Standing on the deck, our group of 11 huddled into our jackets as the ship turned towards the looming volcano, Stromboli. The Captain had promised (with reservations) a fantastic show if we made our way up to the bridge at 3:15 AM - not an easy feat after a few glasses of the ever flowing champagne that had been served at dinner aboard the Seabourn Legend.
However this seemed to be one of those not to be missed, once in a lifetime moments that deserved the effort of pulling myself out of the warm bed. And it was. Some 20 minutes after arriving to the bridge, the Captain began a short apology, saying perhaps the volcano may be sleeping as well... and with that comment the sky lit up a brilliant orange as a fireball of lava launched into the air and then dripped down the sides of the volcano. And then it did it again... and again!! And it was one of the coolest things I've ever seen. Truly, a once in a lifetime moment forever embedded in my memory.
Thankfully, some experiences in life are equally as fabulous, but not reserved for only once in a lifetime. For example... Smashed Avocado Toast. Add a few chopped up tomatoes drizzled with Italian olive oil, a sprinkle of salt and lots and lots of pepper and you have the: Best. Breakfast. Ever.
You may be aware of my complete and true California avocado love, but my family somehow doesn't embrace the fruit on quite the same level. They like avocado, but I don't know as they would profess their undying love for it.
With health benefits abound, avocados bring high doses of vitamins K, C, B5, B6 and E in addition to folate and potassium, and living in California we have a near year round avocado season which keeps my avo bowl full at all times. And I work tirelessly to incorporate my beloved avocados into our daily meals.
Trying to fill my girl with various plants every day I suggested my favorite smashed avo toast and she wrinkled her nose. "No thanks..." was her answer, "How about toast with butter instead?"
But I insisted. I've had a small can of Nudo Olive Oil with Basil on my counter which had been sent to me for an upcoming post, and I've been experimenting with it. Being a food blogger often brings things into my life that I would never have otherwise known about, and this is one of those cases where I'm so happy I discovered this product! More to come.
In any case... we tossed our organic farmers market cherry tomatoes in the olive oil and gently spooned them over the smashed avocado (on nicely toasted sourdough bread - but I must say a nice hearty, seedy bread works beautifully as well), then topped it all off with a sprinkle of Pink Himalayan Salt and lots and lots of freshly ground pepper.
Liv gave me an "I'm not so sure about this look..." then hesitantly took a bite. Her eyes told the whole story as they opened wide and the worried lines on her forehead completely disappeared.
She took another bite, and then another, then looked up and said, "It's so good. It's just so, so good..." as she finished the piece and promptly asked for another.
An easy recipe that I almost didn't share, but I've had so many people say, "I've never thought of that!" that I wanted to get this out there.
This is one of those experiences that ranks up there with those once in a lifetime moments, but luckily this one you can enjoy everyday.
Smashed Avocado Toast with Oiled Tomatoes
Perfectly ripe avocado is key to this recipe... too hard and it won't have the right texture, too soft and it may have an off flavor. Fresh tomatoes also make a difference in the final experience, and a good, quality olive oil is a must.
1 slice toasted bread
1/2 ripe avocado
1/4 cup organic tomatoes (either sliced or chopped)
drizzled olive oil to taste (we used about 3/4 tsp)
Salt (I like Trader Joe's Himalayan Pink Salt )
Freshly Ground Pepper
Chop or slice the tomatoes and drizzle with oil and toss. Set aside.
Toast the bread (Liv loves sourdough, but we also love a nice seedy bread). Scoop the avocado onto the bread and smash with a fork. Top with the oiled tomatoes and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Enjoy!
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