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Monday, 19 January 2015

Green Smoothies - my favourite breakfast drink!

Ummm….What exactly is a GREEN Smoothie?  I’m scared!
Don’t be scared.  Get excited!  A green smoothie is typically a smoothie made of about 60% fresh fruit and about 40% “greens” (green leafy vegetables.)  Drinking something that is green may sound a little questionable, but TRUST me, these smoothies (depending on what you put in them) can be truly delicious and are a great way to get more nutrition into your body.  Imagine consuming five or more servings of leafy greens for breakfast!  All things are possible with that magical blender of yours!

Some Examples of Greens:
Spinach, romaine, lettuces (green leaf, red leaf), kale, beet greens, celery (stalks and leaves), bok choy, cilantro, collard greens, swiss chard, parsley, dandelion leaves, plantain, lambsquarters, alfalfa greens, mint, and sprouts.  There are many more, but these are ones I have tried and like.

Some Examples of Fruits:
Apples, avocados, bananas, pears, apricots, cherries, cucumbers, dates, figs, peaches, plums, berries (strawberries, blueberries, huckleberries, saskatoon, cranberry, gooseberry, etc.) grapes, raisins, gogi berries, citrus fruits (oranges, lemons, mandarins, clementines, grapefruits), nectarines, peaches, guavas, passion fruits, papayas, coconuts, dragon fruits, durian, pineapples, lychee, mangos, watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, persimmon, rhubarb, kiwifruit...just to name a few!

Other Possible Smoothie Ingredients:
I love the taste of just fruit and greens, but occasionally I might add one of the following ingredients: spices such as cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, nutmeg, allspice;  Nut milks such as almond, hempseed or cashew milk; Nuts and seeds such as almonds, walnuts, pecans, hemp seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and chia seeds.
While fresh produce is usually best, frozen fruits are great to always have on hand in the freezer so that…shazam!…a smoothie could be whipped up at any moment and you don’t have to worry about rushing to the store!  Oh, the possibilities!  If you will be making smoothies for the entire day, you may help preserve them by adding a bit of lemon juice, or by blending your smoothie with ice to keep it cold.  Alternately, you could keep it stored in a cool thermos with some ice if you will take it with you to work or school.  It is also possible to freeze green smoothies if you will be traveling and will be unable to make fresh smoothies.  (This is a great idea for camping.)

Here are some examples - but you can use whatever you have on hand and get creative!  I make mine different every time! 

“Popeye’s Dessert”
  • Large handful or two of spinach leaves
  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 1 cup cherries
  • 1-2 bananas
  • 2 cups pure water

  • Large handful (or two) of romaine lettuce
  • few sprigs of cilantro
  • 1-2 bananas
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries or strawberries
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 2 cups pure water

“Kale Goodness”:
  • 2 large handfuls of kale leaves
  • 1 large mango (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cut up apple
  • 1-2 celery stalks
  • 2 cups pure water
  • optional: some freshly grated ginger

Directions: place all ingredients in your high-speed blender and blend well.  Add more water if needed. Add ice if you plan to keep your smoothie cold for a long period of time. This is an awesome way to get your greens into your diet anytime of day.  I prefer to drink it in the morning. I feel good knowing that I have had my greens before 7am…if I can do that I can get on with my day knowing I've put some awesome nutrients into my body and I'm ready to face the day! 

with love and gratitude,

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