Opening Coconuts 1992, pastel on paper, 20 x 30 inches (Hiroki and Miho)
The enormous old avocado tree next to the house has been delivering its fruit to the doorstep here in Holualoa. It is thrilling to find huge avocados, barely grazed from their fall, waiting to be made into guacamole and added to every salad and salsa.
Don Ed Hardy has been with us to make prints with Bud. He’s a great help in eating the plentitude of avocados and in adding three lovely prints to the Shark’s Ink. collection.
But there are so many avocados! After a week of this bounty, I have reconciled to discarding all but the perfect ones. Paging through my little Hawaii cooking notebook I found several avocado recipes I had forgotten. So, for dinner with John and Debby, I made a cold avocado soup (recipe in How I Learned to Cook…), first made with Bob Kushner. Simple to make in the blender, it is a combination of one large avocado, coconut milk, yogurt, jalapeño, and spices. Very more-ish.
I made a focaccia to serve alongside. Next came a favorite salad I make only in Holualoa ─ Papaya and Shrimp. We eat papayas each morning here and often in a salsa or this salad. They are a welcome addition to our Hawaii diet.
For the salad, one and a half papayas, cubed, a julienned cucumber, a pound of cooked shrimp, avocado chunks, and macadamia nuts are chilled, then tossed with the dressing:
3 tablespoons of lime juice, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 tablespoons Thai fish sauce, 1/2 teaspoon Chinese chili sauce, (or a big pinch of hot pepper flakes), 2 teaspoons finely chopped ginger, 2 minced green onions, and a small handful of cilantro, chopped.
The original recipe in Pacific Flavors called for a diced red pepper but I didn’t have one. Serve over a bed of lettuces or spinach.
Another recipe, for an avocado chocolate pudding from my friend Cydney, awaits another dinner party. Meanwhile, who wants guacamole?