I'm still on a smoothie kick (pregnant, anyone?) so here's another cool treat for the upcoming warmer days. Again, these smoothies give you a serving of green, leafy vegetables, a serving of fruit and a serving of dairy to help you have a balanced diet each day. They're even sweetened with honey, a great alternative to refined sugars that works perfectly here. Don't turn your nose up before turning up the glass and giving it a try! Spinach, when blended with fruit, is undetectable to the palate and you will never be able to tell it's in there, except for the color. Your kids won't know either, so if they question the color, just tell them it's a natural food coloring, kind of similar to what they died their Easter eggs with.
Pineapple Banana Cooler
5 pieces chopped pineapple
1 banana, cut in chunks for easier blending
1 generous handful raw baby spinach
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup milk
coconut for garnishing
Blend the ingredients (except coconut) until smooth. You may want to make this ahead and chill for an extra-cool drink, or just pop it in the freezer after pouring into serving glasses for about 5-10 minutes. Garnish with coconut and serve.
When I made this cooler, I did not add coconut until garnishing my glass. However, it may be great to add a teaspoon or two when blending to kick up the flavor a tad. The crunch of the coconut was great as a garnish and the flavor it added was just right with the fresh pineapple flavor.
Also, this recipe works for either fresh pineapple or canned pineapple, however fresh is always best to me. Since pineapple is on sale at Wal-Mart, Winn Dixie and Save Rite this week, you'll be able to find a great deal on a quality, fresh ingredient instead of using the canned product! Save Rite is the lowest price by two pennies, but remember a penny saved is a penny made!