In honour of St. Paddy's Day this coming weekend - something green. This enchantingly emerald nectar has taken on an almost spiritual essence for me! It's such a beautiful colour to look at, the flavour is light and smooth, and afterwards I always feel refreshed. Plus, there's a secret ritual around it.
This green juice is naturally gluten free, but I've added it here because the bulk of my diet consists of naturally gluten free foods. While I love me some cheap gluten free bread (like my sprouted lentil breads)I try to get the bulk of my calories from fruit and vegetables. The greens I use in this juice, like kale and Swiss chard are super greens that are packed with important vitamins and nutrients.
So here's the ritual. First, I clear a spot on the counter and put out two small glasses. They're about the equivalent of a double shot glass (they were soy candles at one time. When the candles were done, I melted the wax out, cleaned them, and now they serve as glasses). Then, I pack my regular, cheap-o blender full of greens and other goodies. I run it for a minute or two until the liquid looks almost clear.
Finally, I fill the glasses and call my handsome partner in to the kitchen. We each sprinkle a couple of grains of sea salt onto the frothy tops. We pick up our glasses and make a toast. We toast to something simple, and to accomplishing small things that are manageable, like "to having alkaline blood." This is manageable, because by drinking green juice we are balancing out the acidity in our blood and making it more alkaline. Because I make about 4 cups worth of juice, we are able to repeat this ritual 4-5 times right then and there. We toast "to having a productive day," or "to enjoying a movie tonight," "to having a nice walk in the sunshine" or "to having a good sleep and waking up feeling refreshed," and various other little things we want to make happen. That 5 minutes or so of toasting and drinking a healthy, refreshing and tasty juice is such a boost! Not only is the juice itself a healthy blast, but taking the time to appreciate all the little things that can make a day better feeds our souls a bit too, and motivate us to make good things happen. So go ahead - try some of this and toast to all the good, little things that can happen in your day!
There is nothing new about green juice; everyone seems to have their own version. Mine changes depending on what's in the fridge, but there's a basic structure I follow, mostly green veggies, a piece of fruit for sweetness, and about 2 c water to smooth it out. Also, I don't use a juicer. I've had them and I've returned them. I know they're great, but a) they're much more expensive to buy than a blender and b) I hate that so much of the produce ends up in the garbage (or hopefully the compost at least) once the juice is squeezed out. It's more expensive to juice than blend, as it takes so much more produce to get a shot of juice. I don't mind the slightly pulpy juice my blender produces. The longer I blend, the smoother it gets, especially with added water. In the above photo, the juice is frothy because I had just blended it, if you let it sit for a couple of minutes, the forth settles a bit.
This can actually be fairly filling, so make this in between meals as a shared snack, or as a meal supplement.
Oh, and I call this nectar because that's what it is, literally. Nectar comes from the Greek words necros and tar, meaning death-overcoming. Pretty fitting for a juice that is utterly packed with nutrients and goodness.
2 large leaves of Swiss chard (or 1.5 c of spinach)
2 leaves of kale
4-5 leaves of romaine lettuce
1 apple or pear (if you, like me, have Oral Allergy Syndrome, use 1/4 c applesauce or pearsauce as the processing helps kill the allergen proteins)*
3-4 springs parsley (if you have OAS blanch this for a minute in boiling water)*
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 c cool water
1/4 c sprouts (optional)
salt to taste (optional)
* Remove the thick stems from the kale and chard (the chard stems can be saved for soups or stir fries, but the kale is too tough)
*Pack all the ingredients (minus the salt) into a blender and pour the water over top. This should fill a 6c blender. Blend on high for a good minute or two.
* Sprinkle with a couple of grains of sea salt (or regular salt), if desired.
* Toast your partner, your kids, or yourself, and enjoy your day knowing that you have given yourself a shot of nectar.
What do you like in your green juice?
*OAS Info: See the notes within the recipe for substituting and making this safer for OAS folks.