Monday, November 24, 2008

(Originally posted on at   (I was a bit "L" happy when I started this!)

The past few weekends I've sort of started a tradition of making smoothies on Sunday morning.
It started one Sunday when I woke up with a sore throat, happened to come across a fruit smoothie recipe on-line and decided my throat could use a nice, frothy treat - especially one that would provide a nice dose of vitamin C. Those first couple of weeks I meticulously measured ingredients, following someone else's recipe, but I think I've evolved. Let's face it, I'm not making any outrageously unique smoothie combinations, just following my basic formula - Two or three fruits, splash of something, dollop of yogurt, sweetener if necessary and a whir of the blender and you've got breakfast or a healthy snack. I've been through several berry drinks, chocolate-peanut butter and even a pumpkin smoothie.

This week I had cranberries on my mind - not only because Thanksgiving was fast approaching, but I have 6 bags of Ocean Spray beauties in my fridge and freezer, courtesy of Big Y's sale last week ($1 EACH!!!). I should have bought more. I was concerned about the tartness of these ruby berries until I glanced into my arsenal of frozen foods and found my secret ingredient to my new favorite Sunday morning smoothie (well, this week anyway...)

For 1 serving, you will need:
1 half banana
1/2 cup chopped frozen mango (aka secret ingredient)
1/2 cup cranberries
1/2 cup orange juice
1 tbsp. honey (optional, but you'll probably want it)

Mango and Honey missed the cast photo. They send their deepest regrets and hope their fans will understand.
Oh, and those fresh bananas? They were stand-ins. I prefer to use ...

Ah! Here's Mango! Chop the banana into big chunks and toss into the blender with the frozen mango chunks.

Now, fresh cranberries MUST be rinsed and picked over...chances are you'll find some that need to be de-stemmed, like this little booger....
Sorry... please forget I said "booger" while referring to something that's going to be in breakfast in about 30 seconds.
OK, dump the rinsed, picked over, de-stemmed, boogerless cranberries into the blender, to which you had previously added the chopped (preferably frozen) banana and frozen chunks of mango.

And I'm using the same measuring cup to measure out 1/2 cup of orange juice. Of course, I rinsed it and ran it through the dishwasher first so as not to contaminate the orange juice with cranberry molecules.... Oh wait, they're going to be forever united in just a few moments.  Anyway, just so you know, OF COURSE we don't rinse things unless absolutely necessary! And sometimes not even then....
OK, three guesses as to what we do with the orange juice...

...CORRECT! Then add a couple dollops of yogurt - I'm guessing about 1/2 cup.

Hello Honey! Nice of you to join us!

Now, honey you can use or not use - it's up to you. Unlike a typical orange-cranberry concoction, secret ingredient mango adds lots of rich sweetness, possibly enough to offset the tart cranberries. Maybe. But I doubt it.  If you're not sure, blend up the fruit and yogurt, taste and decide then if you need or want the extra sweetness, which of course can be honey, sugar, Splenda...whatever you like to use.

Here they are, ready to ride........................ I really think mango brings out the best in cranberries.  Look at those colors!


And here's what it looks like when it's just abut done.  Make sure you blend it well to pulverize those cranberry seeds.

Pour into a glass and enjoy!

Then go tackle THIS.....

(I'm think gonna need another smoothie....)

:-) Christine

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