Creamy Basil Mint Mango Smoothie

Ingredients:

1/2 mango, diced, frozen

1-2 bananas, diced, frozen

1/2 avocado

1 Medjool date, pitted

1-2 C Spinach

about 1/2 C (or two very large leaves) kale

4-6 basil leaves (I use Thai basil because that’s what I have in my garden)

about 1 Tbsp. fresh peppermint

1 C water for blending

Directions:

Although this smoothie is fun layered, I really recommend blending everything together to fully enjoy how each of the ingredients compliment one another.  Add all ingredients to blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy!

Nilla Nana Pluot Smoothie

Ingredients:

2 bananas, frozen

2 pluots, pitted, frozen

1 C unsweetened vanilla flax milk

1-2 C kale, chard, spinach mix, packed

1 Tbsp. chia seeds

Directions:

For a layered smoothie, add all of the ingredients to the blender except the greens and chia seeds and blend until smooth.  Empty half of the contents into a glass.  Add the greens to the blender and blend again until smooth.  Empty the rest of the contents into a glass and top with chia seeds.  Enjoy!

Yin Yang Mango Pineapple Smoothie

Ingredients:

1 small mango, frozen

3/4-1 C pineapple, frozen

1 or 2 bananas, frozen

1 in. finger ginger

1-2 C kale, chard, spinach mix, packed

1-2 C water

1 Tbsp. chia seeds

Directions:

For a layered smoothie, add 1/2 or 1 whole banana to the blender with the kale mix, 1/2-1 C water, and ginger and blend until smooth.  Empty into a glass.  Rinse out blender.  Add the pineapple, mango, remaining banana, and water to the blender and blend again until smooth.  Top off glass with second layer of smoothie and chia seeds.  Enjoy!

Mango Matcha Smoothie

It seems that all of my natural remedies for sinus pressure and congestion are working (see previous two blog posts), because when I woke up this morning, I had some of my taste back and even have more energy! To keep myself properly nourished while my immune system recovers, I added some extra fruit to my smoothie this morning [kiwi is high in vitamins C & K, bananas have potassium and are rich in pectin (which helps digestion), and mangoes and plums have antioxidants], along with matcha (again, packed with antioxidants, which help the process of cleansing the body), ginger (anti-inflammatory), and greens (also packed with vitamins).

Ingredients:

1 1/2 C Spinach

1/2-1 C Kale

1 Frozen banana

1/2-1 tsp. Matcha green tea powder

1 C Water

2 Ice cubes

1/2 in. Finger of ginger

1/2 Mango

1 Plum (take the pit out!)

1 Kiwi, peeled

1/2 C Water

*For a colder smoothie, freeze the mango, plum, and kiwi overnight*

Directions:

Add spinach, kale, frozen banana, matcha, ginger, and 1 C water to blender and blend until smooth.  Add two ice cubes.  Blend again until smooth.  Empty contents into glass.  Rinse out blender.  Add mango, plum, kiwi, and remaining water to the blender and blend until smooth. Empty contents into glass, and enjoy!  You can reverse the order as well, because the mango layer of the smoothie will be noticeably thicker than the spinach layer.

Zingiberaceae (ginger family) Wellness Smoothie

I’m still feeling under the weather, but this zingiberaceae (ginger family, which includes ginger and turmeric, and is well known for reducing inflammation) smoothie that I put together this morning actually seems to be helping with the inflammation of my sinuses, along with the Olbas cough syrup that I picked up from Outpost yesterday [which is an all-natural cough syrup made from honey, Olbas oil (A Swiss blend of peppermint, eucalyptus, cajeput, juniper, wintergreen, and clove oil), thyme, licorice, plantain, horse chestnut, and pine, and retails for around $8], and the 20-minute “Yoga for when you’re sick” video that I did earlier, and which you can find if you follow this link: https://youtu.be/n5YvtYXSocw

Ingredients:

1 C Spinach

1/2 C-1 C Kale

1 Frozen banana

1/2 in. finger of ginger (or less, if you don’t like ginger that much)

1 tsp. culinary matcha

1/2 a mango

1 frozen banana

1/2 in. (or less) finger of ginger

1/8-1tsp. turmeric (this really depends on whether or not you want to taste the turmeric)

1 1/2 C water

ice

Directions:

Blend the spinach, kale, one banana, one of the pieces of ginger, matcha, and about 1 C of water in a blender until smooth (adding the ice at the end if you wish to have a colder smoothie).  Empty contents into a glass.  Rinse out blender.  Blend the remaining ingredients in the blender until smooth.  Top off glass.  Stir if you wish. Enjoy!

