As January rolls on and gym appearances dwindle, diners must look to incorporate healthy foods in their diet in the most unlikely of settings. While alcoholic beverages outside of red wine are not known for their actual health benefits, one drink doctor has found a unique way to incorporate avocados into a tasty beverage. Known for their abundance of monounsaturated fat — the kind of fat your heart is cool with —avocados give cocktails an edge other fruits can’t offer.
“Avocado is great for texture. Often described as buttery and velvety, it replaces the heavier cream in a traditional batida,” notes Rich Woods, chief mixologist at SushiSamba (87 7th Ave South; 212-691-7885). The classic Brazilian batida – which translates to milkshake in cocktail speak – is usually made with milk but occasionally with heavier ingredients like condensed milk or even sour cream. By using avocado, Woods was able to maintain a creamy, thick texture while lowering cholesterol at the same time. Woods also enjoys fashioning a drink with the green fruit because of its rich, nutty taste, and the addition of a dry chocolate spirit was a natural pairing.
Another element that makes the drink particularly enticing is its hue. Although colorful drinks are typically associated with the super-sweet and sour ones you’d only dare to drink on a tropical vacation, Woods explains he has a different reason that a drink that could easily pass as part of a juice cleanse wound up on his menu. “Drinking is an experience. A well-garnished and presented drink is like window dressing. It entices us and sends messages to our brain to prepare for something good.”
If you’ve recently purchased a refrigerator full of avocados in order to get healthy, check out the recipe for Woods’ avocado batida:
Avocado Batida by Rich Woods
1 1/2 ounces cachaça
1 1/2 ounces avocado puree
3/4 ounce orgeat syrup (Woods uses Monin)
2 bar spoons of Mozart Dry Chocolate
Bamboo leaf cone filled with maize cancha (corn nuts), for garnish
Peel, pit and blend eight avocados with eight and half ounces of water (this will make a batch of avocado puree you can use for multiple drinks). For each drink, add 1 1/2 ounces of the puree to a shaker. Mix all of the remaining ingredients with crushed ice. Garnish with a bamboo leaf cone filled with maize cancha.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 14, 2016