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Blaugust 6: 3-Ingredient Tropical Smoothie


I love a good smoothie. I drink a lot of them in the summertime, more than the winter (usually, but in fact all bets are off in terms of seasonal eating. I rarely have soup, stew, or chowder in the summertime but it could happen. I never drink iced coffee in the winter. But I love a cold margarita anytime). They’re easily customizable, taste good, and are pretty healthy, as long as you avoid ice cream or frozen yogurt as an ingredient. That’s what turns it into a milkshake…

Today for lunch I made a simple smoothie that would probably be better suited to a beach in the Caribbean. It was simple and fast to make. Smoothies aren’t always as filling as one might need (so if you’re extra hungry, add another thing to your lunch that has protein and nutrients that will actually fill you up), but this one was tasty and satisfying.

Here’s what it included:

1 frozen banana (a fresh one would also work)

Equivalent amount of frozen mango chunks (“chunks” always seems like a terrible word to include in a recipe)

Coconut almond milk not quite covering the frozen ingredients

That’s it! I’ve got to say, coconut almond milk is HEAVEN. I feel like it needs to be one of my kitchen staples. Budgeting and avoiding the grocery store has usually meant I’ve skipped buying it lately in favor of regular almond or soy milk. But those do not compare…

Smoothies are wonderful to make because you don’t actually need a recipe. Take the ingredients you want and combine them, make sure you have enough liquid to deal with the whole ingredients, and blend until it’s smooth. What ingredients would you use for a relatively healthy but delicious tropical smoothie?

Smoothie Lament


I have been getting really into making smoothies in the last month or two. Once it started getting warmer. I put bananas and avocados and kale and lots of frozen berries and almond milk in them. Not all at once. But sometimes all at once. And they were SO delicious. And a great way to get in a lot of fruit–and some vegetables, but I’m not a big fan of vegetable smoothies.

Then, guess what happened? I made a smoothie, and my blender started smelling like it was burning. My options are: a. discontinue use of blender or b. risk burning down the house. It’s probably not a huge risk, but it might short out the outlet or something even if it doesn’t actually burn down the house. Either way, not good. So I’m going with option a.

I have always loved smoothies, and I especially love them in the summer. I’m unlikely to get a new blender soon, so this means I have to find a good smoothie place. This is a problem. There are tons of places where you can buy smoothies. I don’t mean pre-bottled ones, but the blended-to-order kind. However, it seems rather more difficult to find a place that makes really good smoothies. Somewhere they use at least some fresh–not frozen–ingredients, and no juice from concentrate. As far as I know, there are none of those in my neighborhood. Purple Cactus makes pretty tasty smoothies, but I’ve seen them being made, and they’re using mostly frozen fruit. I think almost everywhere I could go for a really good smoothie would require a train ride. And really… is that worth it? Probably not.

So I guess I’ll be drinking a lot less smoothies than I thought I would this summer.

Lonely (Relaxing) Dining: Life Alive, Central Sq.


This morning I scheduled a massage to use my living social coupon. It was at 10am, which is usually a time when I’ve just gotten up and am introducing myself to the weekend, on Saturday mornings. I rarely leave the house that early on a weekend day. Only if I have a specific reason.

Since I was so close I decided to go to Life Alive afterward, which is an organic vegetarian eatery with AMAZING smoothies. I had a “Sufi Poet” salad (I have no idea why they call it that), which was light but substantial enough for me, with really good flavors, and reminded me how much I enjoy dried cranberries on salads. I also got a Coconut Alive smoothie, and it was just perfect.

I know this picture is dark. The lighting is very dim in the cozy corner where I was sitting for this meal.

I know this picture is dark. The lighting is very dim in the cozy corner where I was sitting for this meal.

So, I sat on one of their little loveseat benches and read my book while consuming this delicious food. I ordered a demi salad, and it was still a pretty good size. I don’t even think I could finish a full sized one. I’ve been wanting to try their other, cooked dishes. I really want to get The Fool. Anyone ever had it? Did you like it?

It was rainy today, and a little colder than I was prepared for (I didn’t have any socks on–oops), but not too bad, since the rain was that misty drizzle type that gets you a little damp at the most. Not like Friday, when it was pouring down all evening. Glad I wore boots then. So as I was walking between the massage place and central square, I was in a really good mood, despite being kind of cold. After my nice lunch I was still in a pretty good mood, although it was starting to rain a bit more. Shoe shopping was really the only thing to do before heading back home.

I went to DSW with a $10 coupon. I was looking for shoes I can wear to work, something fairly comfortable but nice and pretty, maybe a little different. The ones I found are bright green, so I think I succeeded there. I also got some stuff for play, because it was drastically reduced. There was a red leopard wallet the tag on which said “compare at $40.” I looked at it and thought, I would never pay $40 for this. You know how much I actually paid for it, according to my receipt? $7. So. Yeah.

Look for the red, 70% off tags in clearance, because DAMN.

Look for the red, 70% off tags in clearance, because DAMN.

 

If you think I saved that much and still paid a lot, think again…

As for cooking adventures, I haven’t been having them much lately. Nothing worth posting about anyway. I have a brief post to write about a stir-fry I made the other day, which was pretty good, but otherwise all I’ve been making is things like eggs, bagel sandwiches, salads, etc. No one wants to read about that. If you think you do, you’re wrong.

I’ve actually been feeling quite unenthusiastic about food lately. Not sure why. Every time I think I really want a particular thing, I usually decide not to because the more I consider it, the less sure I am that I want it. Most of my food choices lately have been solely based on money, and occasionally on going out to hang out with someone. The  only thing I’ve really been excited about, in general, is smoothies. I was really happy about going to Life Alive today, though, so that was something.

I got beans the last time I went shopping, intending to make chili before it got too hot to enjoy it, but then I lost interest. I think I’ll get more chicken and make tikka masala instead.

 

Lonely dining: smoothie time!


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Raspberry mango smoothie from Temptations Cafe in Coolidge Corner, Brookline. I didn’t ask what they put in it, but I assume raspberries and mangoes are two of the main ingredients. It’s very tasty.

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