
2. In a large bowl combine chopped olives, tomato, shallots and pesto sauce. Add the cooked bulgur wheat to the bowl and then add lemon juice. Mix tabbouleh gently, season with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Prepare the avocado ‘shells’. Slice each fruit into two and carefully peel the skin by hand, remove seeds. Scoop out a portion of the core of each avocado half, still leaving a thick layer to hold in the filling. Add the scooped-out avocado to the tabbouleh.
4. Spoon the filling into each shell and after that’s done, press the two halves together to form what looks like a ‘whole’ avocado.
5. Carefully dip the avocado in the beaten egg and then roll it in the crumbs.
6. Place avocado in a broiler for about 3-5 minutes to just brown the crumbs. Roll over once and do not let the avocado cook or split! Serve immediately.

Even if you’d stopped at Step No. 4, this dish would still be the “Wow, Homaygad!” talk of the table. Eat it as an appetizer, mains or just to curb that hunger whenever it hits. I have a big smile every time I make this (not very often) because I know the effort, no, the LOVE, is just so worth it!

Just some post Posting notes:

White rice crumbs are my new discovery. They look like dessicated coconut except they have a rather neutral taste. Wonderfully crispy, I didn't even wait till they were properly browned before chowing these down! Can't find these? Just use regular breadcrumbs or even toasted nuts, chopped very finely. If your imagination is as wild and uncontrollable as mine, the possibilities for the coating and the filling are endless! 

Tabbouleh is just the best combination with avocado. Just in case, in case you didn't know, this is a Middle-Eastern salad - more about it on Wiki. Okay, I'll stop insulting your intelligence now.


Unknown said...

Ummm. want - what a fantastic treat

TAN said...

Interesting your photos..Yumm...

Unknown said...

Jennifurla, if you lived down the road, I would make these to send over. Fedex just doesn't deliver it fast enough... LOL!

Unknown said...

Hi Tan, welcome to my kitchen! I'd love to try out some Thai recipes too, so I'll be checking your blog for inspiration.

Maren said...

These are so cool and creative!

Chefwanabe said...

Wow...that looks so yummy, I loved the crusty avocado idea.

Unknown said...

Maren and Anna, thanks! These filled avocados are a bit heavier than salad so they're actually quite filling. Serve them whole, one per person so when the diner cuts through the avocado, the tabbouleh falls out quite spectacularly... And we're all for making a grand entrance, aren't we, ladies? *grins*

Amy said...

Thank you for being my inspiration for this month's Secret Recipe Club! I just love you blog and loved this recipe!

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