A few other things that I’m doing for my cold/sinus infection are:

+Putting hot compresses on my face for 5 minutes or so every few hours

+Drinking lots of tea and water

+Using a eucalyptus tea tree chest rub that’s made by Tea Tree Therapy, which I bought back in January at my local health food store for $5 on sale (normally $8 I think), and which I still have over half a jar of.  This is a great natural chest rub to use, and I highly recommend using it as a substitution to Vick’s and the like.  You can also put a small bit underneath your nose and on the soles of your feet for extra relief!

+Getting more rest!

Roasted Turmeric Curry Chickpeas, Greens, and Rice

Tonight for dinner I decided to roast chickpeas (a good source of protein and fiber) and serve them over a bed of rice, spinach, and kale, and topped with mushrooms sauteed in coconut oil (which has healthy fat).  As I do with many things, I added turmeric, which is a particularly potent plant part of the ginger family.  Since ancient times, turmeric has been renowned for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties (just to name a few), and can even be used as a natural dye-so be aware that it will stain your hands, your dish rags, your pots and pans, and anything else that it gets on.  Turmeric also supposedly possesses the power of opening up the third eye-which is perfect for today’s theme of detox Monday.  With a slightly sharp taste resembling, but still dissimilar to, mustard and ginger, turmeric is an incredibly versatile seasoning to use in every day cooking, so don’t be afraid to try it in different things!

Here is my recipe for tonight’s turmeric-inspired meal:

Ingredients:

1 25-oz. can of organic chickpeas (or two smaller cans, it really doesn’t matter), rinsed (canned non-GMO/organic beans can be expensive, so buy them when they’re on sale and stock up)

1/2-1 1/2 tsp. (depending on how much you love it) Turmeric (powder)

1/4 tsp. Cayenne pepper (powder)

1 1/2-2 tsp. Balti Curry Seasoning (or any curry that you wish)

(seasoning measurements are estimates, as I season to taste and appearance)

Cooked white basmati rice or rice of your choice (organic white basmati rice cooks for about 20 minutes covered on low-heat after boiling, and the water:rice ratio is 2:1) (cook extra if you want to save time and use leftovers to make lunch or dinner the next day!) (As a reference point, I made 2 cups of rice uncooked, I ate about 1 1/2-2 cups with my dinner and Mike the same, and I have about 5 cups left over)

2 C Spinach

2 C Kale

1 C Mushrooms

1-2 Tbsp. Olive oil

1 Tbsp. Coconut oil

Pink Himalayan salt to taste (you won’t need much, as Himalayan salt is quite flavorful)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (for crispier chickpeas that are great for snacking, cook at 425 or 450 for 30-40 minutes). Line a baking sheet with foil (I use foil made with recycled aluminum to help support the reuse and elimination of waste, but it is just fine to use the normal stuff).  After rinsing and drying the chickpeas, lay them out on the foil and drizzle them with the olive oil.  Sprinkle the seasonings and salt on the chickpeas and shake the chickpeas around on the pan until they are coated.  Put the chickpeas in the oven and cook for 20-35 minutes, agitating them a few times as they cook in order to roast them evenly.

In the meantime, you can cook your rice if you haven’t already, and it should be done around the same time as your chickpeas are!

In a pre-heated saute pan, add about 1/4-1/2 C of water and the spinach and kale.  Cook on medium heat until ready, about 4 minutes (the greens will be much smaller, flat, and dark green).

In a different pre-heated pan (or the same pan, if you want to save time), add the coconut oil, and then the mushrooms and saute until the mushrooms become soft, about 3 or 4 minutes.

After taking the chickpeas out of the oven, top a bed of rice with some of the spinach, kale, and mushrooms (I made this recipe to make 2-3 servings of the veggies), and then some chickpeas (1/2 C-1 C is a reasonable serving of the chickpeas), or just put it all together in a bowl and you’re good to go!