COOK'S CORNER: Smoothies make cool treats

Published 3:46 am Wednesday, July 25, 2007

By By Lisa Tindell – news writer
Contrary to what my son thinks, a smoothie is not the same as a milkshake. They are very similar; however, smoothies don't usually contain ice cream. Most do contain some sort of milk product such as yogurt or maybe even whole milk.
To set the record straight and to give folks some ideas on what a smoothie really is, I've decided to share some recipes for the cool treat.
From everything that I have seen, smoothies usually contain fresh fruit of some sort, sweetener and milk or yogurt. Bananas are the fruit of choice apparently. From what I've experienced, the banana tends to help thicken any type of smoothie you plan to create. The thickness lends more to the idea that a smoothie and a milkshake are much the same. If you like bananas then you've hit the jackpot. Otherwise, you'll be happy to find that several other kinds of fruit also make delicious treats. I'm sure that you will be able to find something you like from among the recipes I've chosen for this week.
Berry Delicious Smoothie
2 cups frozen mixed berries
1 cup strawberry flavored yogurt
1 banana, sliced
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon white sugar (optional)
In the container of a blender, combine the mixed berries, strawberry yogurt, banana, milk and sugar. Cover, and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve.
If you're looking for something a little out of the ordinary, this next recipe should fit the bill. If you do choose to make this type of smoothie, just remember that mangos are ripe when you feel little resistance when pressing with your fingers. Ripe mangos are just a tiny bit soft, kind of like a tomato. Too soft mangos are going bad and should be avoided in this type of recipe.
Mango Smoothie
1 mango – peeled, seeded, and cut into chunks
1 banana, peeled and chopped
1 cup orange juice
1 cup vanilla nonfat yogurt
Place mango, banana, orange juice, and yogurt in a blender. Blend until smooth. Serve.
I'm sure by now that you've discovered the preparation method for a smoothie is very easy. Simply throw all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth, hence the term smoothie.
For another change in smoothie tastes, this next recipe doesn't require a banana in the recipe and couldn't be simpler. If you like strawberries, you will probably like this drink.
California Smoothie
7 large strawberries
1 (8 ounce) container lemon yogurt
1/3 cup orange juice
Place strawberries in a plastic container and freeze for about an hour. In a blender, combine frozen strawberries, yogurt and orange juice. Blend until smooth. Pour into a tall glass and serve.
The last recipe I'll share this week is certainly different from any drink you'll find on a menu board of your favorite smoothie shop. This one calls for cantaloupe. Since I'm not a fan of the melon, the recipe doesn't really appeal to me. However, I realize that I am in the minority of people who don't care for this melon. For all of you cantaloupe lovers out there, this one is for you.
Cantaloupe Smoothie
1/2 cantaloupe – peeled, seeded and cubed
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 cup raspberries
3 tablespoons white sugar
In a blender, combine cantaloupe chunks, yogurt, raspberries and sugar. Blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve.
I hope that you enjoy putting some of these recipes to work for your family. Smoothies require little effort and are a somewhat healthy treat. Find something healthy and delicious for the family is sometimes a difficult task.
With the beginning of school just a couple of weeks away, I plan to share recipes for back-to-school lunch boxes and after-school treats. I know that finding the right after-school snack is difficult for many people who are trying to limit sugary treats for children in the family.
If you have any ideas you'd like to share on those two topics, be sure to drop me a line with your recipes and other tid-bits of information. You can contact me by calling 867-4876 or by email at
Until next week, Happy Cooking!

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