Friday, April 2, 2010

behold the green monster

The other day I was in the grocery store with Reed. As we strolled through the produce section, Reed shouted: "Mom! Fresh kale! We need some!" About 6 heads swung toward us to check out this kale-loving toddler. Seeing as the only vegetable Reed would eat a month ago was peas, and that he now is well-versed in different kinds of greens, I was one proud mama.

My secret is our almost-daily smoothies.

After dabbling in smoothies that featured mostly fruit and a little bit of vegetables, we are now all regularly enjoying bright green smoothies called "green monsters," a name which has a doubly wonderful meaning if you are a Red Sox fan like me (2 days until the home opener!).

Overall, my kids used to need their smoothies to be pretty sweet, but they've developed a palette for more vegetable-dense smoothies, and Reed's favorite juice now is straight carrot juice.

I drink a pint at a time (which would be created by the following measurements), so if I'm making a smoothie for all of us, I double or triple it (approx) and the kids drink a glass each. I figure these babies count as at least 3-4 servings of fruits and veggies.
Green Monster Ingredients:
2 cups baby spinach
1 banana
1.5 cups vanilla rice milk OR vanilla almond milk OR vanilla soy milk OR regular milk.

I prefer the vanilla flavored non-dairy milks because I don't do well with large helpings of dairy, and because these are a bit sweeter than regular milk.

You just have to trust me on this. If you don't think you like spinach juice, you are not alone, but I'm telling you: you don't taste the spinach. Try it! You'll see!

Here are several other smoothies we've been enjoying lately. There are infinite combinations:
(anytime I say almond milk, you choose whatever milk you like)
Oatmeal smoothie:
almond milk
frozen berries
yogurt or kefir
one packet of plain instant oatmeal (if you blend it for an extra minute, the oatmeal pretty much dissolves and it just makes your smoothie more dense and filling). I use this one for breakfast for my kids, though I got the idea from Runner's World as a recommended run recovery drink.

Dessert smoothie: (do you trust me?)
1 cup spinach
almond milk
frozen strawberries
a few tbsp. of chocolate syrup

Fruit/ Veggie Mix Smoothie:
carrot Juice
orange Juice
pomegranate juice
a few handfuls of kale
and/or: cucumber, berries, apple slices

Ginger Zinger Smoothie:
Carrot Juice
Orange Juice
plain yogurt
raw ginger
ice cubes


Christopher said...

Almond milk is a great choice for smoothies, and I love the flavor. On my 21 day cleanse, one of the snacks I could have was a shake made with almond milk, tahini, and honey. It seriously tasted great but of course I was eating mostly raw vegetables the rest of the time. Carrot ginger is my favorite juice and I get one almost every morning on the way to work. Beet, carrot, celery is a great juice also.

Joanne said...

Congratulations on your new set-up! The dot com address is wonderful!!! - unique and easy to remember and has longevity - congrats on thinking-up & having this available.
I have tried the first smoothie you had with the video - and it was a hit! Although sometimes the frozen mixed berries added a very seedy component. I loved how the kale disappeared - my 5 yr old was getting more greens! I will try the Green Monster (love the name & I think it will help relunctant "monsters" dive in). I try adding vanilla soy milk into meals - these non-milk varieties are terrific and can be sweeter!
Thanks for all the recipes - keep it up!

Joanne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SoulSister said...

Love the changes here--the title and the graphics are perfecto!

I'm gonna give that ginger zinger a run for its money this morning.

And I'd love to hear more, Christopher, about the 21 day cleanse.

Christopher said...

The cleanse I just finished is called "Rejuvenate" - It is a book by a woman named Helene Silver, it is out of print but you can find it on Amazon if you are interested. It is rather complicated, you have a good amount of prep for just about everyday– vegetable broth that you make a batch of for soups, teas from specific herbs, cleansing drinks throughout the day, but the good part is that the food and recipes are really good. The book is super informative, it explains the benefit of every ingredient and step. It also involves some stretches, exercises, and even has you do things for healthy skin. I did not do every single step, as it was too time consuming, but I think it is a great cleanse if you can stick to the diet part. I lost a lot of weight, we'll see how quickly I put it back on, but I am hoping I continue with some better eating habits.

Angela said...

Love the new blog format and can't wait to see what else is in store!

On the smoothie front - I'm offering up a few suggestions our family loves. I mix one or a combo of the following into a regular fruit/veg smoothie... I love to do the oats too, usually just sprinkle in a couple tablespoons of whole oats per serving, silken tofu (though I don't mix the two cause it would probably be really thick - SIAB perhaps???), fresh ground flax, nutritional yeast, whey powder and melted peanut butter. Being a veggie, I always try to add some protein in using one of these forms. Love your ideas and can't wait to try some out!

Catherine said...

Thanks, Emilie! I tried the green monster this morning with house guests even, and they drank the requisite sip and upon realizing that there was no spinach flavor, they asked for MORE! My daughter Helen even liked it and wanted more. I didn't get much because I felt I had to give the rest to others. Dangit, I'm too nice...