06 / 28 / 2013

A Chocolate Milkshake

by Rhona Kamar

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Meet the Chocolate Milkshake of your dreams. With the cherished flavor of chocolate, but unrefined and with fiber and micronutrients. The defining cold and milky feel, but without the fat and hormones of milk. The sweetness, by way of a super ripe banana and raw honey, with their unique mineral contributions. Underneath all of that, the healing power of green leafy things – spinach, spirulina, etc, with not a hint of their inherent grassy flavors. And to your liking, a choice of other super foods that contribute flavor nuances and additional powerful nutrients.

This is a foundational smoothie recipe that you can follow blindly, or change it up every time. Listen to your mood. Play around with the optional ingredients as well as the quantities suggested here. Blend, then taste, then decide if you want more chocolate or more cinnamon or this or that. Or decide that, next time, you will leave the cinnamon out. This recipe is a template for you.

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About the Ingredients

Raw cacao is not the same as processed cocoa powder. It has not been refined – in other words, stripped of all nutrients.

Milk alternatives: Experiment with the many kinds of milk alternatives today. Don’t get stuck on soy. There’s a lot of controversy around it these days and really there are much creamier choices. Coconut milk, flaxseed and almond are favorites that have more body and have a mouth feel closer to cows’ milk. Hemp milk also has a ton of nutrients. Buy them shelf stable so that you always have them on hand. Organic and unsweetened is preferable.

Green powder: this ingredient is optional. There are so many different green powder blends at your local healthy grocery store. My favorite right now is anything from Amazing Grass. They are certified organic, raw and vegan and full of probiotics and densely nutritious grasses like wheatgrass and chorella. A good green powder is also a steep initial purchase, but one bottle lasts for months. To achieve vibrant health and glowing skin, acquiring a taste and habit for using green powder is imperative.

Maca is a suggested ingredient here, completely optional. Maca powder is considered a super food with its’ unique mineral profile and is high in protein. I love its deep caramelized vanilla flavor.

Sweetener: The recipe suggests raw, local honey. You can also use agave, but because of the conflicting studies on its nutritional make up, always buy raw and organic. Maple syrup is a good alternative, providing its’ own unique personality. Stevia is the go-to choice if you are avoiding sugar completely. Or use a little stevia to build a sweet foundation and then finish with a smaller amount of honey or agave.

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THE RECIPE

16 ounces of unsweetened coconut, flaxseed, almond, hemp or soy milk
1 tablespoon of raw cacao powder
One half ripe banana
or one quarter ripe avocado (You may need to increase your sweetener a bit)
One half tablespoon green powder
Small handful of fresh spinach
One quarter inch fresh ginger, peeled
One teaspoon ground cinnamon (again, more or less to your liking)
1 teaspoon of ground maca, optional
One half tablespoon of raw honey or raw organic agave, to start
One teaspoon of vanilla extract, optional

Put all of these ingredients into your blender and process until the spinach is fully broken down and has disappeared into the smoothie. Now taste. Make your adjustments, more honey, more milk, etc. and blend again. Taste again. Once the flavor is right where you want it, add a handful of ice and blend until smooth.

If you aren’t sharing and you can’t finish the whole batch, leftovers make a great afternoon treat. Just freshen it up with more ice.

Authors’ Note: This recipe was created for Lyssa Miller Dragoo, who will hopefully never drink a plain yogurt spinach smoothie again!

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