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Kale from farmer's market

Kale from farmer’s market

A year ago, after being diagnosed with high cholesterol, my doctor told me to make changes to improve my lifestyle but didn’t specify exactly what those changes should be other than to be more active and to eat healthy. So I did some homework on a healthier lifestyle. A wise friend convinced me to start drinking kale smoothies as part of those changes. I made an amazing discovery. I fell in love with kale! Eating wonderful dark-green kale salads and drinking the smoothies got me hooked. Discovering the superfood capability of kale as an excellent source of Vitamins K, A, and C made it even more irresistible. Dropping another day of meat consumption to go to 5 meat-filled days and 2 meatless helped with changing into a healthier lifestyle, including weight loss. I began eating kale salads (sometimes with spinach, sometimes without) at least once or twice a week.

But over the past year, one of my most common favorite meals or snacks became kale smoothies. Want to know how to make a amazing, healthy smoothie loaded with superfoods (kale, coconut, chia, flaxseed, quinoa, etc.) packing a major nutritional punch?

Without further ado, here is my “IRISH BLUE KALE SMOOTHIE” recipe:

*5 oz kale (organic baby or organic Tuscan aka dinosaur*Dinosaur moniker is used to denote that the Tuscan kale is tougher in texture than baby kale)-best Tuscan kale I can get is @ Trader Joe’s (1/2 bag of TJ’s 10 oz bag) but fresh organic kale from farmer’s market is my top choice
*16 oz coconut milk (unsweetened)
*1/2-1 tbs. extra virgin organic coconut oil (notice the recurring coconut theme in my life!)-usually 1 tbs.
*16 oz unsweetened almond milk (when I want a richer one I use chocolate almond milk)
*1/2-1 tbs. organic chia (almost always 1 tbs.)
*1/2-1 tbs. flaxseed
*1/2 tbs. quinoa
*1 cup frozen blueberries (or frozen triple berry blend including blueberries)
*1 cup mixed frozen fruit (mango and/or pineapple-based go well with blueberries)
*1 scoop of your favorite protein powder-mine is Dutch Chocolate Juice Plus Complete protein powder
*I switched to vegan powder to lower cholesterol. Muscle Milk and others were way too high in cholesterol!
*And finally…the Irish part: 1/2 cup (or 1/4 cup) McCann’s Irish oatmeal (You thought I went all the way to Ireland to find blue kale, didn’t you? No! Good guess though!)-Irishmen have to eat or drink their oats (which help control/lower cholesterol)
*Note: Without the oatmeal, I call this smoothie “blue kale”. (It’s a clever rhyming twist of blue whale!)
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Irish Blue Kale smoothie closeup

Irish Blue Kale smoothie closeup

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Optional: Stevia or honey if desired as sweetener but not needed if you add 2 cups fruit.

Optional: Banana as part of fruit blend.

Optional: Greek yogurt as protein source, if I do this I sometimes leave the protein powder out unless it is a recovery drink from a long run.

*On top sprinkle a runner-sized dash of the secret ingredients: CINNAMON! CILANTRO! GINGER!
Add ice if needed. If you use frozen fruit you might not. Except in summer.

Mash the ingredients with a masher if needed so you have room to blend. I usually put the kale in first, then the liquids, then any non-fruit items, then the fruit on top. Try to make sure the coconut oil isn’t too close to the top of the ingredients or you won’t get the full coconut experience. Add ice if needed. Blend well. Makes about a quart of kale smoothies (2 large cups). Enjoy! BON APPETIT! Want a sip?

Delicious & Nutritious!

Delicious & Nutritious!