A Healthy start to the day…
So far, August has not been the quiet month I expected for a detox. Too many hot days, children on holidays, cooking experiments leading to impromptu gatherings leading to too many “dates with bottles of wine” as my friend Monica would say. It’s not for lack of trying and in an effort to kick start the day in some virtous kind of way, I have enrolled the assistance of my trusted blender. So every second day or so ( depending on everyone’s mood and the state of the fridge supplies!), I make smoothies for breakfast.
Not only do they taste good, but they’re so healthy you can feel yourself actually coming back to life as you drink it (well, I do, anyway). The blender I use is a monster I acquired in the US, called a Mix n Blend II by Blendtec. It’s a pretty heavy duty machine, a bit of an over kill for blending smoothies, but I wanted an appliance that could also crush ice and also mill/grind grains, in case I fancied making my own flour on the boat ( that hasn’t happened yet, in the 2 years we’ve been at sea!) Oh, and it has a mixing bowl too, so that’s what I use for making bread and cakes. But I digress. The reason I mention this, is that running this blender early in the morning causes such a racket, it wakes up the kids. How is that as an added bonus?
Now for the smoothies. We’ve experimented with fruits and vegetables, and fruits win hands down in the morning. Spinach and celery green power shakes at 7am have never found any takers on this boat I am afraid. Ok, here’s what goes in (for 4 serves):
1 banana, either fresh or frozen. It adds thickness and sweetness to the shake, and if using frozen you don’t need ice cubes. ( Tip: do not throw your overripe bananas, cut them in 1” chunks and freeze them)
1 cup plain yoghurt, unflavoured and unsweetened (in Mexico, look for yogurt natural sin azucar, as yogurt natural comes loaded with sugar)
2 cups of fresh fruits, whatever is on hand. In Mexico, we use mainly tropical items, like mangoes, pineapples, rockmelons. Anywhere else, strawberries, apples, peaches, nectarines…Whole citrus fruits do not work (trust me, they will turn the whole thing in a mushy mess!) And any berries with large seeds (rasperries, blackberries,…) will give a gritty texture to the shake. We don’t like that. Oh, and if you use melons, then skip the bananas, the 2 flavours don’t go so well together in my opinion.
½ cup of orange, lemon or lime juice, my kids like apple juice but that’s too sweet for my liking
100 ml natural sweetener like maple syrup (my favourite), honey or agave syrup
A small handful of mint when we have (it goes beautifully with pineapple or melons)
3 or 4 ice cubes ( any more and you’ll need a spoon to scoop it out)
Blend on the smoothies/shake setting if your blender has one, otherwise at low speed for 10 seconds then high speed for another 10 seconds or so until everything is nice and smooth. Enjoy!