“Fall-ing” Back into Routines & Avocado Vegan Milkshake Recipe

While I was away in South Korea, I didn’t have frequent access to the internet/computer so I didn’t really have a chance to announce the winner to my book giveaway. Congratulations to my reader Safu79 for winning the book! 🙂

Even though September has arrived and a new school year and season has begun, which is always a busy month for me as I adjust back to regular and new routines, trying to achieve work-life balance again, I plan to slowly catch up with what all my blogger friends have been up to, and will be posting some more summer adventures or discoveries in Vancouver and Korea whenever I have time. I have so many things to tell you about!!

Without further ado, I would love to tell you about this new drink I discovered and fell in love with…

When I returned from Vancouver, my friend Faith and I met up at her favourite Vietnamese restaurant. Every time she has a meal there, she also orders the avocado milkshake. I was curious as to how it tasted since I love avocados so I ordered one to try that night. To my delight, it had a very creamy rich taste and it wasn’t as sweet as I thought. Therefore, I felt it was healthier than most milkshakes.

Before I left for Korea, I recreated my own healthy version using almond milk and pure maple syrup as the natural sweetener. Today I followed the same recipe with only one more addition which was the banana, and it tastes absolutely divine! This milkshake is reserved for days when you feel like having something totally decadent but at the same time you want something healthy too. 🙂

Below you’ll find my Vietnamese-inspired dairy-free naturally sweetened Avocado Milkshake recipe. Enjoy and savour every single sip! 🙂

Happy Fall & September!

XO,

Violet

Avocado Milkshake

 

Makes: 1 milkshake

Preparation Time: 5 minutes

Blending Time: 1-2 minutes

Total Time: about 8 minutes

 

Ingredients:

1 ripe medium avocado

1 ripe banana, chopped

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

1 cup unsweetened cold almond milk (if you prefer a sweeter taste, go with original)

Optional: 1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs for topping

 

Instructions:

1. Put all ingredients (except the cacao nibs) into the blender and mix.

2. Sprinkle with cacao nibs on top, and enjoy drinking with a straw! 🙂

 

Special Note:

I also added 1 tablespoon of Macro Greens. It is a greens product that is abundant in antioxidants, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and probiotic cultures.  It is also gluten-free, raw, organic and vegan. I have it almost every day. I find it boosts my energy level and helps with keeping my immune system stronger.

If you would like to learn more about it, this is the one I use: http://www.iherb.com/macrolife-naturals-macro-greens-nutrient-rich-super-food-10-oz-283-5-g/7385

 

 

A Sweet Green Smoothie Combo!

Spring Mix + Banana + Papaya + Chia seeds = Sweetly Yummy

Spring Mix + Banana + Papaya + Chia seeds = Sweetly Yummy


As mentioned earlier in a post, I have now decided to challenge myself to drink one green smoothie a day!  I have started this for about a week now, and usually drink one for breakfast, but sometimes it’s for snack.  It is very fun to experiment with different combinations of dark leafy greens, vegetables and fruits, and I’m loving most of the green smoothies I made so far!!

Here’s one green smoothie combo that I would love to share with you since it’s simply and naturally so sweet and good! 🙂

 

Makes: 1 smoothie

Preparation Time: 8 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

 

Ingredients:

2 cups  spring mix

1 chopped banana

1 cup chopped papaya

2 tablespoons chia seeds (makes the smoothie filling as it has protein, and provides 4.4 g of protein)

1 cup unsweetened cold almond milk (if you prefer a sweeter taste, go with original)

1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs

6-8 blueberries

 

Instructions:

1. Put all ingredients (except the cacao nibs and blueberries) into the blender and mix.

2. Sprinkle with cacao nibs and blueberries on top, and enjoy!

 

I hope you will enjoy drinking it as much as I do! 🙂

 

Love, Violet

Green Smoothie Made Easy!

Recently,  a few people were asking me how to make a good healthy green smoothie, and I honestly don’t have the “expert” answer, since I just began exploring, making and drinking green smoothies.

My friend Cindy from London, UK, just shared with me this awesome “how to customize your own green smoothie” poster which her friend pinned on Pinterest from another source (Eva Ramsey).  I got very excited upon seeing it and can’t wait to share with all of you right now!!  Here’s a guideline on how to make your own yummy green smoothie, and I know I will substitute the liquid part with almond milk (unsweetened) instead, as I love almond milk a lot!

I want to say thank you to Cindy, her friend Jen & Eva Ramsey for sharing and/or posting this cool green smoothie easy steps poster!

