If you've been following the Dharma Kitchen for any length of time, you've probably seen recipes from the amazing Tess Masters, known for her whiz-bang use of the blender; for this she's also known as The Blender Girl. She's published a few cookbooks, including one we featured a bit ago called The Blender Girl Smoothies, which was, as you can guess, all about the combos you can make with the humble smoothie, a beverage that many of us start our day with for a good healthy jolt, or drink at other times of the day for often for specific health-oriented purposes.
Her latest is called The Perfect Blend: 100 Blender Recipes to Energize & Revitalize (Ten Speed Press) and they're gluten-free and vegan. The chapters are organized based on a desired outcome: low carb, alkaline forming, energy, detox, weight loss, and so forth. Here, she tackles all different meals, not just drinkable ones—although it wouldn't be a book from Masters without those—that you can make using your blender. The book was released a couple of months ago, but to me, it feels like the perfect purchase as spring looms on the horizon and our bodies are just asking for more green things from the earth. She's generously permitted many of us to share some of her recipes through social media and the web, and so I reprint a killer one here, for Avocado Avenger. There's something magical about the combination of these flavors, and let's face it, any time there's an avocado, plus cilantro and lime, I'm in. I know lots of you feel that way, too. This recipe appears in her chapter Anti-Inflammatory.
Big thanks to my friend Jody, for the photo and suggestion that inspired this dish. Eating at a café in Sydney, she snapped a shot of an avocado del sur and sent it with the caption, “Your chimichurri would be so good on this!” The alkalizing, anti-inflammatory ace that resulted is a showstopper. The lime juice, herbs, and chile of the chimichurri meld with the buttery notes of the avocado and the tang of the tomato for a beautiful bite of bliss.
SERVES 4 TO 8; CHIMICHURRI MAKES 1¼ CUPS (300ML)
- ¾ cup (180ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 1½ tablespoons finely grated lime zest
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1½ tablespoons minced garlic (about 4 cloves)
- 1 teaspoon natural salt
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
- ¾ cup (30g) firmly packed mint leaves, plus more to garnish
- ¾ cup (30g) firmly packed cilantro leaves, plus more to garnish
- ½ cup (24g) firmly packed finely chopped chives, plus more to garnish
- 4 avocados, halved, pitted, and peeled
- ¼ cup (35g) peeled and finely diced English cucumber
- ¼ cup (35g) seeded and finely diced tomatoes
- ½ cup (55g) shaved zucchini ribbons (½ small zucchini)
- ¼ cup (70g) seeded and finely diced watermelon, plus more to taste
- ¼ cup (35g) raw sprouted watermelon seeds
To make the chimichurri, throw the olive oil, lime zest, lime juice, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes into your blender and blast on high for 10 to 20 seconds, until the sauce is emulsified and the zest, garlic, and pepper flakes have been completely pulverized. Add the mint, cilantro, and chives, and pulse on high for a few seconds, then on low for a few seconds just to break down the herbs, but keeping the dressing very loose and not completely blended.
On a large platter, lay out the zucchini ribbon booster. Then place the avocado halves cut sides up on top of the zucchini, like boats. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of the chimichurri into each pit hole. Next, place 1 teaspoon diced tomato and 1 teaspoon diced cucumber into each pit hole or on top of each avocado. Place 1 teaspoon of the watermelon booster on top. With a squeeze bottle or a spoon, drizzle more chimichurri sauce onto the avocados. Top with a sprinkle of mint, cilantro, chives, and the watermelon seed booster. Sprinkle with the remaining tomato and cucumber and with the remaining (or more) watermelon booster if desired. Enjoy immediately.
Nutritional facts (per serving, based on 8 servings) calories 350 kcal | fat 35 g | saturated fat 5 g | sodium 301.5 mg | carbs 13.9 g | fiber 7.4 g |sugars 1.2 g | protein 2.5 g | calcium 30.3 mg | iron 1 mg
CREDIT: Reprinted with permission from The Perfect Blend, copyright 2016 Tess Masters. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Photography copyright 2016 by Anson Smart.
Avocado Avenger from Tess Masters's cookbook The Perfect Blend (Ten Speed Press). Photography copyright 2016 by Anson Smart.