I’m dying to spend time outside on my deck. Weather is looking pretty good for the next couple of days to do just that, but my schedule this weekend is going to prevent me from doing so. I just hope Mother Nature isn’t putting us on and really means to allow us to have Spring from here on out.
In the meantime, this smoothie is what I drink every morning. It’s filling, nutritious and tastes great. One thing I love about smoothies: you can add just about anything to it. Any kind of fruit and some veggies will go well in this recipe. I make a gallon at a time. You can cut ingredient portions to make less. Occasionally, I end up with more than a gallon, depending on the amount of OJ I add.
2 32 ounce containers of Greek yogurt. I use the Greek yogurt because it has less whey (the liquid on top of the yogurt) and more protein than regular yogurt. One container is plain, the other vanilla.
About 5 cups total fruit, cut into chunks if needed. I have been using frozen because I’m lazy. If you use frozen, you will want it partially or completely thawed. If processed frozen with the OJ, you will end up with the blades of your blender all gummed up. Any kind of fruit you like is fine. I always use mango. I have also used blackberries (only once-I hate the seeds!), dark cherries, blueberries and strawberries.
1 12 ounce bag of granola. I always use Bear Naked Fit. It is lower in calories and sugar. Use whatever you like.
1/2 cup of wheat germ. This adds a good dose of several vitamins and minerals.
Orange juice. You will need a minimum of 3 cups. I add as I am blending, so you can expect to add a bit more than 3 cups.
I also add a fiber supplement. The clear, tasteless, flavorless, smooth textured kind. The brand I use has 5 grams of soluble fiber per heaping teaspoon.
In a food processor (blender if you don’t have a food processor), process the granola and wheat germ until fine.
Set the granola mixture to the side. In a blender, pour in half of the fruit and about a cup and a half of orange juice. Blend until smooth, adding more OJ if needed. Add 1/2 container of yogurt and blend again until smooth. Add some of the granola mixture and blend again.
Pour the mixture into a pitcher (or whatever you plan to store the smoothie mixture in). Repeat until all of the ingredients have been blended. Once all are blended, stir all together in the pitcher.
If the smoothie is too thick, just add more OJ. I add OJ to my cup to thin out individual servings until I have enough room in the pitcher to add OJ directly to the pitcher. I generally end up with a thicker smoothie that is more like an ice-cream shake than a smoothie.
Enjoy! Up next, something from the grill!!! Until next time, Grill, Baby, Grill!
This was something new for me. I had never grilled fruit before. I’m not sure I have ever even eaten grilled fruit. But, there is a first time for everything. I had been contemplating trying it out for a while. I finally tried last week and success or failure, I planned to let you know how it turned out!
This was a spur of the moment decision, so I grilled peaches and bananas, both of which I happened to have.
Prepare the grill for a medium to high heat. The fruit will be grilled over direct heat. I didn’t need a lot of coals. Around 20 were plenty. When the fire is nearly ready, slice the peaches in half, removing the pit. The bananas do not need any preparation.
The peaches went on first, cut side down. I decided they needed a little more time than the bananas as they are a firmer, fleshier fruit. About 2 or 3 minutes after the peaches are on, put the bananas on the grill. I turned the peaches over after they started to soften, around 6 minutes or so. You can see the charring on the peaches in the photo. This is due to the natural sugars present. Sugars char when put to heat. It’s not burnt and does add flavor. I drizzled about a tablespoon or so of lime juice and honey over the peaches, allowing the liquids to pool in the space left by the pit. The bananas can be turned around 5 minutes after putting them on. Again, make sure they are softening before turning. Total cooking time for the peaches will be around 12 or 13 minutes, the bananas 10 minutes. The peaches will be soft all the way through, the bananas will feel “mushy” or like a thick custard.
After removing the peaches from the grill, you can leave them as they are or dice them up. As you dice them or cut them as you are eating, remove the peel. It will slide off quite easily. Serve them still warm with vanilla ice cream, pound cake or as I did, with the bananas. They were very tasty.
Slice open the banana peel to reveal a soft (but not falling apart), moist banana. Cut into chunks and serve with ice cream, cake or with the peaches. Slice it lengthwise and create a warm, grilled banana split. I sliced mine lengthwise and added pieces of a dark chocolate bar (while the banana was still very warm. The chocolate melted and became a yummy, gooey mess!), marshmallows (that my daughter roasted on the grill) and some coconut. A delicious treat!
Pineapple would be another great fruit to grill. I’m sure there are plenty more that would withstand grilling. Try some yourself and let me know the results!
Until next time, Grill, Baby, Grill!