Culture

PSA: Here Is How You Can Pit An Avocado And Not Give Yourself Avocado Hand

So yes, there have been multiple reports of people injuring their hands while trying to cut and remove the pits of avocados. But this should not keep us away from one of the Latin American fruits par excellence. The avocado tree probably has its origin in South Central Mexico. In strict terms, the avocado is a berry with a very large pit in the middle. 

Avocado is one of the great gifts of the Americas to the world, as commercial production has expanded all throughout the world. The tree benefits from war, Mediterranean climates and thrives in semiarid landscapes. In Australia, for example, avocado, locally known as simply “avo” is perhaps the most popular fruit. Avo on toast is a staple in cafes and homes all through the country. 

However, the expansion of avocado has also brought some minor tragedies with it due to the lack of experience that some home cooks have in the arts of fruit chopping.

Credit: animationblock / Giphy

Yes, we are actually not kidding: avocado slicing has spilled more blood than a serial killer in a slasher film!

A nicely sliced avocado has got to be one of the most beautiful sights on planet Earth! We understand why people want to get it just right. 

Credit: the_chopping_block / Instagram

Seriously. This fleshy fruit gives us beautiful hues of green when opened and its firm meat allows us to shape in in all kinds of interesting ways. Close your eyed and imagine a bowl of perfect avocado cubes… you will smell a fresh tortilla heating on the comal. Taquito de aguacate, anyone?

So first things first: the infamous “Avocado Hand.”

Credit: @gabbytakesnaps / Twitter

This seems to be a sort of accidental outbreak of lack of common sense among gringos worldwide (and by gringos we also mean British, Canadian, Australian and European folk). According to Food & Wine, “approximately 8,900 emergency room visits in 2018 could be directly tied to avocados”. That is like a small town of people running around the kitchen like headless chickens holding a paper towel to their hands and screaming “Oh-My-God” while shedding a tear. 

And no, it is not an urban legend, Avocado Hand actually exists.

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So contrary to, say, apples, avocados have a soft skin and soft flesh. And contrary to, say, watermelon, they do not have a hard bit to get through. Some people underestimate how easily the knife will cut through the flesh and end up putting too much pressure on the knife while keeping their palms or fingers directly opposite. The result: blades penetrate through human flesh, savaging skin and painting a symphony of crimson pain. But avocado is soft and cuts easily, and everyone should know that. In Mexico, the government once financed a campaign to promote avocado consumption, and called the fruit “the butter of vegetables”. 

Some people are just displaying their injuries like war wounds to be proud of

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In this day and age of selfies and a sometimes unhealthy obsession with self-branding, some are actually publishing photos of their avocado hands as if they were a badge of honor. Seriously, ladies and dudes, no one wants to see those stitches and gooey stuff coming out of your fingers, especially not on a closeup. Please just don’t! 

And even get tattoos to celebrate the accident.

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Well, we actually have to admit this one is pretty funny and kinda cool. We love the minimalist outline and the dramatic nature of this skin art piece. It is Shakespearean and hipster in equal measures. 

So avocado hand pins are a thing, apparently.

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Do you know how Boy and Girl Scouts wear all sorts of badges on their uniforms to celebrate their achievements? Well, if you had an avocado hand incident and for some reason, you are proud of it, you can wear this pin. Alternatively, you could also wear it as a reminder of your encounter with the cuchillo, so you remember to be very careful when cutting and pitting a delicious avocado. 

Use a spoon, people.

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So here’s the deal. Using a knife to take the seed out might look cool, but it is not for everyone. Do it safely and please use a spoon and just scoop the seed out. You might lose some of the flesh, but that’s OK (better than losing a finger). 

This technique is for expert knife-handlers only, so don’t attempt at home. Frankly, this is a show off technique for mamones.

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Seriously, this technique is a bit silly even for experienced cooks. 

If you are feeling creative, pixelate your avocado.

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One of the newest hipster trends in the cafe industry is to serve pixelated avocados, which basically look like this. Just use an extremely thin and sharp knife, place the avocado on board, get your fingers away from the bottom of the fruit and cut it in cubes, little by little, stopping just before you hit the skin. The results are fun and give us una onda de los ochentas

And some people take their carving obsession to the extreme: introducing avocado art.

Credit: theavocadoshow / Instagram

Just wow. This is already an Instagram trend and features some pretty dedicated avocado lovers. The fruit gets all-black quickly after being cut open when exposed to room temperature, so the most experiences avocado carvers perfect their skills in walk-in fridges. Yes, it is pretty, but with all due respect, it is also a little pointless. 

But if you think you just can’t slice an avocado without injuring yourself, you can get one of these contraptions.

