Pre-Party Smoothie

We had two birthday parties to go to yesterday. Which means there would be a lot of unwholesome eating in one day. I try not to be too strict with my kids with that stuff. I don’t want them to form a negative relationship with food because “mom never let us eat “junk””. At home I feed my family what I believe to be the highest quality foods and nutrient dense meals, and when we are out, while I still try and make sure they don’t spend the whole time gorging themselves with sweets, I let them eat what is offered.

I do put a limit on things such as “You either get a piece of cake OR a cupcake. You get the juice box OR the ice cream”. They are still just children and need a little bit of guidance, no? For the most part they are on board with this. And if I do catch my 6 year old daughter sneaking an extra piece of cake, or juice box or cookie (or anything else, because this happens, often) I try not to make her feel bad about it. I use this as an opportunity to check in with her and ask her how it makes her body feel, or if it makes her happy to eat sweets, or any other question that comes up that will allow me to have her be in touch with a deeper part of herself versus just the immediate palate satisfaction. While eating just for pleasure is fine sometimes, when it happens too often, it is not just for pleasure anymore. If it were up to my daughter, she would have it all, 3 times. My son can easily have his piece of cake and go right back to playing. The baby, well since he is only 15 months, has not really been exposed to sugar yet. Holding off as long as I can on this one. With two older siblings its just a matter of time.

So while I want my kids to be exposed to other peoples way of eating so they can make their opinions about food, their health is still very important to me. That is why I make them a Pre-Party Smoothie before we leave the house. The Pre-Party Smoothie allows me to make sure they get a good dose of healthy fats, fiber and protein in order for their little bodies to function properly not only to be able to play and have fun with their friends, but also so they can handle what ever foods they might eat that their bodies are not used to digesting often. And, if done right, they might not even be that hungry to have pizza AND cake AND ice cream. *wishful thinking* 

While I get my kids to drink their smoothies and juices regularly, they still sometimes put up a fuss. The Party Smoothie is easy because they know we are not leaving until their cup is empty. I make sure to remind them that this smoothie will give them lots of energy so they can play for along time.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 TBS hemp seeds
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 2 cups fresh greens (this time it was spinach)
  • Optional: a handful of sprouts because I had some handy.

Steps:

  • Put everything in a blender and blend until smooth
  • this made enough for 3 small servings

For some of my thoughts on eating at parties, you can check out my post from a few months ago:

https://anaboreal.wordpress.com/2014/08/26/tips-to-avoid-over-eating-at-parties/

Dill Pesto

The refreshing dill combined with the smooth rich avocado balanced with the crunch of the cashews makes for a nice alternative to the usual pesto. I eat pesto frequently as it is a perfect topping for raw breads, raw crackers, zucchini pasta, and much much more. So switching it up is a nice way to keep things interesting in my plate without making huge changes.

This pesto came about because of all the ingredients I had in my fridge. If you don’t have parsley, try another herb. If you don’t have spinach use another leafy green. The main ingredients that I wouldn’t change here are the dill and the avocado.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chopped dill
  • 1 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 cup chopped spinach
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 TBS lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large clove of garlic

Steps:

  • put everything in a food processor and blend until desired consistency
  • will keep in the fridge for a few days, not sure how long though as we always eat it quickly 🙂

Basil Pesto Sauce

The basil has been so lush and abundant at the farmers market that I just cannot help and buy a few bundles every time I smell it!! For that reason, I have been making a lot of pesto this summer. I love pesto for how versatile it is: on pizza, with raw crackers, as a dip with veggies, as a spread on a sandwich, with zucchini pasta, you get the drift 😉 

This is my version of pesto. I omit the pine nuts, mainly because those are not something I ever have on hand. When creating recipes, I try to create things with ingredients that are frequently in my kitchen. It keeps things simple and convenient. 

 

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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups tightly packed basil
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 TBS lemon juice
  • 1 TBS nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Steps:

  • put everything in the food processor and blend until desired consistency. I left it a little chunky this time because I felt like 🙂 Sometimes I like it really smooth and will process it longer.