Monthly Archives: May 2015

My #Smoothie Journey–Tropical Cantaloupe #Recipe #Fruit #NutriNinja

cantaloupeAs I continue on my smoothie journey, I think of new fruits to play with. For those of you who eat a lot of fruit this is no big deal, but I was never very interested in fruit until now. Cantaloupe is a new favorite, a little reminiscent of mango in smoothies for me, adding a sweet, bland taste that is very easy to drink. I came up with this refreshing mix today, after yesterday’s very healthy smoothie. I added celery to a smoothie for the first time and it worked out better than expected!

Tropical Cantaloupe Smoothie

  • 1/2 cup pineapple
  • 1/2 cup cantaloupe
  • 1/2 cup full fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbl honey
  • 1 cup crushed ice

I wanted crunchy ice, so I crushed it in my NutriNinja blender, and then blended the other four ingredients before re-adding some of the ice. This added some texture to the blend.

My #Smoothie Journey — Taste testing Aloha Green Powders and Protein mixes

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I received a test box of five different Aloha products this week and I’ve had fun trying them out. The end result is that I decided to continue with the brand and my first monthly box is coming soon. Based on a quick run through grocery store Fred Meyer, their prices are a fair amount higher than basic store brands, but not insanely so. I’m assuming the quality is better. Certainly the taste is! When I go to Whole Foods next I’ll see how their prices compare.

I tried the original Good Greens powder (Daily Good Greens) in water alone, feeling brave. Sure, it isn’t the yummiest potion ever, but I drank it fast and it didn’t give me any trouble. I also managed to get my work done for the day, despite about five hours of sleep the previous night, so maybe it did up my energy as advertised. I certainly needed some.

I was most intrigued by the Chocolate green powder. I added it to a basic nut milk and banana/date smoothie. The end result was simply delicious to start, but changed on me quickly. I recommend drinking it in non-leisurely fashion. I had better luck with the Berry green powder. I mixed it into a simple, three ingredient fruit smoothie (idea from a Blender Girl smoothie recipe) and it worked out very well.

Next, I broke out the Vanilla Aloha Protein. I found a drink recipe here: Some yummy looking stuff, but I did doctor up the recipe I found with banana and spinach to make sure it had more than protein going for it. The drink was quite good, but even though my smoothie was around 400 calories, it didn’t make me feel like I had a meal. So, back to the drawing board with a protein smoothie. With that many calories I don’t want to feel hungry for at least a few hours. I might still be happier using food sources for protein, like yogurt, but I’m going to experiment more with this product when my first month’s shipment comes in.

What is your favorite protein source for smoothies?

My #Smoothie Journey — Making It Palatable #Superfoods #Recipe

IMG_0131If you’re like me, on the quest to get some healthy products into your diet, you probably didn’t just buy whole foods, but also some of those lovely powdered superfoods that promise so much. This is the one I purchased, pictured above. I didn’t have much luck using it at first. It destroyed the drinkability of the first (perfectly good otherwise) smoothie recipe I added it to. I halved the dose of the powder and that did better, but I thought there must be some combination that can hold up to a full dose of my canister of green powder. Today, I hit upon it, and here is the recipe. Enjoy!

Green Superfood Smoothie

  • 1 scoop green superfood
  • 1 bosc pear, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal (I use Snoqualmie Falls Lodge brand)
  • 1 cup cashew milk, semi-frozen
  • 3/4 tbl maple syrup

Blend until the pear is broken up.

What makes superfood powder or other green stuff tasty for you? My theory is that it is the maple syrup/oats combination that is cleaning up the powder taste. What do you think?

My #Smoothie Journey – No Cheat Days, Our Favorites

crazysexykitchenI find that when something is important to me, I have to do it every day. Whether it is drafting a manuscript (1K a day no matter how excruciating the process or difficult my family makes it), exercise, or a new dietary habit, I can’t cheat. My husband fell off the smoothie wagon quickly. A mix of not being hungry and not liking the looks of a smoothie I presented one night. I take some of the blame by being inconsistent as to what meal of the day I’m having my smoothie, but the weather in the part of the world I live in is wildly varied in May, and I can’t always handle a large, cold drink at lunch vs. dinner. So I change it up depending on the weather.

I need to make it possible for my husband to do a quick smoothie for breakfast, since he isn’t home for lunch. So far, I’ve resisted the breakfast smoothie for myself. Any recipes that are so good a breakfast smoothie is a must have? Let me know!

I have refused to give up. There was one day where my smoothie was dessert, rather than a meal, but I’ve done well. Overall, no weight loss, but I’m staying healthy. Next up, I’d like to investigate allergy support smoothies, because it is high allergy season for us, and bad allergies are as uncomfortable as a head cold.

You might wonder what our favorite smoothies are so far. My husband says his is the Strawberry Fields from Crazy Sexy Kitchen. I have two I have utterly adored. The For the Love of Nog! from the same cookbook. Also, the Strawberry Pina Colada Smoothie from Natural Chow.

What is your favorite smoothie?

My #Smoothie Journey: Don’t wear white shorts while blending #recipe

cherrygarciasmoothieYesterday I technically had a smoothie as a snack, but I’m guessing McDonald’s smoothies don’t count in my health journey, so I decided not to count. At least I had that instead of a high calorie coffee drink like I normally would have. So, when I came home from my shopping trip I put on my new white shorts (oops) and started concocting. The results were delicious, but dribbly, so be warned! Don’t wear white while playing with frozen blueberries!

Pineapple Blueberry Delight

  • Half cup pineapple
  • One cup frozen or fresh blueberries
  • One cup mixed spinach and arugula
  • One cup almond milk ice cubes (I freeze my own in advance)
  • Half cup milk (I used cow for extra protein but could be non-dairy)
  • One tablespoon coconut oil
  • Half lime squeezed

Blend until the ice cubes are dissolved. I found I could really taste the coconut and arugula in this one. Delish!

What are you using for protein in meal replacement smoothies? I had been thinking almond milk did the trick but then I looked at the box. It’s only one gram of protein per cup, compared to nine in cow’s milk.

Help! My brain is going to the 1920s! #amwriting

dealpictureAfter spending most of the last five years focused on the Victoria era, I’m refreshing my research skills by setting a new series for Kensington in mid-1920s London! I couldn’t be more excited. It’s such a vibrant, modern-ish time period, between WWI and WWII. I put the first words into a brand new Word document yesterday and I’m having a blast.

Don’t worry, there are still two more Redcakes novels in the pipeline. I just sent Redcakes #7 to beta readers. But meanwhile, I’m dipping into hot jazz, changing social mores, and increasingly minimalist clothing…

My #Smoothie Journey – A New Concoction #recipe

carrot smoothie 1So far, I haven’t picked up the kindergarten crud, and I’m trying to keep my smoothies extra healthy. This turned out surprisingly delicious. It was my first carrot smoothie experiment, and I was attempting to add a little staying power to the smoothie with fat and protein.

Carrot Smoothie #1

  • 10 small, chopped baby carrots
  • 1/2 chopped green apple
  • 1 clementine orange
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 tbl almond butter
  • 1 tbl coconut oil
  • 1 squeeze ginger pulp
  • 4 oz coconut water
  • 1/2 cup ice cubes

Blend together for 45 seconds or so. I’m finding with my new Nutri Ninja, that the individual blending cup does a fantastic job, but apples take up a lot of room, so I have to blend with 1/2 the apples first, then add the rest.

What is your favorite ingredient?