Pineapple & Banana Green Smoothie

Sep 13, 2011   //   by myrakelly   //   Blog, Recipes  //  3 Comments

Now that bananas are starting to come down in price here in Australia I can afford to have them in my green smoothies for breakfast again. Oh bananas how I have missed you! Finally my drinks are creamy again. Prices have been up at around $18kg over the winter as a lot of the crops were damaged in the Queensland floods. Now you can find conventionally grown bananas in the markets for as low as $6kg. Just in time for when your body starts craving more fruit!

Pineapple & Banana Green Smoothie

Sweet Ripe Pineapple*

Ripe Spotty Bananas

Curly Kale, stalks removed

Fresh Mint Leaves

Water


I just filled my blender about 1/3 full of broken up bananas, 1/3 full of cubed pineapple, 1/6 of kale, a few mint leaves and then poured in water to around half way. There are no rules for making green smoothies though. Use less water if you like a thick smoothie or more if you like it juicy. The flavour will depend on the produce you have available and what suits your tastebuds.

Blend in vitamix until ultra smooth

I like to drink my smoothies out of a 1L widemouth mason jar with a glass dharma straw. They’re great for taking a smoothie along to work.

* A ripe pineapple should smell sweet and have quite a yellow skin. Unripe pinapples will give you that tart burning feeling on your tongue if you eat too much, so try to  pick a nice ripe pineapple.

Green Smoothies 101

Oct 14, 2009   //   by Kelly   //   Blog, Raw Food Tips  //  2 Comments

greensmoothie

So, many of you who are brand spanking new to this whole raw thing might be wondering what the big deal is with green smoothies. What’s so great about them? How many greens do I use? What kind of equipment do I need? How much do I need to make? How long will it keep for? Why can’t I just eat a salad? Or even just where to get started.  So this is a short guide that will hopefully answer many of those questions. Just a few things I have learned over the past couple of years. The good news is that it’s easy, it’s delicious and no, it won’t just taste like spinach.

What’s a Green Smoothie?

A green smoothie is a combination of tender green leaves blended with fruit and water. Pretty much any greens and any fruit you like.

Why should I drink green smoothies?

Green smoothies are very alkalising on the body, and an alkaline body is a healthy body. Disease loves an acidic environment, so the more alkalising food you can eat the better. They are full of vitamins and minerals and good types of carbohydrates. Greens are full of chlorophyll straight from the sun, which is very cleansing for the blood, making you smell nicer! Many people have cured themselves of all sorts of health problems by incorporating green smoothies into their diet. Your body is an amazing machine, if you give it the right fuel, it knows how to heal itself.

What’s the ratio of fruit to greens to water?

This is up to you really. You might want to start off with around 25% greens until you get used to it and then slowly build that up to as much as you like. Ideally if you are doing a 1 litre smoothie you should be looking at about the equivalent of 1 head of lettuce or more. The amount of water is also up to you. Some people like a thick soupy smoothie that you might even choose to eat like a pudding while other people like it thin and watery. Keep in mind though if you are going to make it a thin consistency you’ll probably want to make more overall so you can still get a good amount of fruits and greens in.

What kind of greens should I use?

You want to use any type of green leafy vegetable that is soft enough to wrap around your finger. Things like cabbage or broccoli are too starchy and don’t mix well with fruit. Spinach is a great one to start with as it has a mild flavour and blends easily. Among the many other greens to try are silverbeet, chard, many types of lettuce, romaine or cos lettuce is a great one, parsley, celery leaves, mint, coriander, beetroot tops, kale, cavolo nero, asian greens like bok choy, or wild greens like dandelions, cleavers or sorrel. You might even like to try a mixture. It is important to rotate your greens though. Don’t just stick to one kind. Greens have a very small amount of alkaloids in them so your body won’t like it if you overdose on one type of greens for an extended period of time. So try curly kale one day, spinach the next, then parsley and so on.

What kind of fruit should I use?

Whatever tastes good to you. You could stick to one type or use a few. I do suggest using what is fresh, local and in season if you can although it is nice to have a few frozen berries now and then. Bananas make an excellent base for a creamy smoothie and blend well with most other types of fruit. Then you have a whole variety of things to choose from, berries, citrus fruits, apples pears, tropicals fruits like pineapples and mangoes, you might like to add a some fresh dates for extra sweetness or throw in a few goji berries or raisins after you’ve blended for something to chew on.

Why blend? Why not just chew the greens?

