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Creamy Plantain Green Smoothie

9 Apr

Plantain Bananas

Because they are in season all year round in the tropics, I grew up eating plantains fried or baked or boiled or steamed almost daily.  They were one of my fave foods.  I was told not to eat them raw, but I couldn’t resist trying one as it ripened on my kitchen counter one day a few years ago.  Now I love them RAW when they are all black, soft and super sweet.  Sometimes, I can’t wait and eat them when they are a little soft, but still quite yellow (like in the photo above).  For breakfast, I love them with a little raw almond butter and raw honey or with cayenne spices.  For lunch, I like to eat them plain with a huge salad to bulk up my meal when I am really hungry.  Sometimes, we love them in smoothies because they create really lovely creamy drinks.  For days when you are really hungry, these smoothies have a heavier creaminess than regular bananas.  Plantains are an excellent source of potassium, magnesium and vitamins B6 and C.

Today, my whole family enjoyed a Strawberry Plantain Green Smoothie.  For me, the fewer ingredients, the better.   I like keeping things simple.  I used to add dates when my family was transitioning to a more raw food diet, but we find dates in green smoothies too sweet now.  We prefer them a little plainer these days – so we can really taste the ingredients in the smoothie.  I also used to add only 4 cups of greens, but now we prefer 6 cups or more.  But feel free to experiment with other veggies and fruits and add your fave raw ingredients too like nuts and/seeds.  Here’s my basic recipe.

Blend all in a high speed blender:

2 really ripe, soft and black plantains, peeled

1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 cup water

1 pint of strawberries or fruits in season

6 cups of greens, or more

I find it easier to add the greens to the blender first, so I can measure it to make sure I have at least more than 6 cups.

Then I add the strawberries.

Then I add the orange juice and water.

Then I add the plantains last.

Puree it all together for a creamy green smoothie.

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Orange, Cucumber and Celery Juice

15 Mar

Tip of the day Mamas

It feels like Summer outside. And Summer reminds me of cool cucumbers. I love cucumbers because when you juice them, you get A LOT of juice! I spend less time juicing when I use cucumbers!

Orange, Cucumber and Celery Juice

We have lately loved this mix of juices, after drinking it on our recent travels. This is easily my son’s favorite drink these days, although it is best in Summer or Autumn when 2 out of 3 ingredients are in season. Very simply, you need:

4 cups of freshly squeezed orange juice (In the Autumn, use Sour Oranges. In the Winter, use Washington Navels. In the Spring, use Sweet Oranges, Tangelos or Temple Oranges.)

3 cucumbers and 4 celery sticks (both best in Summer and Autumn)

Juice the cucumbers and celery. You should have about 4 cups in total.

Combine 4 cups of orange juice with 4 cups of the green juice. Voila! A delightful drink! Use less orange juice for 'Superhero Green Juice Guzzlers' and more for when the kids aren't into Superheroes!

Very Cherry Smoothie

9 Jul

Very Cherry Smoothie

A lot of parents always ask: “What is the easiest and quickest way to get my kids to eat vegetables?”

As many will exclaim, I do too: “GREEN SMOOTHIES!”

The Winnie-The-Pooh Bear Smoothie was our gold standard, but then I discovered I could add 50% more greens in what I like to call our  “More Greens Please” Strawberry Smoothie.  And it works even better with fresh summer cherries!

Cherries seem to be the ‘in’ fruit these days. They are a wonderful fruit for cleansing the blood, detoxifying acids in the body and strengthening our heart and plasma.  Just 1 cup of cherries contains 2% Vitamin A, 2 % calcium, 3% iron, 12% dietary fiber and 16% vitamin C. They also contain beta carotene, potassium, magnesium and melatonin.  Dr. Oz has been promoting the amazing antioxidant filled tart cherry juice that helps ease arthritis and gout and reduces the risk for heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers.  Whole Foods Market is now promoting their Summer Cherry Fest with a Kid-Friendly Cherry Recipe Contest.  So I thought I’d send in my Raw Recipe that really gets kids to drink a bunch of greens too!

But, first thing’s first: here is the quickest and simplest way to pit cherries… with a paperclip!

Yummy for the Tummy ingredients!

