Beverages

Banana Pumpkin Smoothies

After all of the cheese and wine I consumed last week in Buenos Aires, I need to get it together. Quite frankly, I’m tired of chicken, have no desire for salads, and can’t eat any more eggs. When I get into an eating rut like this, where I want to eat healthy but can’t stand to eat the same old, same old, I like to replace a meal with a smoothie a few times a week. It’s the middle of October so it feels completely appropriate to break out the pumpkin. This Banana Pumpkin Smoothie is the perfect fall meal that tastes more like a treat and keeps my pants fitting.

Vanilla yogurt, canned pumpkin, orange juice, and frozen banana are the basis of this smoothie which is jazzed up with warm spices and a hint of brown sugar. Right around now, you can find all kinds of recipes for pumpkin pie smoothies but what makes this one unique and different is the addition of the banana and fresh orange juice. I always have slices of frozen banana in my freezer just for smoothies like this but if you don’t, a fresh banana will work fine, you just may want to add extra ice. I never thought to combine orange and pumpkin together but the flavors marry perfectly, giving this drink a light freshness you don’t typically get with fall pumpkin flavors. I’m sold.

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Combine yogurt, pumpkin, ice, orange juice, brown sugar, spices, and banana in a blender, and process until smooth.

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Garnish with dash of ground cinnamon, if desired. Serve immediately.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

Seaside Sunrise

I spent all of last week in Chicago and, despite battling an allergic eye infection that forced me to wear my glasses all week, I used the opportunity to rest, relax, and read. I took long walks along the water and spent the warm (and warm-ish) days at the beach on the lake. I slept in a lot which was different from my last trip to Chicago in May where I was awoken every morning at 6am by a happy dog named Abigail eager to go outside. Watching the sun come up over Lake Michigan is enchanting and I was able to get up early enough once last week to catch it. The way the sun glistens over the water, making the lake look silver and glossy, is a sight that I never tire of. This Seaside Sunrise seems appropriate.

Pineapple, orange-mango, and cranberry juices are mixed with passion fruit rum, a little grenadine (which I left out) and topped with sparkling wine and fruit slices. Any of your favorite rum could be added here but the flavor of the passion fruit combined with the different fruit juices really makes this a perfect little summer cocktail. Whether you are seaside or landlocked, make a batch of this and enjoy our last days of summer.

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Combine pineapple juice, mango-orange juice, passion fruit rum, cranberry juice, and grenadine in a large pitcher.

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Pour into ice-filled glasses, and top with sparkling wine, if desired.

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Garnish, if desired.

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Additions: None

Omissions:

  • Grenadine

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Coastal Living magazine

Summer Sangria

Happy 4th of July! With the recent humidity and summer thunderstorms (not to mention the random hurricane), it officially feels like summer finally. Some of us in the northeast are still dealing with cloudy and/or rainy skies on this Independence Day but since when does the weather keep us from enjoying a cocktail? This Summer Sangria is quick, simple, and packs a punch.

White wine (I used Sauvignon Blanc but Pinot Grigio would be good also) and flavored rum or vodka (I used passion fruit rum) are mixed with a  little simple syrup and fruit.  Raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries made this summer cocktail especially patriotic for the weekend but grapes, peaches, oranges, kiwi or mango would be great additions too. Basically, use any fruit, any white wine, and any flavored spirit to make this quick sangria. I hope everyone has an amazing holiday weekend and enjoys their freedom, rain or shine.

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Combine wine, rum (or vodka), fruit and simple syrup in a large pitcher. Cover and chill at least 2 hours. Add ice; serve immediately.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions:

  • Strawberries and blueberries

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Coastal Living magazine

 

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