Last summer our family went to the county fair to celebrate JZ's fourth birthday. I was near the end of my pregnancy with the twins and was unable to spend much time on my feet, so my husband and parents took turns wheeling me around the fairgrounds in a wheelchair. (I wonder if I can get away with that next year? Just kidding...)
Anyway, a few days before our fair excursion one of my best friends told me about the Vitamix she and her husband had recently purchased. She told me all the benefits and described how easy it was to use. The biggest selling point to me was that she hates vegetables and never eats them. Since getting the Vitamix she started making smoothies with veggies in them. I love veggies, but I probably don't get as many as I should each day. If someone who hates them gets a good amount with a Vitamix , I figured I should be able to up my intake quite a bit.
At the fair there was a Vitamix booth with a demonstration. I told my mom to park me in front of it while she walked around the other booths. During my time spent watching the demonstration I sampled a green smoothie full of spinach and fruit; taco soup full of carrots, squash, zucchini and tomatoes; and strawberry ice cream made from strawberries and milk with carrots and cabbage in it. All three samples were amazing both in taste and texture. What sealed the deal for me was how easy the Vitamix is to clean. Simply put hot water and a tiny bit of dishwashing soap in it and run it on high for a minute. Rinse it, and you are done. There isn't any scrubbing or unscrewing pieces like all of my previous blenders or the Magic Bullet.
When Mike walked up and saw me caught up in the presentation I think he could tell we weren't leaving there without a Vitamix of our own. It was well worth every penny we spent. Very few days go by when I don't use it, and many days I use it more than once.
My favorite green smoothie recipe is one I tweaked a bit from what I saw in the demonstration.
Click on each food item to read about the nutritional benefits.
Wash all fruits and vegetables first. The easiest way to be sure to get everything clean and safe to eat is to wash in warm water with a tiny drop of Dawn dishwashing liquid soap. Be sure to rinse.
Add the grapes to the Vitamix first, because they make it juicy when blended and help the blades to continue grinding everything else. I use a heaping handful of grapes. I prefer the taste of green grapes with this recipe, but I tend to buy whichever are cheaper since it doesn't make a huge difference.
The next several ingredients are not added in any particular order. I took pictures to demonstrate how much of each food I use. I leave the skin on the ginger and slice a tiny piece for my drink. Ginger is a natural antacid and can help with stomach pain. It has anti-inflammatory effects.
I wash but don't peel the carrot.
The pineapple and orange are the only fruits I peel. I leave as much of the pith on the orange as possible since it is full of Vitamin C.
Finally, add a couple handfuls of spinach, then top with ice.
I collect the peels and scraps in an old milk jug then carry out to our compost heap.
The final product is a tropical treat. The citrus flavors hide the spinach and carrot, so if you aren't a fan of either this is a great way to get these antioxidant rich foods into your diet. The above portions make enough for JZ, JM and me. For some reason JM won't drink his own, but he likes to share mine. To be sure all of us get enough I make JM's and mine in the Venti cup. If you make this recipe in a blender be sure to add water or juice to prevent the motor from overheating.