Avocados, also known as alligator pears, are a fruit native to Central Mexico that are actually part of the same flowering plant family as cinnamon. The large stone that has to be removed from the avocado before you eat it is actually the seed, and if you keep it in the cut avocado - or put it into a pot of homemade guacamole - you can stop the avocado flesh from turning brown. Nifty, eh? We've got tons of clever uses for avocado below, including a recipe for retro green goddess dressing, avocado icing and even delicious avocado and chocolate fudge!

Avocados are grown widely across the world in a number of Mediterranean cultures, on trees that grow up to 20 metres tall - but you can also grow them in your kitchen with an avocado stone, a glass of water and some toothpicks. There are a number of different types of avocado pears, Hass being one of the most popular as they tend to have mild, juicy flesh with a tough skin that withstands damage.

You can also put avocado into sweet dishes, too. The creamy, juicy texture of an avocado makes it a really brilliant alternative to butter in cakes and bakes, but it can also be used in icing, smoothies, fudge and much, much more. Avocado can be mashed, pureed, grilled and it's delicious both warm and cold, making it one of the most versatile veggies there is!

Take a look above for more brilliant recipes, including a recipe for avocado soup, stuffed avocado and an avocado and coconut smoothie.