Chili-Stuffed Avocados

Serves 6. Recipe is from J.M. Hirsch.

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large yellow onion, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 pound lean ground beef

1/2 pound loose sweet Italian sausage

15-ounce can tomato sauce

6 avocados, halved and pitted (leave the skins on)

2 cups shredded Monteray Jack cheese

Sour cream, to serve

Fresh cilantro leaves, to serve

1. In a medium saucepan over medium-high, heat the oil. Add the onion and garlic, then saute for 4 minutes. Add the chili powder, paprika, cumin and cayenne, then cook for another minute. Add the beef and sausage, then saute until browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Add the tomato sauce and bring to a simmer.

2. While the chili comes to a simmer, heat the grill to medium.

3. With the cut side up, gently press each avocado half against the counter to slightly flatten the bottom to allow it to sit without tilting. Alternatively, use a knife to trim off a thin slice of the rounded bottom.

4. Once the chili is at a simmer, spoon a heaping mound of it into the cavity of each avocado half. Arrange the filled avocados on a rimmed baking sheet for carrying to the grill. Top each with cheese, then bring to the grill. Carefully set each avocado half on the grill grates, close the grill and cook for 5 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and browning.

5. Arrange 2 avocado halves per serving plate, then top each with a bit of sour cream and cilantro.

Nutrition information per serving: 750 calories; 560 calories from fat (75 percent of total calories); 63 g fat (19 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 95 mg cholesterol; 920 mg sodium; 25 g carbohydrate; 15 g fiber; 6 g sugar; 28 g protein.