Thursday, November 27, 2014

Some Avocado History For Thanksgiving...!

Since today is primarily a food based holiday, let's ave a little food history to keep things interesting.

I found an interesting article about avocados that surprised me. I thought I knew a lot about the avocado, but I didn't. Guess I'm not as well informed as I thought!

Avocados, The Toxic Berry
By Jamie Frater on Monday, July 15, 2013

Avocados are toxic to almost all animals (including cats and dogs). Humans are a rare exception. It is the only fruit to contain persin, a fatty acid, which, when eaten by animals causes vomiting, diarrhea, and other nasty symptoms. Consumption of large quantities can cause death within twelve hours.

Avocados are berries (fleshy fruits coming from a single ovary). Interestingly, this broad definition of a berry means that bananas, pumpkin, tomatoes, watermelon, and coffee are also berries (you can tell that to the next person who tries to argue that tomatoes are vegetables). Curiously this also excludes strawberries as berries.

Eighty percent of modern avocados originate from one “mother” tree which was patented by mailman Rudolph Hass from California in 1935. The tree survived until 2002 when it died of root rot. Unfortunately Hass only made $5,000 in his lifetime from his patent on the tree because his partner sold cultivars to anyone who wanted to buy them. Subsequently Hass spent the remainder of his life working for the California Mail Service.

Avocado also has an interesting characteristic: it is the only berry with no living animal large enough to spread it through consumption and release as dung. This has led scientists to believe that it co-evolved with prehistoric megafauna that were large enough to eat the fruit whole. The megafauna went extinct but the avocado remained as an unusual monument to an unknown dinosaur.

Well, I hope you found this article as interesting as I did. One thing about Listverse, they always have interesting topics to discuss!

I hope you all have an enjoyable Thanksgiving Day, and can make it back home safely if you are traveling.

Coffee out on the patio today. Sweet potato pie sound OK?


Mamahen said...

Interesting stuff I love them but doesn't so don't buy them often and just as glad if they are that dangerous to my critters....HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILY...will enjoy a cup on the patio before the madness starts here :))

JO said...

I'm allergic to them so don't eat them very often. I can have dip as long as I only have a little, very little.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

HermitJim said...

Hey Mamahen...
Funny how some folks love 'em and others don't. As you can imagine, here in Houston they sell a lot of avocados. Very high percent of Spanish here.

They sure do make a good dip, though.

Thanks for coming over today!

Hey Jo...
Don't eat enough to get sick, sweetie. We can't have that!

Thanks, my friend, for coming over today!

MamaHen said...

I LOVE avocados! Happy Thanksgiving to you Hermit! I hope you have a great day with family.

HermitJim said...

Hey Anne...
I do hope that you and the captain have a nice holiday!

Thanks so much for coming over today!

Dizzy-Dick said...

My wife and I absolutely love them and eat them quite often. In fact, had them last night for supper with cottage cheese. I like a little salt and onion with mine. Thanks for the tip about them being poisonous to pets. My three pups are always begging for goodies off the table at meal times.

HermitJim said...

Hey Dizzy...
I don't even know if they would eat an avocado, but we wouldn't want to take a chance.

I like mine mainly in guacamole , but raw with some lemon and salt is good also!

Thanks for coming over today!

Felinae said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.


Rob said...

The avocado is a berry? A strawberry is not?

I think the easiest way for me to deal with this is berry-fruit-vegetable thing is to just ignore it and not worry!

I like avocados sometimes, guacamole usually and sometimes sliced in a sandwich.
I saw a recipe where they baked an egg in the hole the seed left for breakfast. Looked good but I never think about it when I have a ripe one sitting here.

Good choice of topic!