National Library of Jamaica
The avocado, popularly called pear, has its roots in Central and South America and Mexico. It is believed to have reached Jamaica in the early sixteenth century.
The avocado tree grows generally to twenty metres. The tree can bear hundreds of fruits.
Fruits vary in size and shape, round, oval, pear-shaped and vary in shades of green or purple.
Avocado has a high protein content and is 5 to 25 per cent fat.
'Pear season' is normally August to December.
Eater raw mainly and is enjoyed as a compliment to ackee and saltfish, breadfruit, bulla and bammy.
Back in the nineteenth century avocado was spread on bread in the space of butter hence it was known as 'Midshipman's Butter' or 'Subaltern's Butter'.
Chiefly eaten breakfast or at lunch.
19th Century Recipe
“They can be eaten at desert prepared at table by masking the pulp (after removing the skin and seed) in your plate, adding sugar, nutmeg and a taste of sherry all mixed together.”
Source: Sullivan, Caroline. The Jamaica Cookery Book: Three Hundred and Twelve Simple Cookery Receipts and Household Hints. Kingston: Aston. W. Gardner, 1893.
12 oz. cottage cheese
2 tbs. lemon juice
1 small onion
1 avocado, diced
Dash of salt
Blend all together on medium speed. Chill and serve.
Yield 2 cups
Source: Donaldson, Enid. The Real Taste of Jamaica. Kingston: Ian Randle, 2000.
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