Credit: takemymoney / Instagram

If you have to trust or faith in your abilities, you can buy one of these plastic utensils that cut, slice and pit avocados in a safe, child-friendly way. No blades or pointy ends to be scared of! No one if judging if you get one! This is actually a good tool to get the chamaquitos to help in the kitchen. Guacamole para todos!

But always remember avocados are not to blame.

As they say, don’t shoot the messenger. The humble avocado is just the conduit through which an entire generation of foodies has come to the realization that they suck at handling knives. We also have to be aware of the fact that thousands of farmers and workers depend on avocado crops. In the state of Michoacan, in central Mexico, many families survive working in big avocado plantations. This state has been ravaged by cartel-related violence and the avocado industry is one of the few stable sectors in the industry. So think twice before affecting the industry. 

By the way, the word avocado comes from aguacate, which comes from an indigenous word that means testicles… you are welcome.

Credit: makeitmove / Giphy

Yes, the English word avocado comes from the Spanish aguacate, which in turn comes from the Nahuatl word āhuacatl. This word, you guessed it, means “testicle”. This is probably due to the likeness of the fruit and the male body part. We dare you to eat your next avocado and not think about this. Smashed avocado, compadres? Ouch!

READ: Avocado Hand Is Sending People To The ER In Record Numbers And Abuelas Everywhere Are Left Asking Why

A Woman’s Obsession With Hot Cheetos Just Got Her Into Some Hot Water With TSA

Culture

A Woman’s Obsession With Hot Cheetos Just Got Her Into Some Hot Water With TSA

Look, it’s no news that the world is currently undergoing a real crisis when it comes to Hot Cheetos. Not only does it seem that there are never enough, but it also seems that we cannot GET enough. From inspiring fashion ranges (like Forever 21s)  to sparking all kinds of similar spin-offs in the snack and chip world, there’s no doubt that the spicy, somehow simultaneously soft and crispy treat has taken over. Which presents new problems. 

One Twitter user by the name of Emily Mei says that an obsession with Hot Cheetos actually led to her being stopped and checked by TSA.

The Instagram model shared a post to her Twitter account highlighting one of the more bizarre moments involving Hot Cheetos that TSA has likely ever seen.

According to her post, last year, Mei had loaded up her luggage with 20 bags worth of Hot Cheetos to bring to friends who were having a hard time finding them in Korea.  “For everyone who’s asking why i had so many bags of Hot Cheetos, apparently it’s hard to get in korea so my friends always ask me to bring it for them LOL,” she wrote in a post about the incident. 

It’s not the first time Mei has opened up about her Hot Cheetos obsession and struggle.

Recently the model shared a post to her Twitter page that featured her decked out in Hot Cheetos-inspired clothes and accessories. Wearing a denim skirt and jacket with Hot Cheetos flames on them, the model shared the post and wrote “No one: Literally not a single person: Me: This is how much i love Hot Cheetos.” The Hot Cheetos-loving photoshoot also featured her wearing a Hot Cheetos bag and glasses. Ultimately the look was complete fire and I am here for a Hot Cheetos campaign featuring Mei as an advocate and spokesperson.

Over the summer she also shared images of her wearing the latest Instagram obsession: the Hot Cheetos onesie.

Mei’s outfit came directly from Forever 21 and featured a Hot Cheetos one-piece bathing suit and coin purse. TBH the look was fire and even if the hot season is cooling down for most of us this ice of continent, it’s always summer somewhere and this look is worth the travel for a similarly cute photo-op.

Feeling inspired to try a similar look? Forever 21’s Hot Cheetos line is still up and ready to give you the most fuego looks of the year.

For the cutest looks of the summer, check out Flamin Hot Cheetos Graphic Jersey which will give you all of the best vibes for your Go! Fight! Win! game days.

FOREVER 21

This jersey mesh top features an embroidered “Flamin’ Hot” design and a boxy silhouette. For just $24.90, it might saying Flamin Hot on the front but there’s no doubt your heart is stiched all over this baby.

Another Instagram shout-out to Cheetos featured Mei stacking up on and eating all of the Hot Cheetos snacks once again.

Leading up to a trip to Coachella, the model posted an image Instagram standing in the chip aisle and holding onto two giant bags of Cheetos. “Did someone say Coachella diet ….? See y’all tomorrow if i don’t die from eating all these snacks.”

Of course, it didn’t take long for others to share the many other forms of snacks that they’re willing to smuggle onto a flight.

“Reminds me of exactly a year ago when TSA had to search through one by one every single one of my airheads,” wrote @TheBMWilson.

Soon enough, Mei’s story took on a new life with users sharing the various snacks they’ve endured at TSA search for.

