Now onto something less political, well, slightly less political: Green Smoothies.
I try to start every day with a green smoothie. Here are my reasons why:
1. I love sweet food, and they are sweet
2. I like to have a breakfast that fills me up and has staying power
3. I want to start my day with a nutritional punch, even a powerhouse
4. Green smoothies are easy to make--they do not require a recipe or measuring once you learn the formula
5. They are easy to clean up after
6. All of the ingredients can become kitchen staple items if you know what they are
7. Green smoothies are easy to take on my way out the door to work
8. I lost 50 pounds drinking green smoothies so I know they are a "safe" food for me
And here is a basic formula for a green smoothie:
frozen banana + greens + other fruit(s) + liquid + ice
optional, but highly recommended for regularity and nutritional goodness: ground flax seed or chia seed
Here are options for each component: use one or more from each category:
GREENS: fresh or frozen spinach, kale, collard, swiss chard, romaine lettuce, alfalfa sprouts, cucumber, carrot (okay, it's not green). I recommend starting out with spinach because you cannot taste it in the smoothie and then adding one other green in addition, a little so as not to be overly aggressive at first.
FRUIT: I always start with a ripe FROZEN banana because it adds the creamy texture to the smoothie. If you don't like bananas, just leave it out. Then add more fruit, any or all, fresh or FROZEN (that makes this very easy!) in combinations that you like: fresh pitted date(s), strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, mango, apple, pear, orange, clementine, grapes, canned pumpkin puree, young coconut flesh, sweet potato
LIQUID: water (believe it or not, it's all that you NEED), unsweetened nut milk-almond is my favorite (365 Brand from Whole Foods is great), soy milk, rice milk, hemp milk. I like to find the lowest calorie versions of any of these products.
Once you master the basic green smoothies, you are ready for some sophisticated combinations if you like that kind of thing. This morning I woke up to a great blog post from Gena at http://www.choosingraw.com/ about making your own Chai Spice Blend. I immediately cleaned up my kitchen and went to town (I mean work) on it.
Chai Spice Mix (yields about 1/3 cup spice mix)2 tbsp. ground ginger
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground cloves
2 1/2 tbsp. ground cardamom
2 tsp. nutmeg
2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. white pepper (I used black pepper because that's what I had)
For my taste buds, this chai smoothie ranked right up there with the best green smoothies of all time.
Do you drink green smoothies? Why or why not?
Is there something else that is your go-to breakfast?