It’s easy eating greens

by April on April 27, 2012

Green Smoothie

As I said, I do eat more than cake.

Exhibit A: The green smoothie.

I swear I wasn’t holding out on you, I just didn’t think many people would be interested in drinking something green that didn’t include the words “tequila” and “on the rocks”. But I’ve been asked for this recipe so many times, by family, friends, and complete strangers, that I’m starting to think my assumption was all wrong. Maybe you want to drink your salad, too.

That sentence made this whole thing sound really unappealing.

Let’s just move on.

Why the green smoothie
A green smoothie is basically green foods — spinach, kale, mint, celery, etc. — and fruit thrown into a blender and poured into a glass. The reason for this drink’s existence is three-fold:

  1. I love a good juice bar, but juicing extracts the fiber from your produce. What did fiber ever do to deserve that? (The “experts” argue about juicing versus smoothies, but I’m not getting into that here. I’ve got your back, fiber!)
  2. Juice bars are expensive, and juicers can be, too. I also don’t want yet another kitchen appliance. But I already own a blender…
  3. Sometimes it’s 8 p.m. and I realize I haven’t eaten much green food that day. Eating a big salad is one option, but this is a faster one.

How to make a green smoothie
Here’s my standby recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup ice water
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 20 or so mint leaves
  • Juice from one lime
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1/2 cored apple, cut into large chunks
  • 1/2 cucumber, end removed and cut into large chunks

Directions:

  1. Put ice water, spinach, mint, lime juice, and salt in the blender and blend on high for about 10 seconds.
  2. Add the apple and cucumber and blend well.

Ta-da! And you can play mixologist, too. If you’re new to the world of green smoothies, you might start with a sweeter fruit, like pineapple, and add more lime juice. Ready to take it up a nutritional notch? Try kale, but add extra lime to counteract the bitterness of the kale. Here are more substitution ideas:

  • Instead of water, try coconut water
  • Instead of spinach, try kale, chard, or collard greens
  • Instead of mint, try basil, parsley, or cilantro
  • Instead of lime, try lemon, orange, grapefruit or tangerine
  • Instead of apple, try pineapple, peaches, pears, or any other fruit (Frozen berries are good, but you’ll have to be okay with drinking a brown smoothie. Red + green = brown in the blender)
  • Instead of cucumber, try celery

It’s that easy to eat drink your vegetables.

And if you still think a green drink isn’t complete without tequila, I won’t stand in your way.

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