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Category: Beverages

Toasted Coconut Smoothie

Toasted Coconut Smoothie

Rich, thick and full of coconut flavor – this is one luscious way to sip an afternoon away!

Just imagine if you scooped the custard out of a coconut cream pie then blended it into a drink. This might be what it would taste like!

After recently making coconut waffles I just happened to have extra toasted coconut on hand. So I thought it might be fun to whip up a smoothie with this tropical flavor.

This drink deeply resembles a milkshake, but made without using any ice cream. Instead, very ripe, frozen bananas provide the creaminess of ice cream and the chill that ice normally provides. Don’t toss out overly ripe bananas – instead peel them and drop them into a freezer bag. They’re perfect for smoothies and for baking. The other key ingredients in this beverage are coconut milk and crème of coconut – typically on hand for a piña colada!

And with the popularity of non-dairy “milk” products, coconut milk is easy to find and can be kept on the shelf in your pantry.

It’s a simple drink to make, with a small number of ingredients but the result is oh, so delicious!

Toasted Coconut Smoothie

½ cup grated coconut, plus extra for garnish

2 cups coconut milk

½ cup crème of coconut

5 frozen bananas

Spread the grated coconut onto a rimmed sheet pan. Place the coconut in a 400-degree oven and bake for about 12 minutes, or until the coconut is toasted and golden in color. Stir every 4 minutes so the coconut is evenly toasted.

Pour the coconut milk and the crème of coconut into a blender then add the toasted coconut.

Add the frozen bananas and process, starting on low for about 10 to 20 seconds.

Raise the speed to high and process until the bananas are blended into the drink, about 30 to 45 seconds.

Pour the coconut smoothie into tall glasses and sprinkle with extra toasted coconut.

Makes four 8-ounce drinks.

Toasted Coconut Smoothie, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

May 13, 2019
: Makes four 8-ounces servings.

Just imagine if you scooped out the custard of a coconut cream pie and blended it into a drink. This might be what it would taste like!

By:

Ingredients
  • ½ cup grated coconut, plus extra for garnish
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • ½ cup crème of coconut
  • 5 frozen bananas
Directions
  • Step 1 Spread the grated coconut onto a rimmed sheet pan. Place the coconut in a 400-degree oven and bake for about 12 minutes, or until the coconut is toasted and golden in color. Stir every 4 minutes so the coconut is evenly toasted.
  • Step 2 Pour the coconut milk and the crème of coconut into a blender then add the toasted coconut.
  • Step 3 Add the frozen bananas and process, starting on low for about 10 to 20 seconds. Raise the speed to high and process until the bananas are blended into the drink, about 30 to 45 seconds.
  • Step 4 Pour the coconut smoothie into tall glasses and sprinkle with extra toasted coconut.
Southern Ginger Mint Margaritas

Southern Ginger Mint Margaritas

Most food historians agree that the margarita most likely originated South of the Border, but this cocktail long ago became a Texas tradition. And with Cinco de Mayo on the calendar this weekend there’s sure to be a pitcher or two around town. So if you’re planning on mixing a batch, make it a good batch!

This is a twist on a recipe from Cointreau so you know it’s going to be good! Any decent margarita must have a quality tequila and Herradura Añejo is a favorite. It’s aged for 25 months in American White Oak barrels leaving it a gorgeous amber color with that oak flavor seeping from the barrels into the tequila along with tones of agave and fruit. And you can’t have a great margarita without Cointreau – and if you want to really turn up the volume – use Cointreau Noir. It’s a luscious blend of that beautiful orange liqueur and cognac. An amazing spirit for sipping or mixing!

Muddled into these fabulous elixirs are the spicy, peppery flavors of ginger and refreshing mint leaves.

Drizzle in the right amount of simple syrup to soften the edges. (If we’re calling it Southern we’ve got to have a little simple syrup!) And of course a big dose of freshly squeezed lime juice.

