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the promise has been kept

Curried Avocado with Mustard Seeds // Delightful CrumbI am thinking today of these mid-season days, this time of winter into spring, this season between seasons, the in between. It’s so different here in the Bay, with the sun beating down much of the time and temperatures beginning to climb and things blooming all around. Our markets are full of asparagus, lingering citrus, avocados, bunches of flowers, even strawberries.

But I still remember what March is like in Michigan — the melting of snow only to clear space for another storm, the chill that won’t quit, the muddy ground that comes well before bright green grasses, the farmers markets closed for months. It’s brutal. I’m feeling for you, Midwestern friends, and I want to pass over a bit of hope.

Curried Avocado with Mustard Seeds // Delightful Crumb

I won’t belabor the analogy, but we’ve all experienced these times in our lives just as we do in nature, and this has nothing to do with the climate of the cities in which we reside. We have seasons between seasons, transitional times that form a bridge from one thing to the next, weeks when we feel our whole lives are consumed with waiting for the good that has been promised though it seems it will never come.

But it does. It always, always does.

Green blades of grass will poke up from beneath the snow, tulips will emerge from the muddy earth, warmth will come and send away the chill. Life will roll along, good things will come, we will be rewarded for those long months of patience in the cold.

Curried Avocado with Mustard Seeds // Delightful Crumb Curried Avocado with Mustard Seeds // Delightful CrumbUntil then, tenacious Midwestern pals, and toasty warm Californians with local avocados to spare, and everyone in between and beyond, I propose avocados. Specifically, avocados mashed and placed atop pita or crackers or chips, with a kick of heat and flavor to keep you going until you find, once again, that the promise has been kept.

P.S. I’m so pleased to have a story featured in the new issue of Remedy Quarterlywhich is all about risk. I tell the story of our cross-country move and share a recipe for a fantastic caramelized onion, kale and potato galette. It just so happens that Kelly, founder and designer of the magazine, just made a similar move to San Francisco from Brooklyn, and so I can now attest that she is as lovely as she seems online! To read my story and see her talent on paper, I encourage you to order a copy of Issue 12. And if you’re new here by way of Remedy, welcome! I’d love for you to say hello.

Curried Avocado with Mustard Seeds // Delightful Crumb

Curried Avocado Dip with Mustard Seeds

Adapted from Heidi Swanson‘s Super Natural Every Day

The mustard seeds, curry and chile used here add a really tasty and somewhat unexpected kick. The resulting dip / avocado mash / “guacamole” is lovely with tortilla chips, crackers, toasted pita bread, warm tortillas and so on — you get the picture.

2 ripe avocados

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, plus additional

1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

about 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil or extra-virgin coconut oil

1 heaped teaspoon black or brown mustard seeds

1 small yellow onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, finely minced

1 heaped teaspoon curry powder

1 small serrano chile, seeded and minced

Maldon sea salt, for sprinkling

Cut the avocados in half, remove their pits and scoop the flesh into a small bowl. Add the lime juice, fine grain salt and most of the cilantro. Mash the mixture a bit with a fork, leaving it quite chunky. Set aside.

In a small skillet over medium heat, warm the oil. When it is hot, add the mustard seeds. They will sputter and pop; cover the pan with a lid if necessary. When the sputtering stops, or after about a minute, stir in the onion. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Add the garlic, curry powder and chile. After just 10 seconds, remove the pan from the heat.

Add the avocado mixture to the warm, spiced onions and gently combine. Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with Maldon sea salt, an extra squeeze of lime juice and the remaining cilantro. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Yield: about 2 cups

7 Comments (Add Yours)

  1. From another Midwestern transplant, I hear this. It’s still chilly and definitely an in-between here in Nashville, but it’s such a far, far cry from the Marches of my Chicago life that you’ve reminded me how glad I am to live here after all. Also, how glad I am that in-betweens don’t last forever and spring eventually comes. I love that truth.

    I also love avocados. : )

  2. Love the look of this, different to other avocado dips I usually see. And in a cute bowl, too!

  3. I’m in the Chicago area. I am feeling the cold. In fact, I am braving the cold in my light fleeces and corduroy jackets because I absolutely refuse to put my winter coat back on. Thank you for sending hope in the form of avocados — one of my favorite foods. That pretty green color is certainly a good reminder that Yes! The trees will have leaves again and there will be flowers and vegetables and grass! Someday. :)

  4. I adore that book and how have I never noticed this dip?!?! I love all things avocado. Happy Spring to you, miss. Anxious to read your article. So great. Congrats.

  5. Oh I’ll have to check out this issue of Remedy. Love Kelly and everything she’s done with it. Also? I have both that bowl and little plate, so this entire post made me feel like I was at my own table … not a bad thing at all :) Happy Spring from Seattle!

  6. Belated congratulations to you on the Remedy Quarterly feature! Such a dope little publication. Cannot wait to see it :) And yes to impending spring and ANYTHING with a smushed up avocado in it. Yum.

  7. thank you, stacy for your beautiful words!