Sweet Potato in the Mix

You guessed it; I had a cooked sweet potato that needed a home, and I just so happened to be making a spinach shake so….

It wasn’t too bad. I woke up with a sore throat again (same cold? different cold?) so I added more spinach than usual. Some frozen peas and frozen strawberries and the sweet potato. It was really really thick. I couldn’t actually taste the sweet potato; the spinach and green peas stole the show. But it was very filling. I feel more satisfied after this smoothie than usual. It should carry me well through church services today! I just hope those few days without spinach haven’t messed up my superhuman immunity.

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Leafing Out

A friend generously gave me her last Swiss Chard harvest, so I didn’t have to buy spinach after all. The link is to a page extolling the health benefits of Swiss Chard. So this morning’s green smoothie was 2 cups of raw Swiss Chard, five large frozen strawberries and 1 cup of water.

“Farley” asked if he could drink some this morning. I gave him a qualified yes. It sounded like this: “Yeees?” Meaning, I didn’t bother to explain to the three year old that he wasn’t going to like it. He’s been carrying around this flashlight, so when I came back into the kitchen, he was shining his flashlight into the depths of his green smoothie drink. He lifted the glass to his lips, and I watched as he carefully titrated the liquid toward his mouth. He got about an inch away, shuddered, and put the glass down.

I, on the other hand, drank it down like nectar. It tasted like the great outdoors. It reminded me of pumpkin patches, walking through crunchy leaves, fresh mown grass; well it tasted like all of that anyway. With just a hint of strawberries. The color, ooph, terrible. But I already feel energized and refreshed. It has to be those phytonutrients. And blending them…I have this theory that when you blend up this raw stuff, it breaks it down so that the body can easily absorb them, and even more quickly than maybe it normally would. I woke up with a sore throat, and is it any wonder…I had gone two days without a green smoothie. I drank my Swiss Chard shake this morning, and I already feel loads better. Blend on.

Balancing Act

Deep down, we all know it’s true. Balancing our life’s work makes everything better. Even Stephen King’s The Shining reveals that simple truth. In a horrifying way, and I actually haven’t seen the film in its entirety, but I digress.

I have come to look forward to my revolting green smoothies in the morning. But in order to balance my healthful breakfast, I purposely Googled a Paula Dean fried chicken recipe last night for dinner.

I kept saying ‘wow’ during dinner. It was the best adjective I could come up with that didn’t interfere with my bite/chewing ritual. This was amazing fried chicken.

I did get the recipe from Paula Dean’s website, but I had to alter it somewhat to fit my family’s needs. For example, it called for 1 cup of Texas Pete’s red pepper sauce in the egg wash; I figured my 11, 8 and 3 year olds might not appreciate that culinary delicacy. I just put eight drops of Tabasco in it. Then it called for self-rising flour in the chicken batter; I never have self-rising flour on hand, so I doctored up my all-purpose flour with salt and baking powder. Other than that, I followed her directions to a T. The drawback was the length of time from prep to table; TWO HOURS. Why did it take so long? We scored some beautiful fresh poultry at Aldi; 5 thigh/drum stick pieces for only $3.46. DH said he did a double-take at the price. The chicken pieces were especially fat. The recipe suggested 14 minutes per thigh and my big pan only fit three big thighs at once. Plus, I just couldn’t get the meat up to temp. We’re paranoid about salmonella over here, not to mention, pink chicken meat is uber-unappetizing. What I ended up doing was frying the chicken up to 155 degrees and then baking it the rest of the way to 180. Even though it took FOREVER, when I sunk my teeth into my first crispy juicy bite of flavorful chicken, I closed my eyes so I could even better appreciate my sense of taste. This was some seriously delicious fried chicken.

Now on to my latest green smoothie update. This morning’s smoothie was 1/2 cup water, 2 cups fresh spinach, 1/2 cup frozen peas, 4 fat frozen strawberries and one small very ripe banana. The peas added just the right sweet and hearty flavor to my boring spinach shake. Behold.

It's Booger Green!

Prize-winning chicken; Not gluten-free.

Sick of Spinach Yet?

My camera needs batteries, but honestly, the photo would look pretty much the same as all the other green smoothie photos. I just made the best one YET. Extremely yummy fruit flavor.

2 cups fresh spinach

1 cup lemon-infused water

1/2 ripe orange

1 small banana

1 ripe pear

Whir until bright green and smooth.

And I’m still not sick!

Blended Families

As in, the dairy family and the leafy green vegetable family. I can not in good conscience recommend to anyone else the smoothies that I have been concocting. My most recent potion is very…spinachy.

I haven't tried cooked spinach; it's always fresh that I use

I ran out of frozen fruit, then I ran out of bananas. I do have some canned mandarin oranges, but I’m trying to stay out of my food storage. That is a post for another day.

But I do have plain yogurt. Why am I inflicting this on myself, you may ask? The thing is, several members of my family have had this nasty cough/runny nose thing. And I don’t even have the sniffles. By all rights, I should be hacking it up with everyone else, especially since Farley has the ┬áhabit of spewing liquids right in my face when he coughs, but I have been drinking these dumb green shakes and I feel as healthy as a horse. Not losing weight, still love my bacon and eggs around 10am, but there does seem to be some immune-boosting power to these spinach drinks. Keep in mind, I’m drinking them like clockwork…every day at 8:10am (after ‘Tori’ gets on the bus.)

If nothing else, I’m getting my RDA of veggies. Here’s the newest recipe. Yack.

1 generous cup of spinach

1.5 cup plain yogurt

1.25 cup cold water

2 teaspoons honey

Blend and drink, if you dare

Please Blow Me Away

I’m back. After a month or so of sporadic outdoor running, I decided to get off my lazy bum and dance with the treadmill again. Thank you, Breaking Benjamin, for your heroic war ballad: Blow Me Away.

My heart is pounding and I’m coated in a layer of sweat, but dang it, I feel GOOD. Now I’m going to make my green smoothie. Unfortunately, there are no frozen fruit pieces in the freezer, so I am relegated to a banana spinach drink. Yummers.

Green with jealousy?