“I remember when they literally made me miss my flight over some Costa Rican coffee !” Wrote @sheaintyohoe

One user shared all of the snacks they tried to get onto a flight proving when it comes to snacks USA kind of is on top.

TBH there’s no denying that we’ve been at the rock bottom for some time, folks (2016 to be exact) but these bags full of snacks made in the U.S. are proof that we really do know how to hold it down when it comes to snack obsessions. 

But here’s the important question: will Mei put an end to her part in the world’s Hot Cheetos obsession? 

Clearly that answer is not very likely.

From Rodent Hair To Poop, The FDA Legally Allows Factories To Have A Small Amount Of These In Your Food

Culture

From Rodent Hair To Poop, The FDA Legally Allows Factories To Have A Small Amount Of These In Your Food

yoshitherat / Instagram

If this is the first you’re hearing of this, you might want to just plan on skipping your next meal. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sets a legal minimum for the amount of “food defects” a consumer can reasonably come to expect from their food purchases. Growing up Latino, the bulk of your food probably came from Costco, where every apple is encased in plastic and the food feels pretty sterile. Never have we found a bug in anything from the holy grail of Costco.

No matter where you do your grocery shopping, often, you can’t even see the rodent hairs or disembodied insects in your food. But the FDA knows it’s there, and the agency is trying to keep your cafecito at a minimum of just 10 mg of animal poop per pound.

Along with a small dose of mierda, you’re also looking at 4% to 6% of your coffee beans being moldy or insect-infested.

@thetakeout / Twitter

Talk about a witches’ brew. Your cafecito brew in the morning is basically the same potion our ancestors made for their enemies. Café Mierda, que rico. It makes sense though. Coffee is grown in the humid, tropical countries of much of our people. That mold creates mycotoxins which are toxic chemicals, the most common of which in coffee is a powerful carcinogen. The second most common mycotoxin found in coffee is Ochratochin A, which can deplete dopamine and cause cell death in your brain. Some say that we’re exposed to small amounts of toxins no matter what we do, but others suggest listening to your body. We all react differently to different stimuli.

Worse still is that there might be up to an eyedropper full of blood and pus in that leche.

@SnellKat / Twitter

Cows that are used for dairy are kept forcibly impregnated their whole lives so that they can produce milk. Once they begin the very natural process of lactation, their calves are sent away, and they’re hooked up to metal milking machines. The irritation from those machines causes mastitis, which is an infection of the udder. That means that those machines are milking infectious pus along with the milk. According to the USDA, 16.5% of cows used for their milk are suffering from mastitis.

This is so common that the FDA legally allows up to 750 million pus cells in every liter of milk. That’s about an eyedropper full of pus. Cafe sin leche, por favor.

Insects might not perk up your spices, but they’re there anyway.

@Canoopsy / Twitter

Paprika is allowed to be comprised of up to 20% mold. Let’s face it. Latinos are more comfortable with mold than your average Becky. We just slice that moldy part off the bread and make toast like it’s a no-brainer. For some reason, when we learn the government is allowing us to eat mold without our consent, it feels gross. If you’re not grossed out yet, you should know your typical spice jar of paprika is likely to have 225 tiny limbs or heads of dismembered insects, and over 30 rodent hairs.

This all makes sense if you try to reconnect to our food system.

@ChefDLewis / Twitter

Access to food on a daily basis looks like walking down illuminated, refrigerated grocery aisles, and choosing between plastic wrapped chicken breast, or plastic-wrapped Beyond burgers. Root vegetables like carrots are being misted every twenty minutes and look so clean and fresh. When we remember where, or who, all these products come from, it’s easier to imagine why insects may have hopped a ride from the farm to to your plate. Produce is of the earth, and harvest season may be the buggiest season of the year, depending on the crop.

That said, food safety specialist Ben Chapmen told CNN that he looks at insects in your food “as a yuck factor versus a risk factor. Insect parts are gross, but they don’t lead to foodborne illnesses.” More dangerous for human health is when plastic, stone or metal ends up in a food harvest, which is why processed food goes under x-rays and metal detectors.

You can control the amount of feces and rodent hair in your food when you buy as fresh food as possible.

@asolitarypagan / Twitter

Instead of using a can of corn, buy fresh corn on the cob. You might just see the insects crawling out of the cob as you start to peel the corn, and rinse away all the mierda you can. Technically, the FDA is more concerned with regulating the amount of insect larvae in your cans of sweet corn. That said, 5% of corn husks used for tamales are expected to be moldy and insect-infested. Careful with your fresh tortillas though, because the FDA allows an average of one whole insect per quarter cup of cornmeal. Is it racism? We can’t say.