Many people are not used to eating greens, especially a large amount of greens. It may make some people feel nausous due to low hydrochloric acid levels in the stomach. Blending greens with fruits makes them more palettable and easier on the stomach. Eventually the hydrochloric acid levels will normalise and you’ll be able to handle more greens. Blending allows the cell walls of the greens to be broken up, releasing more of the nutrients and breaking up the fibres a lot more. Often when we chew, we don’t really chew our food enough and it would take a long time to get through a giant bunch of kale! Of course it’s great to get in some extra greens with a salad or two, but green smoothies are just a quick easy way to eat your greens. It’s also a great way to hide them if you are trying to get your kids to eat them, or if you aren’t really into the taste of greens on their own. They are also handy if you are busy working and don’t have a lot of time to make a fancy meal.

When should I drink my green smoothie?

If you aren’t eating a full raw food diet you are going to want to drink your green smoothie before consuming heavier foods or quite a few hours after. Fruit digests very fast and if you eat it after foods that digest more slowly, like starchy foods or fats or grains or animal foods (if that’s something you are still using in your diet) then the fruit will have digested and starts to ferment on top of the other food, creating gas and digestive troubles and ultimately leave you feeling tired or cause things like candida. If you are eating foods that digest easily like other fruit, salads, steamed vegetables and so on then the timing is not as important. I like to have mine for breakfast, mid morning or as part of my lunch (before eating other food). I also like to drink them after my hot yoga class in the evening to replace the energy I’ve just used up. I don’t really like to eat anything too heavy that late in the evening, so a green smoothie is great.

How much should I drink each day?

Ideally you want to be drinking at least a litre to experience the full benefits of green smoothies. This means you are either drinking it as a whole meal or over the course of a morning or splitting it into a couple of smaller smoothies to drink during the day. If you’re not ready for that much just yet then start with as much as you can and slowly build it up. Some people go on entire green smoothie feasts where they drink only green smoothies and experience amazing and rapid results like weight loss or curing all sorts of diseases and health ailments.

What kind of blender do I need?

If you already have a blender, great, use that. Of course if you are really serious about it you’re going to want to get a high speed blender to pulverise those fruits ad greens. Look at getting something around 1000w or more. The lower quality blenders just don’t blend the greens very well and you end up with a pretty chunky smoothie. Here in New Zealand I use a Breville Icon 1000w Blender. The two most popular blenders in the raw food community seem to be the Vitamix or the Blendtec which aren’t really available here.

How long will my green smoothie keep for?

It’s definitely better to drink your smoothie fairly soon after making it, but it will keep a day or two in a jar in the fridge. It’s better to have a day old smoothie than none at all. One of my favourite containers to use is a wide mouth glass mason jar. It’s easy to carry them to work, the lids have a good seal so you don’t get green smoothie leakage in your bag and you just pop the lid off and drink it straight from the jar. I also like to keep my food in glass as plastic can leach toxins into your food.

Well that’s a few of the things I have learned over the last couple of years. I hope they are helpful. There are are great number of people more knowledgeable on the subject than I, so I have included a few resources below for further reading and viewing. I definitely recommend doing your own research. It’s your body and nobody knows it like you do.

Now get blending!

Green Smoothie Resources
Green For Life by Victoria Boutenko. She is the woman who made the green smoothie so well known in the raw food movement. Her book gets right into the details of it all and it’s a really easy read. Her FAQ’s on green smoothies are here.

Here are a few videos that demonstrate making a green smoothie it a lot better than I can explain it:

Sergei Boutenko talking about and making a green smoothie

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xW5LUkeVA6s&hl=en&fs=1&]

Victoria Boutenko talking about green smoothies

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uUlJZD-RzEM&hl=en&fs=1&]

Karen Knowler demonstrating green smoothies

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZFm9_6BTCHM&hl=en&fs=1&]

Green Smoothie Lecture Notes

Feb 26, 2009   //   by myrakelly   //   Uncategorized  //  2 Comments

I went along to Victoria and Valya Boutenko’s talk in Wellington last night. Although I knew their story well from reading Green for Life it was great to hear Victoria tell it in person. She talked about a lot of things I am going to try and implement in my own life.

