Saturday, June 4, 2011

Simple Yet Spectacular Summer Smoothies

I am a smoothie snob.  I believe this can all be traced back to the summer I was fifteen, when I was lucky enough to go on vacation with my aunt to Hawaii.  In addition to having many terrific adventures, it was there that I tasted the strawberry smoothie to which all others would be compared; sweet, creamy, cool and refreshing—the perfect blend served up poolside, including a little umbrella.  I am going to go out on a limb here and say that those smoothies probably were not vegan; but they certainly were delicious.  Ever since then, I have been on a mission to find a smoothie that could measure up.  It can’t be too icy, for one thing.  Nor can it be more equated to a milkshake than a smoothie.  Needless to say, I have been frequently disappointed.  There is only one other smoothie that has truly lived up to my expectations, and it was found at the Tiger Lily Cafe, back home on Long Island.  Their raspberry-mango soy smoothie is vegan paradise in a plastic cup.  For the most part, I create my own smoothies now, and I like to keep my ingredient list as simple as possible:
  • Ice
  • Vanilla soy milk or vanilla almond milk – the vanilla flavor really adds something!
  • fresh fruit – strawberries, pineapple, mango, bananas (whatever you like)

Strawberry-Banana Smoothie
  • handful of ice
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1 sliced banana
  • about 1 cup vanilla soy milk

Mango Smoothie
  • handful of ice
  • 1 mango, sliced
  • about 1 cup vanilla soy milk

Toss it all in a blender, and there you have it!  For a colder, thicker smoothie, I freeze my strawberries once they are sliced.  You can mix and match your fruit to suit your heart’s desire, and vary the amount of ice, milk, and fruit until you have created your own perfect smoothie.  Sometimes I even pour my smoothie into those ice pop trays we used when we were kids and throw it in the freezer.  It’s a delicious treat packed with Vitamin C and plenty of protein, too.  Enjoy!

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