Kale Berry Power Smoothie

This power smoothie is packed with nutrients! Kale is high in vitamins A, C, and K as well as manganese, the berries are a wonderful source of antioxidants, and the banana is a good source of fiber, vitamins B6 and C, and manganese. Aloe juice provides anti-inflammatory properties along with the flax oil’s essential fatty acids. I like the Raw Fiber brand because it includes a good dose of good bacteria so it does double duty for digestive health!

Handful of baby kale or Lacinato kale
5 oz frozen mixed berries
1 banana
4 oz aloe juice
4 oz water
2 tbsp flax oil
1 scoop Raw Fiber (or your favorite brand of fiber powder)

Blend until smooth and enjoy!!

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I <3 My CSA!

Well, this summer I finally did it – I joined a CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, and as a member you commit to supporting a local farm for the season, in sickness and in health. This means if they have a plentiful growing season, you reap the benefits in an abundance of fresh, local, beautiful (and organic if you choose an organic farm!) nutrient rich produce. And if the season is more troublesome (flooding, droughts, etc.) then you may not see as much produce that season.

The purpose of joining a CSA is not only to support your local farmers, but also to provide them a guaranteed income to free them from the added stresses of a constant need to sell and let them focus on growing and harvesting the best produce they can. It’s a wonderful thing to get weekly updates with information on the upcoming harvests and the progress of the new crops and to know where your food is coming from.

Each week I pick up my box of produce, which has been jam-packed lately as we are in the peak of the season, and I am astonished by all of the beautiful veggies (and occasional fruit) that I find inside as I unpack it – it covers my kitchen counter! Veggies have taken over the refrigerator and I have had a wonderful time experimenting with veggies I have never tried before. Fennel, asian eggplant, radishes, and kholrabi are now some of my new favorites – I know it’s crazy, but no, I had never tried a radish until this summer! The tomatoes taste like the ones I remember from childhood, and the melons are so fresh and delicious!! I could really go on and on…

So needless to say, I am a convert. I have already signed up for my winter share and I’m looking forward to some new items to try in the winter crops. I highly recommend joining a CSA in your area. It will make you feel connected with your local farmers and inspire you to try new healthy delicious dishes!

If you live in the Twin Cities area and would like to learn more about the CSA I joined, Featherstone Farm, you can visit their website for more info: http://www.featherstonefarm.com/

Or check out this website to find a CSA in your area: http://www.localharvest.org/csa/

Here are a couple pictures from earlier in the season – the last few boxes have been even fuller!

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Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip “Ice Cream”

I’ve tried a few of the dairy-free ice cream alternatives out there, some good, some not so good… Then I figured out this simple little recipe! This one satisfies my sweet tooth every time! 🙂 I use my NutriBullet – I haven’t tried it with a regular blender – you may need more water to get it to blend.

3 small frozen bananas*
5 or 6 frozen strawberries*
4-6 oz. water
approx. 2 oz. dark chocolate chips (I use Sunspire organic 65% cacao chips)
*Use organic fruit if possible – it’s more flavorful!

Blend fruit and water until smooth. You may need to shake container a few times to get all the fruit to the blades to blend. It should be thick and creamy once it’s blended. Next add the chocolate chips (more or less as desired) and blend or pulse for a few seconds to break the chips up.

Makes 3-4 servings.

Enjoy!

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Favorite Morning Smoothie Recipe

I like to start each day with a fresh deliciously sweet and flavorful fruit smoothie. This is my favorite and it is packed full of antioxidants and nutrients including vitamins C & K, manganese and potassium. I’ve made this in a traditional blender, with a stick blender, and in my NutriBullet:

1 med banana
5 oz frozen blueberries
5 oz frozen strawberries

Add about 8 oz of water and blend until smooth. Makes 2 servings.

**Use organic when possible – it has more flavor!

You can also add your favorite protein or fiber powder to this. I usually use Raw Fiber.