Thursday, April 21, 2011

Smoothie Time!

We have been on a smoothie kick, so imagine how excited I was to see this tear out in the new Food Network Magazine (so excited I ripped it when removing it from the magazine).  Crazy as it might sound, I had never really made a smoothie until a few months ago.  It certainly seems easy enough to make, toss some fruit, yogurt and maybe milk or ice cubes right?  There is an actual formula and sequence that is necessary to get a nice creamy smoothie and Food Network Magazine gave me some  interesting new mix-in ideas to jazz up my boring, lumpy smoothies.  For the most part though, anything goes in smoothie land, mix and match whatever you like. A creative mind could find an endless number of smoothies to make.  Have fun!

My Perfect Smoothie Formula

1 Cup Ice
1-2 Cups Liquid - Milk, Soy Milk, Juice
1/2 Cup Yogurt - Plain, Greek, Vanilla
1-1.5 Cup Fresh or Frozen Fruit

  • 1-2 Tablespoons Sweet - Sugar, Honey, Vanilla Extract, Lime Juice
  • Dash-1 Teaspoon Herbs and Spices - Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Fresh Basil, Ginger
  • Protein Powder - I am not a health nut, don't know much about these things, but many people put protein in their smoothies.  Not me.
  • Added nutrients - Flax Seed, my sister-in-law puts flax seeds in all the smoothies she makes, something I want to add to mine for healthy family colons.  I suppose you could sneak any added nutrient or vitamin into a smoothie if you need it, go crazy!
  • Coffee - Make your own Coolata!
Preparation:  Ice first!  Place the ice cubes in first and hit the Ice Crush bottom on your blender.  Once the ice is crushed to perfect consistency add the rest of the ingredients then blend on high for a minute.  If it gets stuck, add a bit more liquid or mix so the ice is not stuck on the bottom clogging the blender.

Fun Ingredients
  • Exotic Fruits: Kiwi, Mango, Papaya, Coconut Milk, Pomegranate 
  • Melon:  Honeydew, Cantaloupe, Pumpkin puree, try some of those weird ones in the produce isle you have never heard of.
  • Citrus: any kind of citrus could be blended.   Remember lemon and lime juice in small doses add some zing to a smoothie.  A bit of peel or zest would be good too.
  • Veggies:  Hide the healthy stuff! Carrots, Spinach
  • Coffee
  • Obvious Fruits:  Apples, Grapes, Berries, Bananas
  • Nuts:  Peanut butter, Nutella
  • Dairy:  Yogurts, Cottage Cheese, Sour Cream, Cream Cheese 
  • Not so healthy: Ice cream, cookies, candy, you could go anywhere with this, think DQ Blizzard.

Crazy Cubes
My new favorite thing is coconut milk ice cubes.  Found this little tip in the Food Network pull out, freeze coconut milk in an ice cube tray then you have flavorful ice cubes to add to your smoothie.  Imagine how good those ice cubes will be this summer in a Rum Runner.  Can't wait!

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