Here are a few points I took away from the lecture:

  1. You should try to get in 1-2 litres of green smoothie per day.
  2. The best time to drink your smoothie is from 6am-noon as that is when your body can assimilate the nutrients most effectively.
  3. You should try to sip away at your smoothie rather than gulping it all down at once.
  4. Green Smoothie will keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator whereas juice needs to be consumed right away or else it oxidises.
  5. You should rotate your greens, don’t just stick to one or two.
  6. You should get in 2 big bunches of greens a day. (A bunch would be something like a head of lettuce or a bunch of silverbeet)
  7. If you blend your greens you can assimilate more of the nutrients, so you don’t need as many as when you eat them whole.
  8. If you’re new to green smoothies you might like to start off with a 70/30 ratio of fruit to greens and gradually move to a 30/70 ratio as you get used to the greens.
  9. You should use greens that are able to be rolled around in your fingers. Things like broccoli or cabbage are too starchy and will create gas when combined with fruits.
  10. Greens are in a separate category to vegetables.
  11. Don’t mix in supplements with your green smoothie, it causes your body to concentrate on those rather than the minerals in the greens. Save your supplements for another smoothie.
  12. The best time to pick your greens is before they have flowers or have gone to seed. Once this happens the plant sends all the nutrients into the flower and then into the seed.
  13. Diabetes and Candida are not caused by too much sugar. You don’t need to cut out sugar. It’s actually caused by too much fat. What happens when you eat sugar is the pancreas send out some insulin to bind with the sugar in your bloodstream. If you have too much fat in your blood both the sugar and insulin are coated with fat and can’t bind together which is where the problems are caused. Dr Doug Graham has similar research on this. She said that you can cut out all fat for one week and you should see an improvement. After that you’ll also find that your body doesn’t want so much fat anymore.

If you were at the lecture as well please comment below about what you learned!

You can read more about Victoria Boutenko and her family here.

Please remember, I’m not a doctor, this is just a blog, so be sensible and do your own research.

Green Smoothie Revolution!

Feb 23, 2009   //   by myrakelly   //   Uncategorized  //  No Comments

I’ve had a few requests recently to post up some green smoothie recipes so I thought it would coincide nicely leading up to the Green Smoothie Revolution talks around New Zealand right now. If you’re already into raw food you’ll no doubt know all about the green smoothie but for those of you who don’t here’s the lowdown.

The basic green smoothie recipe is so easy your kids could and should make it. Take some green leafy veges and blend with fruit and water. That’s it. You’ll eventually come up with your own favourite combinations and it’s best to use what is growing seasonally and locally.

Here’s a few of my favourite blends.

Kale, Banana, Tangelo, Spring Water

Kale, Banana, Yellow Plums, Spring Water, topped with goji berries (as shown above)

Spinach, Strawberry, Mint, Banana, Spring Water

Banana, Swiss Chard, Blueberries, Goji Berries, Coconut, Spirulina, Bee Pollen, Spring Water

Savoury: Spinach, Avocado, Red Capsicum, Tomato, Unpasteurised Miso Paste, Alfalfa Sprouts, Zucchini, Cucumber, Lemon Juice, Tamari, Spring Water. You can eat this version in a bowl like a soup with chunks of tomato and avocado. So good on a hot day.

Greens are so vital for our health, they provide so many nutrients and minerals that we should try to get them in wherever we can. So that’s why the green smoothie is so great. Kids love them too. It’s a good way to hide the greens if you aren’t that into the flavour. The taste of the fruit cancels out the chlorophyll taste of the greens. If you’re just starting out, I recommend a nice mildly flavoured green like spinach which is really high in protein. Ditch the multivitamins and try drinking a 500ml glass or more of green smoothie a day and see how great you feel after a week.

Here’s a great demonstration from the lovely Karen Knowler

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZFm9_6BTCHM&hl=en&fs=1]

If you’re in Wellington or Christchurch you’re in luck! The green smoothie queen herself is doing a tour of Australasia during February. Victoria Boutenko and her daughter Valya are doing a series of talks all about green smoothies and all things raw vegan. You can get more info about the Boutenko family here.

February 26th:
Wellington, New Zealand

When: Thurs 26 Feb. 6.30pm – 9.30pm
Where: Wellington Central Baptist Church, 46 Boulcott Street, Wellington Central
(free parking at the Tournament Car park building opposite)
Cost: $30 reduced to $25 if paid by 20 Feb.
For bookings & enquires: www.purewellbeing.com or phone Wgtn 04-384 7070
or email health@purewellbeing.com

Feb. 28th Christchurch, New Zealand
When: Sat. 28 Feb. 2:00pm – 5:00pm
Where: Christchurch Netball Centre
Hagley Park, central Christchurch
Cost: $25 (registration essential)
For bookings & enquiries: email on kaz@xtra.co.nz or by
texting or calling 027 339 0051.
Messages can also be left on 03 343 2022.