I've been in Spain for the past 3 weeks for my day-job. Considering how much fresh produce they grow there, it's actually pretty difficult trying to find veggie options on any menu. Great thing I had 2 Spanish boys travelling on my team coz they spoke the lingo and totally sorted a sista out at every restaurant we went. For the first time in the 3 trips I've made to Spain, I could expand beyond my usual Spanish tapas options of "pimientos da Padron" and "patatas bravas". Don't get me wrong, I love a good Pimientos da Padron. Just not every day, and not at every single meal!
Ended up having a lot of "verduras planchas" - grilled vegetables and sauteed mushrooms. It was artichoke and asparagus season, so hey - I'm not complaining! We also went to the Boqueria market and had a wander one afternoon. SO MUCH FRESH PRODUCE!! So why is everyone so hung up on the Spanish Jamon?
It was great hanging out in Barcelona, and quite the experience (food-wise too) in Teruel, the other town we were in. But after 3 weeks on the road, I was ready to come home to my Tempur-pedic (HA!) and also couldn't wait to make my own meals. I know, I know - "Too much eating out!" - such a first world problem, eh.
Since I really enjoyed those green smoothies I was making up on the Spring cleanse before this trip, I figure I'm gonna do those more often in the mornings.
Today's Welcome-Home! breakfast smoothie's got a good mix of antioxidants, vitamins, protein, good saturated fat, unsaturated fat and anti-inflammatories. This one tasted nice and fresh too! Adding the avocado gives it a creamier texture - so if like me, you don't add any milk in your smoothies (neither dairy nor non-dairy), avocado's a good creamy-texture-booster.
I'll pick one key benefit of each ingredient, so you can chew on that while... er... drinking your smoothie.
WELCOME-HOME! BREAKFAST SMOOTHIE
- Spinach (good source of iron. It's in your red blood cells carrying oxygen through your body. More of this = Energy booster!)
- Cucumber (good source of silica, for joint health. Great for strengthening connective tissue)
- Avocado (good source of healthy fats, great for heart health)
- Basil (has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties)
- Parsley (high in vitamin A, high antioxidant properties)
- Ginger (great anti-inflammatory and good for digestive health)
- Lemon juice from 1 lemon (cleanses the kidneys, digestive system and a great blood purifier)
- Hemp seeds (high in protein - containing all 9 essential amino acids)
- Water - as much as you need to get your desired smoothie consistency
Chuck everything in and blend, adding as much water as you like till it gets to your desired consistency.
*I have a regular Kitchenaid blender, no fancy slow-juicer nor Vitamix. I drink everything, even the pulp. Which means this smoothie also has great fibre and helps "keep things moving"! ;p
If you use a juicer then you don't have any of the fibre benefits - maybe take the leftover pulp, deydrate it and make veggie chips.