Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Kale, Spinach, Broccoli & Carrot smoothie

Recently, I got to know of these two websites that I've found to be of extreme importance. More because they include information about the most basic foods we eat and the information shared on there has enabled me to incorporate more of the good and reduce the bad in my daily diet.

First one is the world's healthiest foods and the other one NutritionData.com. If you are interested in getting familiar with it, you can start by looking at these example pages:

Broccoli: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2357/2
Banana: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1846/2
Dry-roasted pistachio with salt: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/nut-and-seed-products/3181/2
Kale: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2462/2
Turmeric: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/spices-and-herbs/212/2
Lemon juice: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1938/2
2% reduced fat Milk: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/dairy-and-egg-products/71/2

Why Kale should be something to eat everyday? And why cooked kale is wayyyyyy better than uncooked one?

How is it that greens like broccoli and collard greens only have so much good and no bad things in them!?

Innovative ways to incorporate these in your diet could make you fall in love with the goodness and health benefits these vegetables bring to us. I personally find that drinking up the greens is much easier and enjoyable for the taste-buds than chewing on them in form of a salad so here's my first recipe for veggie breakfast smoothie.

Ingredients: 

½ cup Kale
½ cup Spinach
½ cup Broccoli
½ cup baby carrots
3-4 cups water for steam-cooking the veggies
2½ cups cold water
juice of 1 lemon
¼ tsp red/black pepper (optional)

Method: 

Thoroughly wash and clean the vegetables and steam cook them in a steamer for 5-7 minutes. Ensure the water in steamer is boiling before you put the vegetables on top rack to steam cook. 

Let the veggies cool for 2 min and then transfer them to blender. Add remaining ingredients including cold water. Blend until smooth. Drink right away. It tastes like the V8 tomato juice.


The above mentioned portions make 4 cups of smoothie.

If you don't have any one of the veggies, you can still make the smoothie without it as you're still getting to drink the rest of them. Alternatively, you can skip the lemon and pepper and instead add banana or any other fruit/fruit juice to make it a sweet smoothie. What I have found is if you eat foods without salt to begin with, you'll notice that you don't really miss it so I've skipped adding salt to this smoothie altogether.

In the past, I have also made smoothies with fresh pineapple chunks, green grapes, and spinach and that turns out pretty good too. I prefer the above mentioned version better because of less sugar in it.

Additional source for good recipes: 

Catherine at weelicious.com gives some great tips on how some boring vegetables can be incorporated in your child's diet (or may be yours too ;)) without making them feel bored about eating these so-called-boring and non-tasty veggies.

So what kind of smoothie are you going to drink today?

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