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I love avocado. It is simply a perfect food.

Before I was vegan, I ate it sparingly because the fat content terrified me. Once I shifted my diet, heart healthy fats like those from avocado, olive oil, nuts and seeds became staples of my diet.

To my surprise, they brought only really benefits like a strong good cholesterol number, a well-functioning metabolism and absolutely zero weight gain.

One of my favorite dishes to make with this green nugget of goodness is a salad with hearts of palm. If you can't find the infused orange olive oil I refer to, just add a splash (1 tsp or 2) of fresh orange juice to the recipe below, along with the oil.

14.4 oz can, hearts of palm, drained (cut on a bias)

1/2 c sliced and seeded cherry tomatoes

1 TBSP flat leaf parsley, chopped

1 avocado, diced

Lemon juice of 1/2 lemon

1 TBSP Orange infused olive oil (or alternative)

Salt to taste

Slice the hearts of palm on the bias and, with your finger, remove the inner stalk. Place all pieces in a medium sized mixing bowl. Add the tomatoes (seeded so they don't get too soft), avocado and lemon juice and toss gently so the avocado keeps it's fresh color. Next add the oil (and juice if necessary) and salt to taste and toss gently again. Refrigerate for an hour before serving.

Now, if you want a really simple guacamole recipe that's a hit every time, it's this easy. Store-bought is easier but it is just never worth it:

Mash 3 ripe avocados in a bowl. Add the juice of one lime, kosher salt to taste, and a handful of freshly chopped cilantro. You won't need Tupperware for this dish because you will never have any left over!

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