Quite often, you will see "Smoothies" on our menu plans. My family really loves these and by adding different fruits, each drink can be customized to each person. (Although, I'm usually not THAT generous!)
The base for all of our smoothies is yogurt. Not the cheap, mass produced, little cups of corn syrup, but the good stuff. The kind that comes in a large container and says "organic", or even better, the kind that came from our own yogurt maker! (If you don't have a yogurt maker, it is a great investment and so easy to do!)
A good yogurt is going to have a lot of unrecognizable words in the ingredients. Some of those words are; L. acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, S. thermophilus and bifidobacterium lactis. They are our bacteria friends! These bacteria are beneficial to our bodies by increasing the acidity of the intestine and curbing the reproduction of many harmful bacteria. They help to break down the sugars and fight infections.
Fruit is almost as important as the yogurt. By adding the right fruits, you can replace vitamins and minerals that are lost during times of sickness and stress. Here is a list of some of the fruits we use and why.
Raspberries...High in Vitamins A & C, (which are antioxidants), high in fiber
Blueberries...Highest content of antioxidants, known as a "superfood"
Strawberries...Another "superfood" that is high in antioxidants
Bananas...High in potassium, this mineral is vital in controlling the body's water balance and for proper muscle contractions. Bananas are also high in fiber and have the title of "The World's Most Perfect Food". (Freezing the peeled bananas is best for smoothies!)
Plums...High in antioxidants which enhance the immune system
There are others that we use like; mangoes, pineapple, and peaches, which are also high in Vitamin C.
To sweeten a smoothie, add a teaspoon of pure maple syrup, raw honey or a few drops of liquid Stevia. (Vanilla is great!)
Before blending, you have to add a liquid to thin things down a little. Pure fruit juice or a high-quality milk are good choices. We usually use raw, organic milk in our smoothies. Since they aren't heated, we are able to reap the full benefits of the raw milk.
1 cup good organic yogurt
1 frozen banana, chunked
2 cups frozen fruit of choice
1-2 teaspoons pure maple syrup, honey or 10 drops of liquid stevia (or to taste)
1 cup milk or fruit juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (omit if using vanilla yogurt)
Blend together. Makes 2.