Ginger is available in many Farmer’s Markets and food markets that carry a wide range of produce. In a pinch you can use crystallized ginger, found in the spice aisle. The quickest and easiest way to clean ginger is with a spoon. Simply scrape the peel away and it’s ready to chop for your cocktail. And any leftover ginger can be frozen.

For muddling, invest in a sturdy muddler, one that is tall enough to reach into a shaker. In order to release the oils and essence from any herbs or spices it’s important to crush them and a muddler handles this task efficiently. This is key to getting their maximum flavor into your drinks.

Combine all these beautiful ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake until the margaritas are well chilled. Then pour them up over a glass filled with more ice to keep those drinks nice and cold.

Slide a thin slice of lime into the glass and maybe top with a little more mint! Relaxation is served!

Southern Ginger Mint Margaritas

2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger

10 fresh mint leaves

3 tablespoons simple syrup

¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice, about 2 limes

½ cup good tequila

¼ cup Cointreau or Cointreau Noir

1 cup ice for shaking plus more for serving

Thinly sliced limes and mint leaves for garnish

Toss the ginger and the mint into the bottom of a tall shaker and muddle them together until the leaves and ginger are crushed.

Add the simple syrup and the lime juice.

Pour in the tequila and the Cointreau. Top with the 1 cup of  ice.

Put the lid tightly on the shaker and mix, shaking vigorously until the margaritas are very cold.

Slide a thin slice of lime along the side of a glass filled with ice. Pour the margaritas through the strainer of the shaker into the glasses and top with a mint leaf if desired.

Makes 2 cocktails.

To make Simple Syrup:

2 cups water

3 cups sugar

Pour the water into a small saucepan, stir in the sugar. Warm over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar has completely dissolved. Keep refrigerated.

Southern Ginger Mint Margaritas, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

May 3, 2019
: Makes 2 cocktails.

Muddled into two amazing spirits – Cointreau and tequila - are the spicy, peppery flavors of ginger and refreshing mint leaves. Drizzle in just the right amount of simple syrup to soften the edges. And of course a big dose of freshly squeezed lime juice.

By:

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
  • 10 fresh mint leaves
  • 3 tablespoons simple syrup
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice, about 2 limes
  • ½ cup good tequila
  • ¼ cup Cointreau or Cointreau Noir
  • 1 cup ice for shaking plus more for serving
  • Thinly sliced limes and mint leaves for garnish
  • For the simple syrup:
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 cups sugar
Directions
  • Step 1 Toss the ginger and the mint into the bottom of a tall shaker and muddle them together until the leaves and ginger are crushed.
  • Step 2 Add the simple syrup and the lime juice.
  • Step 3 Pour in the tequila and the Cointreau. Top with 1 cup of ice.
  • Step 4 Put the lid tightly on the shaker and mix, shaking vigorously until the margaritas are very cold.
  • Step 5 Slide a thin slice of lime along the side of a glass filled with ice. Pour the margaritas through the strainer of the shaker into the glasses and top with a mint leaf if desired.
  • Step 6 To make simple syrup:
  • Step 7 Pour the water into a small saucepan, stir in the sugar. Warm over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar has completely dissolved. Keep refrigerated.
Watermelon Lemonade

Watermelon Lemonade

Start with the bright tang of lemon, gently sweeten it with golden honey then toss in fresh mint and cold, crisp watermelon. A quick blend and you’ve got the sweet flavors of spring in a glass!

It’s cloudy and rainy in Texas so something light and fresh seemed to be in order. I was strolling through one of my favorite local Farmer’s Markets in search of fresh mint for my sweet tea when I spotted watermelon. Gorgeous, pink chunks of fresh melon that signal that warmer sunny days are ahead.

Back in my kitchen I started flipping through recipes and stumbled across a lemonade recipe, courtesy of Vitamix. It combined those bright yellow lemons with this wonderful melon. So a tweak or two and I included the ingredients I had on hand. Then with a quick blend this combination turned into a Farmer’s Market treat!

