It's no secret that my favorite color is green. I love it. I love that it represents growth, life, newness, and safety. It soothes, relaxes the mind, helps alleviate depression, nervousness, and anxiety while offering a sense of renewal, self-control, and harmony. Green is the color of spring and if that isn't enough to cause a love affair with this emerald beauty, I don't know what is! And, if you are my husband, today green [and white] means victory.
Color is what I loved about being a designer. I would spend hours picking out just the right shade of this or that for a client. To all other eyes color was simply a color, but to me the selection ran much deeper. In the hours of my designer process, I thought about the client - what they were like, what they wanted the space to say, how they wanted to feel when in the space, how they wanted others to feel in that same space. It's a beautiful process really.
This passion for color hasn't left me even though my design days have been shelved for finger paints, diapers, tub time, and cooking. Rather than choosing colors for offices and schools, I now choose them for my palette. I love a plate that bursts with a variety of hues. It seems to make the preparation and consumption of food fun, exciting, full of pleasure and accomplishment - like finishing a painting or walking through a completed space.
All this being said, what should come as a surprise to you is that I have seriously fought the idea of a green smoothie - for years. I'm not exactly sure why but the idea of drinking, through a straw or otherwise, what looked like blended grass or green sludge just wasn't appealing. Okay, maybe I do know why - green sludge? Yuck.
So why on earth am I posting a recipe devoted to green here? Call me a convert, determined health nut, or stubborn redhead but I was not going to let a green smoothie get the best of me. I got over wheatgrass didn't I? And that really is blended grass! Sure these so called superfood smoothies are packed with raw vitamins, minerals, and fiber but, if I'm really honest, what motivated me the most was the idea of my daughter loving them. She will eat pretty much anything she sees enter my mouth so why not a funny green juice? Ironic how being a parent can make you do things you never thought possible.
Turns out, with me or not, she likes them. Well more accurately loves them. She wakes up asking for a "mooey" which translates to smoothie and when she begins to see the big leafy kale come out, heaven help us all. Normally she'll drink hers and then move on to consume the remainder of mine followed by desperate pleas for more. How is a mom to resist? I finally got smart and started making a triple batch - one for my daughter, one for me, and another for my daughter.
[KIDS + SMOOTHIES]
If you haven't tried smoothies with your kids, I highly recommend you do. Smoothies are a fantastic treat for kids and provide great camouflage for those veggies that seem to find the edges of the dinner plate rather than the intended stomach. Start with all fruit to get them used to the idea and then slowly add it veggies. Carrots make a great first vegetable addition as they are more sweet than some of the others. If you want to add greens but have a really picky eater, try using blueberries in place of the peaches of this recipe. The blueberries will turn any green to purple.
8 kale leaves, washed, stemmed and torn into pieces
handful of romaine lettuce leaves
1 organic apple, cored and cut
2 large or 4 small carrots, scrubbed [you don't have to peel if you scrub well and purchase organic]
1" piece of ginger, peeled
4 dates + soaking water [soak overnight or cover dates with boiling water and soak for 10 minutes]
1 tbsp. of ground flax or chia seeds soaked in 3 tbsp. of water [soak for 5 - 10 minutes to create a gel]
1 - 2 c. frozen peaches [I froze some really delicious organic white peaches that work great]
Place all in a powerful blender, like a Vitamix, or food processor. Cover about half way with water. Blend, adding water if necessary, until smooth and juice-like. You can add ice if you prefer a thicker consistency.
Pour into glasses [I like using Ball jars] and serve cold. You can also store in the refrigerator, covered, for a mid-day snack.
Other add-ins: mint, parsley, spirulina, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds, homemade nut / seed milk, soaked oats, chard, dandelion greens, spinach, blueberries, bee pollen granules, wheatgrass juice.
Makes 3, 3 cup servings.