How Avocado Toast Broke the Internet
Updated: Nov 18, 2018
By all accounts, a certain generational group is obsessed. With avocado toast, that is. Healthy for you, slightly indulgent, an oh-so Instagrammable. With #avocadotoast having over 200,000 posts and countless other hashtags referring to the trendy food phenomenon, avocado toast has taken the Internet by storm.
The concept of serving avocado on bread is nothing new. As far back at the 1500s, Spanish settlers have been spreading the luscious fruit on the bread they brought to Mexico. In 1937, The New Yorker published a recipe for “Avocado on Toast.” And Bon Appetit did the same in 1956. Avocado toast as we know it today started to take hold in the ‘90s when boutique cafes began serving up elevated fare on their brunch menus. And that obsessed demographic? Well, it’s the Millennials who broke the Internet—and their bank accounts. A multimillionaire real estate investor advised the younger generation, “Stop buying avocado toast if you want to buy a house.” Apparently, the extravagance of avocado toast in its modern form with chic salts, extra-virgin olive oil and artisanal bread, is crippling the Millennial housing market.
Americans spend nearly one million dollars a month on avocados. That’s a lot of green. But there is no question they are absolutely delicious. And so very good for you. Nutritional all-stars, avocados have twice the potassium of a banana, they’re packed with fiber, they’re a terrific source of healthy unsaturated fat, promote good heart health and have powerful anti-aging properties.
Luckily, the Hass (pronounced like “pass”) variety is widely available and, with its extra creamy texture, is ideal for spreading on toast. If you can wait the day or two it takes to ripen, choose avocados while they’re still unripe and hard, lessening the likelihood that they’ve been bruised. In the case of Hass, they’re green when still unripe. A ripe Hass avocado will be black with a little give when pressed. Not too soft and not too firm but somewhere in between. It takes a little practice but you’ll get an innate feel for it in no time. Never refrigerate the unripe fruit. And it’s an old wives’ tale that you can prevent the exposed flesh from turning brown by leaving the pit intact. To prevent oxidation, remove the pit and tightly seal the fruit in plastic wrap.
There is no denying it. Luscious avocado spread on bread is healthy, hip, and ever so slightly indulgent. So go spread this amazing fruit all over your fancy toast and, if you’re so inclined, spread it all over your Instagram feed. A feast for the eyes!
One would think you don’t need a recipe to make avocado toast (you don’t), but I must say there is an art to achieving both its simplicity and perfection.
My tips: make sure you choose a sturdy, flavorful bread fairly thickly sliced, enough salt and citrus to bring out the flavor of the avocado, and premium olive oil.
2 large slices sturdy bread, thickly sliced
1 ripe avocado, halved and pitted
extra-virgin olive oil
half lemon or lime
salt and freshly ground pepper
dash red pepper flakes
1. Toast the bread until browned and crisp. Drizzle the hot toast with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Using the back of a fork, roughly mash a ½ avocado into each slice of toast, keeping it chunky. Sprinkle with a little more salt and black pepper and squeeze the juice of a lemon or lime on top. Finish with a dash of red pepper flakes and serve immediately.