Saturday, July 10, 2010
Frozen Fruit Smoothie
I mentioned on my other blog yesterday that I recently developed the bad habit of stopping at McDonald's for a Caramel Frappe whenever I was out and happened to pass by the golden arches. They are very yummy, and as I was standing inside a McDonald's once (before I ever tasted one) watching the staff make them, it looked like they had authentic ingredients. The frappes are very addictive, and I decided if I was going to continue to indulge I was going to first research the ingredients. Click away now if you don't want to know: "water, cream, sugar, milk, high fructose corn syrup, coffee extract, natural (botanical source) and artificial flavors, mono- and diglycerides, guar gum, potassium phosphate, disodium phosphate, carrageenan, carob bean gum." I was apparently fooled by the "authentic" whipped cream from a can that goes on top -- not so authentic after all. And a small size has 14 grams of fat! No wonder I was starting to feel a little bloated after running errands in the afternoon. A couple of those a week and you have seriously increased your fat intake.
Because I try to limit my food to real food, I decided I was going to have to substitute something nutritious for my frappes. I know myself well enough to know I can't just "forget about it," and so I started making myself and the kids a fruit smoothie a couple times a week. They are so tasty, and so healthy, not to mention so much less expensive, it's really not hard to stop the frappe habit and start a smoothie habit.
During the summer we eat fruit salad a couple times a week for dinner, but we rarely finish the bowl. I use the ice cube tray trick and fill ice cube trays with leftover fruit salad, juice and all. Leftover tidbits of fruit in the fruit drawer, not enough for mess with? They go in the ice cube trays, too. I use strawberries, cherries, red grapes, blueberries, peaches -- almost anything seasonal except watermelon which does not freeze well. Bananas make a great natural sweetener so those go in too.
When the fruit is frozen, I pop it out into a ziploc bag and keep adding more each time I have a frozen tray. Unless you have a really juicy salad the fruit pretty much freezes individually.
For each fruit smoothie I use about 1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt, about 1/2 cup frozen fruit and a little bit of milk -- just enough to get it blending. You can use juice instead of milk, but I use milk to keep the acid low. Blend until smooth. If your fruit is on the tart side, add a tablespoon of honey.