Puree in a high speed blender:

2 pitted dates

3 bananas (I sometimes freeze my bananas for a cooler drink in the Summer)

2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice

16 oz of pitted cherries

6 cups kale, stemmed

Enjoy!

“More Greens Please!” Strawberry Smoothie

1 Jul

More-Greens-Please Strawberry Smoothie

Want to WOW your 4th of July guests with a yummy Strawberry Smoothie full of undetectable Greens?  Look no further!  This recipe is a variation from our Basic Smoothie, but with 50% more greens!  With Strawberries in season the past 2 months, we have enjoyed drinking this immensely.

Puree in a high speed blender:

2 dates, optional but children prefer a sweeter smoothie

3 bananas (I sometimes freeze my bananas for a cooler drink in the Summer)

2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice

16 oz of strawberries

6 cups seasonal leafy greens (we love microgreens from City Roots!)

Enjoy!

Raw Orange Soda Pop

6 Apr

I got an e-mail a few days ago from Stacey asking for help because she wants her husband to eat better.  One line struck me in her e-mail: “The only fruit he will eat are oranges.” So, Stacey, here is a drink for your husband.

And for all you Mamas out there who are struggling to feed family attached to their corn syrup filled and artificially flavoured soda, try this one!  This is a wonderfully nutritious alternative to Fanta, Sunkist or even the Airborne Effervescence!  One glass of orange juice has more protective properties than a vitamin C pill!

 

A Glass of Raw Orange 'Soda Pop'

Add:

1/4 tsp aluminum free baking soda (not raw, but it adds fizz)

to:

2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice

Enjoy immediately.

Creamy Spinach ‘n Orange Juice

26 Feb

Everyone seems sick around us and this is just the thing to boost our immune system: full of vitamin C and B! Similar to our Grapefruit Cilantro Juice, this is delicious!

Process in a juicer (or you can also juice the oranges, place in a high speed blender with spinach – but this way your juice won’t be creamy):

a few big handfuls of spinach, depending on taste
5-7 peeled naval oranges

Enjoy the creaminess of your awesome boost of vitamin C!

Wheatgrass Orange Juice

15 Feb

We sprout wheatgrass at home.

My husband loves wheatgrass juice straight.  My son won’t drink it that way but loves his in fresh orange juice*.  We don’t have a wheatgrass juice extractor, so we place the wheatgrass in a high speed blender with some water and puree.  Then we use a nut bag to separate the juices from the pulp.

*We love fresh orange juice straight from the juicer – it is frothy and ultra creamy.  Just peel it before placing it in the juicer… and voila! you get creamy orange juice.  Add a little wheatgrass juice and your kids will love it.

Resources:

What is Wheatgrass?

Wheatgrass for kids

Really Healthy Juices

24 May
We used to buy a lot of organic bottled juices. But now our fridge is stocked with FRESH organic raw and living juices. Even if I have always been healthy minded and a proponent of Ayurvedic practices, I chose what went on my ‘to-do list’ and I rationalised that buying organic bottled juice was a great time saver for me and still ‘sort-of’ healthy for my family. We realise now that juice from a carton, bottle or can is a BIG STEP down from fresh juice. Not only have they been processed, heated, stored for X amount of days on a shelf in a plastic container… they are poor in vitamin and enzyme content. So we have cleared out some pots and pans in our kitchen and set up our new juicer and smoothie ‘bar’ at home to be able to enjoy our new superfood.

We have heard of the Champion Juicer and the Jack La Lane, but a cousin gave us a Breville 5 years ago which we’ve pulled out of storage, placed on our bar counter and we are enjoying it immensely.

Daddy’s OJ: put 5 apples and 12 peeled oranges in a juicer and enjoy a frothy yummy juice!

Fresh Coconut Milk: open up a young Thai coconut, place coconut water and coconut meat in a blender and puree well. Enjoy alone or with just about anything. The ‘NEW’ Gatorade?

Other Resources:
Green For Life – a book that explains the importance of GREENS in your diet, how eating greens decreases your cravings for junk, how to incorporate and mask them in yummy smoothies, they have recipes on line too
The Best Juicer, Is There One? – a comparison, review, suggestions