Sunday, 19 August 2012

Smoothie Criminal

Breakfast is a tricky meal, isn't it? I don't completely subscribe to the saying 'Eat like a king at breakfast, a prince at lunch time and a pauper in the evening'. largely because I'm not sure how many mornings I could cope with a hogs head, pheasant and quail platter. Equally do I really want to finish the day with a pie from Mrs Miggins pie shop?

For breakfast, dairy is pretty much off the menu for me, since I heard a doctor say, we're the only mammal that drinks milk beyond the weaning stage. Bleugh. Suddenly milk on cereal had lost its innocence. Well, at least we're not drinking it from source, that would be weird.

This has meant getting a little creative with the breakfast options. In the colder months, I like nothing better than a steaming bowl of porridge sprinkled with blueberries and a dusting (smothering) of brown sugar. I make it with rice milk and you can't tell the difference from cows milk other than your teeth aren't covered in a discusting furr like theyre a Carpet Right sample. Soya, oat and almond milk are all really good alternatives.

You can put all sorts into and on porridge too. Bananas, strawberries, nuts, rasperries, toasted pumpkin seeds are delish and the more of that stuff you use the less sugar required.

If you're looking for a sugar alternative for porridge, maple syrup is great but even better is agave syrup, a nice slow-releasing sweetener.

Dont bother with any of that fake shit when it comes to sweeteners. They are the devils dust made by evil manufacturers who see food as chemical formulas not Nature's gift to us uprights... in my humble opinion.

But what to do when the weather (finally) warms up. In summer, porridge has me sweating like John Terry at The Notting Hill Carnival.

I alternate between scramble eggs and toast, porridge and my new discovering/ invention - The Super Smoothie. 

Last time I was in the States watching telly I got drawn in, as you do, to an informercial where Montell was talking about making these smoothies. They're experts at informercials in America.  They're just like normal programmes but at the end of them you have to get your wallet.

Anyway, he was juicing all this fruit and then he did something I'd never seen before, he put vegetables in his smoothie. Vegetables? What are you, some kind of carrot chomping Alien space freak. Who does that?! He then passed around this murky sludge to the audience who sipped it and did the Blue Peter pause "mmm its delicious" thing but they seemed to actually mean it.

Something clicked  in my head, you can juice or blend just about anything.
When I got home I got a Kenwood blender (from Argos), that you can see pictured here, a whole heap of fruit and vegetables and a sense of adventure (not the sort that has you trekking into unchartered rain forest - more the sort that has you add cucumber to a fruit smootie) and set about making all kinds of weird combos.

I blended brocolli, bananas, cucumbers, oranges, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, apples, dates, figs, raisins, cashew nuts, grapes, kiwifruit, spinach even! you name it, I threw it in that bad boy. Not all at once you understand, I would have been shitting like a police horse but various combinations produced different flavours and I loved them.
I wasn't meansuring anything but usually made about two glasses worth each time and that alone would see me through from breakfast til at least an 11 o clock snack.

Now, its not a completely low cal option as there can be a lot of sugar (fructose) in these drinks depending on what fruit you use, but there's also tonnes of fibre, yes, I'm bringing the F word into this.

They're quick to make too so there's literally no excuse.

Through doing this I've found some foods really don't work. Carrots and apples do not blend very well. They make the whole thing too bitty and bananas, if over-ripe can make it a little too sweet.

You'll probably need to loosen the whole thing up with some liquid. I use water or coconut water.

Also, if you want to add more carbs to it so it keeps you going for longer, add some porridge oats. I reckon you could even put left over rice in it. Though if you do, and it's disgusting I will claim to have never said this.
Another thing Ive been adding is wheat-grass powder to boost my immune system and give me a shiny glossy coat... Oh I mean, bolster my energy levels. I occasionally pop in some cinnamon and you can use cayenne peper which is good for promoting weight loss (though it can't be that good as I'm sure you still get fat Mexicans)

I'm not going to include any smoothie recipes here as I think the best thing to do when making your smoothie in the morning is just make sure you have a good selection and just riff it every day. Some days it'll work and sometimes it'll be weird like oh "Apple and savoy cabbage is as disgusting as it looks. I now know that"

This is a great way to take in all the goodness, vitamins and minerals fruit and veg have to offer. Shop bought smoothies are often pasteurised so that original goodness is lost (or artificially replaced). If you drink something that's literally just been blitzed, all the goodness is still there for the taking.

Whats not to like!

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