Merry Christmas! I hope you spent a nice dinner yesterday and that you don't have an overdose of relatives and hugs yet (we still have to celebrate New Year, remember?).
Usually I do, but because this year I am not going to Russia for holidays at least I will safe myself the relatives who think that I am some kind of teddy bear which can be squashed, squeezed and hugged while I am trying to breath and not to bring up all the food I have eaten. It is already a problem to see friends and family when you are in Russia because every time you pay a visit (even if you told them you only have fifty minutes!) they set a table full of pancakes, tea and all kind of sweet and savory treats. So imagine in Christmas....
I remember that my godfather, for who a stack of pancakes is a required element in case of visitors, was almost shocked when I told him that I didn't eat eggs or milk anymore (being a vegan in Russia, where sour cream and butter are as essential as water, is something worse than being an alien).I think that this hospitality with friends and relatives contrasts with the coldness and indifference that Russian people show with strangers (and I don't mean foreigners: I mean other Russian people)
Because I am sure that we all have indulged ourselves more than we should last night, I thought it would be better to post something light (I have a recipe for the coffee brownies I cooked for our Christmas table, but I decided I'm going to save it for later). I have posted a couple of green smoothie recipes before (see Basic green smoothie and Chocolate green smoothie), but because there are endless combination I feel like I could post dozens of them!
For today's smoothie you will need a juicer (trying to squeeze a beetroot with a lemon-squeezer can be quite unproductive) as well as a blender, but I suppose it's not a big deal (because you must have a juicer! If not, now you know what you should ask for Christmas next year). The process is simple: make the juice, add it to the blender, put first the veggies (cabbage in this case, but you can use spinach or kale) in small amounts and don't add the fruit until it is all completely blended, playing with the proportions until you like the taste. If you are not used to eat greens this way, I would recommend adding more fruit than veggies, but it's up to you.
Have you realized that every day more and more people have green smoothies? It's not only the green smoothies: all the raw movement is trendy, and I think it's great. I especially like the approach of Gena of Choosing Raw: she is what people call "high raw", because she also eat cooked food. I would not be able to go 100% raw, and I would not like either. I think there are some nutrients we can't get only from raw food and we shouldn't be extremist. In this sense, Gena`s principle is wise: listen to your body. If it's snowing outside and you feel like having a soup, and not kale salad....do it!
I also read in his blog about food combining, and this is the reason why this time I didn't add nuts. She also posted a raw Christmas menu (I know it's a little bit late, but you can use it for New Year)
Bloody "Green" Smoothie with pears
Juice of :
1 beetroot, small
1 pear, medium
5 dried figs
3 or 4 leafs of cabbage
a handful of parsley
1 tsp of tahini
1 Tbsp ground flaxseeds
Put the four first ingredients in the juicer. Add the lemon juice (I do it with a lemon-squeezer)Put all the juices in the blender. Add the dried figs. Pulse. Add the parsley. Pulse again. Add first the cabbage and at the end the pear, roughly chopped and seeded.
**I discovered than adding first the harder ingredients (like the figs or the greens, which have a lot of cellulose) makes a better blended and smooth....smoothie (doesn't it sound redundant?) Greens are great, and despite what people think they are tasty, but I don't like finding pieces of cabbage in my smoothies.
Add the tahini and the ground flaxseeds. Blend and taste it. If it is too strong, add extra fruit or a sweeter of your choice. Chop the reserved pear and half of an avocado in little pieces. Add it after blending. If you don't like "chunky" smoothies, you can blend it too.
4) Enjoy your delicious AND healthy treat :)