In my opinion there really isn't much to smoothie making, and being a somewhat lazy chef, I seldom follow recipes. There is wisdom however in occasionally trying out a smoothie recipe from another's repertoire, as I found a couple of months ago when adapting this recipe from an IsoWhey newsletter that arrived on my desk. Pure gold! Definitely a winner for the taste buds there. Check out this recipe for the Rasberry Coconut Water Smoothie.
Measurements are also a tricky thing when making a smoothie. If you are freestyling with what you've got on hand to pop into your blender, it is quite easy to overdo things and end up with novelty size glasses of delicious liquid. The answer to this problem is… smoothies are made to share! Alternately, if there are no willing participants for your smoothie experiment, they also work really well in popsicle moulds for a creamy frozen treat on a future hot day.
Rules for a successful smoothie
- The main ingredients for a smoothie are fruit, protein powder of your choice and milk. Easy! Start simple if you are introducing smoothies to children or those not appreciative of new tastes. Aka, fussy friends, parents, husbands etc. Banana and berry is pretty much something any palate can appreciate. Pair it with vanilla, plain or chocolate protein powders and your choice of milk, coconut water, juice or water and you're set.
- Freeze your bananas! This is one of the easiest ways to make a smoothie irresistibly creamy. That hand of bananas getting decidedly ripe in your fruit bowl has a fabulous destiny you never imagined when you bought too many at the fruit shop. Peel and chop before popping into a freezer proof container. I try to always chop a banana into 8 pieces. That way, 4 pieces will always be around half a banana, when estimating serves. In addition, ice is also a great addition to your smoothie's texture, especially on a hot day.
- The hidden depths of a smoothie can disguise many an otherwise tiresome supplement to swallow. Cracking the capsules of a probiotic, sprinkling in some calcium powder, soluble fibre like inulin or more nutty flavours like flax meal, psyllium or chia seeds can flex your smoothie muscles in terms of food as medicine. Healthy oils like flaxseed or evening primrose can also blend well, and let's not forget yoghurt! A dollop of creamy goodness with digestive assistants can easily synchronise with other smoothie ingredients.
- Let's talk about spices! This is especially relevant if you are attempting a smoothie in cooler months. Cinnamon and ginger are warming favourites of mine however, turmeric can work well in a mango and banana smoothie, for an extra anti-inflammatory punch.
That's pretty much it. If you're making something experimental or you're putting in greens for the first time, go slow and blend up the usual things first. Taste as you go, both before and after adding the new ingredients. That way you can pick the point of no return for next time if it tastes somewhat “healthy” but you're unsure if you're actually keen on making it again 😉 Science experiments in the kitchen? Always 🙂