I give a lot of lip service to laziness masquerading as a commitment to simplicity, but the truth is that sometimes if you invest a little extra effort, you can reap massive rewards. Case in point: avocado toast.
You’ll recall that the first position I took on avocado toast was one of simplicity.
I declared that all you needed for delicious avocado toast was an avocado and a piece of toast.
I stand by these ingredients but my interpretation of avocado toast has started to evolve. I would be a bit of a charleton if I purported to still be making avocado toast this way.
My resolve began to falter a couple months ago when I was hanging out with my cousin’s wife, a Mexico/California native who has been eating avocado toast since way before hipsters in San Francisco were charging $5 for it. She shook her head at my tales of eating artisanal avocado toast at brunch spots all over the city.
“All you need for avocado toast is lime juice and sea salt,” she said.
Filled with shame, I just looked at my feet. I had never put lime juice or sea salt on my avocado toast at home. Could these simple additions be what kept my home avocado toast from being as delicious as a cafe’s avocado toast?
I was already using high level bread—Aunt Millie’s Best Grains 12 Whole Grains—so I knew I had the upper leg there. My next step was to seek out some new salt. I chose some pink himalayan sea salt and I grabbed a lime while I was at the grocery store.
Fancy toast, thou art happening in mine own kitchen.
It turns out that the sea salt and the lime make a huge difference. The lime brings out the taste of the avocado without compromising its creaminess and the salt does what salt does best: satisfies that craving for something savory.
I’ve added a little ground black pepper both for taste and visual appeal, and avocado toast has gone from something I eat for breakfast alone in my kitchen on Wednesday mornings to something I serve when my friends are over for brunch on the weekends. I’m still eating it at my laptop on weekday mornings, of course; I just take it to the balcony and hold it with my pinky in the air now.
Katie Pruitt is not a chef or even a home cook. She is a writer with a lifelong passion for toast. Although she grew up just a couple miles from the Aunt Millie's bakery in Fort Wayne, she now has loaves of Aunt Millie's bread flown to her in San Francisco on a regular basis.