Monthly Archives: January 2014

Green Smoothie Time

Green Smoothie

Green smoothies and juices are everywhere these days, and for good reason! I don’t know about you but I would never eat as many greens on a plate as I could cram into my smoothies and juices. I was all about the green juice and kept my smoothies as banana and berries, but now I have come around to the green smoothie. Two main pro’s of the smoothie over the juice are:

1. It’s much more filling and keeps you satisfied for longer,

2. It’s full of fibre to keep things moving; nothing is left out.

So I have decided to share a simple recipe with you. This recipe is sweet enough to taste like a treat but only has naturally occurring sweetness from the nutritious fruits. It also uses spinach which has a really mild flavour and doesn’t taste at all like cabbage as you might find with something like kale…or cabbage.

Here’s what you will need:

1 handful Frozen or Fresh Baby Spinach
1 small handful Fresh or Frozen Mango Chunks
1 small Banana
Unsweetened Almond Milk

You know how to make a smoothie; just blend it all together. If you have a cheap blender like me then you may need to pulse it a little to break up any frozen chunks before leaving it running to do it’s thing.

You can also add any superfoods or powders that you may have even though this smoothie is nutritious enough as it is. I do sometimes add ground flax or powdered probiotic if I’m not feeling great. You could also add some raw vegan protein powder if you have a big day ahead of you.

Now a word about the ingredients I used. You can buy frozen blocks of spinach in the freezer aisles of the supermarkets but these are more than likely not raw or organic (using Sainsbury’s as an example). What I like to do is buy a bag of fresh, ready to use, organic baby spinach and throw it in the freezer as it is. This keeps it from spoiling and I have peace of mind the it is raw and organic. Obviously you do lose some nutrients during it’s transit time but growing you own would be the only better option, in my opinion.

I also get frozen fruit from Sainsbury’s. In this recipe I used frozen mango chunks which save on all the messy chopping, and keep you smoothie cold and refreshing.

If you can, make your own raw almond milk. This will have none of the added, pasteurised this that and the other. But I have no problem with shop bought unsweetened almond milk. It’s a much better choice than dairy so don’t beat yourself up about it. I buy what’s on offer which is usually Blue Diamond. A good idea would be to read the ingredients of all the available brands and go for the one with the least strange ingredients in that don’t sound appetising.

You can swap and change your ingredients but sometimes it goes wrong. Like if you swap your mangoes for blueberries, it will taste great but it will turn brown. I have been experimental before and ended up with a separated nasty tasting mess. So if you are new to the green smoothie game I suggest following recipes until you know what works and what doesn’t. It’s also worth buying a smoothie travel cup or something you can pour your smoothie into to enjoy on the go. I have mine at my desk if I don’t have time to drink it at home. It’s actually a really speedy breakfast that way, even if you have to leave your blender jug in soak at home while you rush out of the door.

I would love to know what flavours you guys like in your smoothies and what benefits you have experienced. I will be posting a slightly different post soon about high FODMAP foods, specifically for all those IBS suffers. I really recommend this one as it has changed my life in the past (even if I have slipped off the wagon recently). Let’s get well together!

(Ps. I am not a nutritionist and have no training. Everything is based on what I believe to be true)

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Healthy Eats

Two posts in one day, you are spoiling me! This is just a quick one with some healthy foods I have eaten recently. As you will see, there aren’t that many and all I have missed out are a few juices. But tomorrow is a new day. First up is my take on raw pasta.

Raw pasta

I used:
1 Courgette (Zuchinni) Peeled as it wasn’t at it’s freshest, and cut into thin ribbons
1 Black Tomato, diced
1 tbsp Red Onion, finely chopped
1 tsp Orange Chilli, finely chopped
1 tbsp Basil, sliced
Pinch of salt

This one’s pretty simple, just throw it all together and enjoy. The beauty of raw food!

Next is just some fruit I enjoyed, not showing my new obsession with eating whole mangoes on their own:

Pomegrante

Fruit Salad

Apple Fauxmeal

That last one is apple fauxmeal. It’s just apples, cashews and dates pulsed in a food processor until it resembles oatmeal. I liked it but I was done after less than half of it. I love fresh fruit and veg but I don’t know how the 80-10-10’s eat so much of the stuff! The dates made the dish for me though. I have been in love with dates ever since my holiday in Tunisia where they were freely available day and night.

Below is my first try and banana “ice cream” but melted a bit because I have a mare with my blender. It has these “ribs” on the inside and the force of the frozen banana chunks took a bit of one of the ribs off and left my lovely raw chocolate treat with chunks of plastic in. I did try it, which was how I discovered the plastic, and it was delicious! I used 1-2 frozen bananas, 1 tbsp raw cacao, 1/2 tbsp maca, a splash of almond milk because my blender wasn’t powerful enough. I love raw cacao. It actually taste better than ordinary cocoa powder which you wouldn’t expect.

Raw Banana Cacao smoothie

Last is a picture of some mixed dehydrated fruit I made over the holidays. They are good to have on hand when you need something to nibble on. I particularly like the apple and have tried red and green, green slightly edging it for me as I like sour tastes.

Dehydrated Fruit

Does anyone else dehydrate? What have you tried and loved?

Homemade Raw Green Kale Powder

Homemade green powder (Kale)

I ate a LOT over the Christmas period and I haven’t really stopped. I included plenty of fruit with a few veggies here and there, but I have cheated multiple times. I have a lot on at the moment and have been craving all those bad foods like crazy and giving in to the craving too often. Ordering all the organic fruit and veg pre Christmas certainly helped, as did watching a lot of raw vegan videos online. I have to pull myself together now for my own sake.

I dehydrated some plain kale a little while back with the intention to dress it as I ate it but never felt like eating it. I guess I’m just not a hardcore health nut. But I don’t like to waste (especially as it was a whole bag of kale!) so I decided to make my own green powder.

Kale Chips

There are loads of green powders on the market these days and they are nearly all really expensive. Yes they boast a lot more nutrition and healing superfood properties than just some dehydrated kale, but you don’t always have fresh greens in the house and this little compact pot of greens is perfect to keep on hand for smoothies that need greening up. Seriously, this little pot was a while bag of chopped kale in a previous life!

Kale Powder

My blender isn’t the most powerful so I didn’t achieve a fine powder. I bet a vitamix would give amazing results! But I am pleased with what I got and that I didn’t waste anything. And I’m sure you could do this with any greens or even a mix. Just dehydrate until crisp and blend until a powder is formed. You could even mix in some superfood powder just to up the anti. I have dehydrate blueberries before also which would make a super healthy powder. Have fun with it!

Kale power for smoothies

I guess I’m still not in a good place right now but I am writing this with a cup of green tea with lemon and hoping to do better tomorrow. I hope you are all well and I wish you a belated happy new year.

Kale Powder