Happy Green Smoothie Making & Drinking! 🙂

Love, Violet 

Green Smoothie Menu

Grateful for Green Smoothie

I'm beginning to love drinking a green smoothie for breakfast!  I like to top it with a sprinkle of raw cacao nibs.  Yum!! :)

I’m beginning to love drinking a green smoothie for breakfast! I like to top it with a sprinkle of raw cacao nibs. Yum!! 🙂

In my search to find satisfying and healthy gluten-free breakfast, I came upon Kimberly Snyder’s book The Beauty Detox Solution- Eat Your Way to Radiant Skin, Renewed Energy and the Body You’ve Always Wanted, and began reading it avidly.  I got inspired by her “Glowing Green Smoothie” (see her blog for recipe: http://kimberlysnyder.net/blog/ggs/).  She claims that drinking a green smoothie or drink daily is the most powerful way to increase our mineral and enzyme consumption, which are critical to our health and beauty.  She says “green-based drinks are the real super foods- not exotic, expensive or hard-to-find fruits or plants from foreign countries.” (Chapter 4: Beauty Minerals and Enzymes)  Furthermore, dark, leafy greens are packed with many nutrients that are good for our bodies, and they’re better than any other food groups.  Basically, having vegetables, especially the greens (e.g. kale, spinach, celery etc.) and fruits will nourish us completely.  According to Health Canada, we should have at least 7-8 servings (if you’re female, and for males: 8-10 servings) of both fruits and vegetables per day (http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/food-guide-aliment/choose-choix/fruit/need-besoin-eng.php), which translates roughly into 2-3 servings of fruits and 7-8 servings of vegetables (I confirmed this information with my naturopathic doctor).   Therefore, having a nutritious and fiber filled green smoothie is such a great way to consume our vegetables and fruits early on in the day.

As I’m going gluten-free, I decided to give the green smoothie a try.  Although I am nowhere near in drinking one per day, I do drink it 2-3 times a week for my breakfast.  Perhaps, in the summer, I will challenge myself to drink Kimberly Snyder’s “Glowing Green Smoothie” every single day and see if it is true about becoming even more energized, more beautiful with radiant skin and leaner.  She claims these are all the positive health effects one will have in drinking it daily.  Keep you all posted on this!

Here’s a recipe that I tried with whatever ingredients I could find in my kitchen, primarily with the intention of making a “green” smoothie, and the result was quite refreshing.  It wasn’t as sweet as I usually prefer, but I was surprised I liked the taste and the energy boost I got from it!  I love how adding the fruits balances the taste of the greens.  So,  I am grateful for discovering the power of green smoothies for my breakfast! 🙂

VIOLET’S  GREEN SMOOTHIE   

Makes: 1 smoothie

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: about 15 minutes

Ingredients:

2 cups of baby spinach

2 stalks of chopped celery (excellent source of calcium, vitamin C, fibre,  potassium, folic acid, fiber, vitamins B1, B2 & B6)

1 chopped nectarine

2 tablespoons chia seeds (makes the smoothie filling as it has protein, and provides 4.4 g of protein)

1 cup unsweetened cold almond milk (if you prefer a sweeter taste, go with original)

1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs

Instructions:

1. Put all ingredients (except the cacao nibs) into the blender and mix.

2. Sprinkle with cacao nibs and enjoy!

I’m discovering there are so many possibilities in making a “green smoothie” that it’s deliciously fun!!  I keep Kimberly Snyder’s mix and match rule in mind when creating a green smoothie:  “Your favourite fruits are your favourite go-to jeans and your leafy greens are your many different cute tops.  The jeans (fruits) are really the support for the fabulous, eye-catching tops (leafy greens) which are the most important part of the outfit.” 😀

What ingredients do you put in your green smoothie? 

Thanks & Love, Violet

*If you want to know the nutritional values and health benefits for the following ingredients, please see these links:

Baby Spinach: http://www.livestrong.com/article/258415-what-is-the-nutritional-value-of-baby-spinach/

Celery: http://www.foods-healing-power.com/celery-health-benefits.html

Nectarine: http://www.livestrong.com/article/408098-what-are-the-health-benefits-of-nectarines/

Cacao Nibs: http://www.livestrong.com/article/462015-benefits-of-cocoa-nibs/

The Best Drink in the World!

Good morning friends!

It’s the middle of the week, and some people may call it  “Slump Day”.  I used to be one of those people who think so.  However, as I slowly moved towards a healthy eating & balanced lifestyle, I no longer feel this way.  One of the reasons is this simple, small and yet very effective habit or action that I think contributed to my increased energy level throughout the day.  It is simply having a glass or cup of warm water with freshly squeezed lemon (about half of a lemon) every day, first thing in the morning, before eating breakfast. It works wonders!

I have been doing this for almost a year now, and let me tell you, I have never felt so alive, as if I can accomplish anything, even challenges thrown my way on a regular basis.  Today is one of those days, that I have like a million tasks that need to get done, but I feel I can do it all, and part of the reason is all due to my favourite and I think, the best drink in the world: Warm Lemon Water! 🙂

If you have not started this yet, I encourage and challenge you to give it a try now!!  Let me know how you feel in a few months! 😉

HAPPY WEDNESDAY!! 😀

Love, Violet

P.S. I found this awesome poster online that explains all the health benefits of drinking lemon water, enjoy!! 🙂

Lemon Water Benefits