Sunday, July 3, 2011

Spinach Smoothies ;)

 Last weekend when I went grocery shopping, I got all enthusiastic and health-conscious and bought 2 bags of fresh spinach. The plan was to stay healthy and cook a meal out of it, but, good thoughts don't last long and I totally forgot about the spinach, after placing it in the refrigerator. Two days ago, Vathsal and I went to the grocery store again and this time it was Vathsal's turn to be smitten by the health-bug. He suggested we buy spinach and eat healthy! So, in came the third bag of spinach.

So, what do you do when you are stuck with so much spinach and no intention to cook??!!! Well, you put a spin on everything possible ;) I tried making smoothies out of them and I loved it. In my opinion, this is the simplest, yet, tastiest way to eat spinach.

Even Vathsal was like, "Whaaat? Spinach in Smoothies????", but, no complaints after tasting it! You really don't taste the spinach distinctly, after you mask it with the other flavors. The whole thing looks GREEEEEN  which might look a bit weird and apart from that, its just delicious.

Apart from the specific ingredients, I also get crazier at times and add a few other stuff, like,
* Whey protein powder - especially after a trip to the gym.
* Fiber powder (like Benefiber) - doesn't really have a taste but gives you some additional fiber goodness.
* Ground flax seed - Good stuff with all the good fats and the fiber. Also, adds some thickness to the smoothie.
* Egg whites (from the carton) - Full of protein and the egg whites from the carton are pasteurized, so they are safe, unlike the fresh egg whites, if you worry about the Salmonella and the rest of the gang.
* Plain or flavored fat-free yogurt - Substitute it for the soymilk.
* Plain or flavored skimmed or 1% milk - Substitute it for the soymilk.
* Frozen fat-free vanilla yogurt - Makes it taste even better! Any flavored frozen yogurt would do, according to the smoothie that is being done.

Straw-nach-ana: Servings-2
Strawberries - 10, frozen
Spinach - 2 handfulls
Banana - 1 medium sized (fresh or frozen)
Vanilla flavored Soymilk -  1 cup (I use the light version, which is like 70 calories/serving)

Add all the ingredients to the blender and blend until you get a smoothie! Add more or less soymilk depending on how your blender blends.

Spinach island: Servings - 2
Mixed frozen fruits (mango, peach, pineapple) - 1 to 1 1/2 handfuls
Banana - 1 medium
Spinach - 2 handfuls
Vanilla flavored soymilk - 1 cup

Go Green: Servings -  2
Avocado - 1 medium
Spinach - 2 handfuls
Fat-free Vanilla frozen yogurt - 1 cup (I did not use the soymilk here, as the avocado is not strong enough to mask the flavor of the spinach. So, we get the extra support from the frozen yogurt and its sweetness)

Green berry: Servings - 2
Mixed frozen berries - 2 handfuls
Spinach -2 handfuls
Vanilla flavored soymilk - 1 cup

If you are still not convinced about making it, then I say you should definitely try it once, because,
(1) It is all the stuff that is good for you - Fresh greens, fruits, milk, soymilk, yogurt, flax seed, egg whites,......C'mon, it doesn't get better than this!
(2) Even if you have 2 servings of it in the morning for a breakfast, it will still look good on the calorie count(less than 400 calories for 2 servings) and will keep you full for more than 3 hours!
(3) Anything else as healthy as this, whipped up in two minutes???!!!
(4) Once you start your day with such healthy and guilt-free stuff, chances are more that you will stay good the entire day and not indulge in a junk-food :)

Think Green and Drink Green !!!

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