This drink takes only minutes to make and you can chill any lemonade that you have leftover. With only four key components in this watermelon lemonade you want really fresh and high quality. Shopping at a market where they actually check the produce is always helpful. For those of you in the North Texas area, the North Richland Hills Farmer’s Market falls into this category and never disappoints! And as for the honey, check out Lieber’s. It’s another great Texas brand and some of the best honey you’ll find.

Watermelon lemonade is so delightfully pink and wonderful it might make you blush!

Watermelon Lemonade

½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, about 3 lemons

1/3 cup good honey, such as Lieber’s

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

6 cups seedless watermelon, cut into cubes

2 cups ice

Pour the lemon juice into the canister of a blender. Add the honey and the fresh mint.

Top with the watermelon and process on low for about 30 seconds to blend together.

Add the ice cubes and process, starting on low then a raising to high speed for about 30 seconds or until the ice is blended into the lemonade.

Serve straight up or over ice. Garnish with a slice of lemon and a small sprig of mint!

Makes 4 large glasses of lemonade.

Watermelon Lemonade, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

April 24, 2019
: Makes 4 large glasses of lemonade.

Start with the bright tang of lemon, gently sweeten it with golden honey then toss in fresh mint and cold, crisp watermelon. A quick blend and you’ve got a kissed with the freshness of spring taste in a glass!

By:

Ingredients
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, about 3 lemons
  • 1/3 cup good honey, such as Lieber’s
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 6 cups seedless watermelon, cut into cubes
  • 2 cups ice
Directions
  • Step 1 Pour the lemon juice into the canister of a blender. Add the honey and the fresh mint.
  • Step 2 Top with the watermelon and process on low for about 30 seconds to blend together.
  • Step 3 Add the ice cubes and process, starting on low then a raising to high speed for about 30 seconds or until the ice is blended into the lemonade.
  • Step 4 Serve straight up or over ice. Garnish with a lemon slice and a small sprig of mint!
Strawberry and Rosé Wine Spritzer

Strawberry and Rosé Wine Spritzer

Subtle hints of strawberry infused into a beautiful dry rosé with a bright splash of bittersweet orange and fresh lemon woven throughout! It’s light, it’s crisp and it’s refreshing!

Though the weather hasn’t really felt like it the calendar says it is in fact springtime. This gorgeous cocktail brings the newness of the season to your day.

Wine spritzers make for delightful cocktails. They can be as simple as a blend of wine and sparkling water or soda. Or as with this spritzer, fresh fruit can be layered into a great rosé wine.

This spritzer is made with sliced strawberries tossed into a rosé wine and allowed to macerate, releasing their sweet nectar.

Than a generous pour of Aperol – a classic Italian aperitif with a deep orange, slightly bitter woodsy tone – is added along with a bit of tart from lemon. Finish with just a spoonful or two of simple syrup to round out the flavors and soften the edges and you’ve got one deliciously fun cocktail.

Serve over ice or for a bit of charm freeze some of those berries and drop them in to keep the chill on the drink!

Welcome to April!

Strawberry and Rosé Wine Spritzer

1 pint fresh strawberries, about ¾ pound

1 bottle good rosé wine, such as Dark Horse Rosé

1 cup sparkling mineral water

½ cup Aperol

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 tablespoons simple syrup

Whole, fresh strawberries for garnish and ice or frozen strawberries for serving

Rinse, hull and slice the strawberries. You should have about 2 cups of sliced berries.

Place the sliced strawberries in a large pitcher and pour the rosé wine over them. Cover and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.

When you’re ready to serve scoop the sliced strawberries from the wine. Add the mineral water along with the Aperol, the lemon juice and the simple syrup. Stir to blend together.

Toss ice or some frozen strawberries into a tall glass and add the spritzer.

Garnish with a fresh whole strawberry perched on the rim!

Makes 6 servings.

Strawberry and Rosé Wine Spritzer, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

April 1, 2019
: Makes 6 cocktails.

Subtle hints of strawberry infused into a beautiful dry rosé with a bright splash of bittersweet orange and fresh lemon woven throughout! It’s light, it’s crisp and it’s refreshing!

By:

Ingredients
  • 1 pint fresh strawberries, about ¾ pound
  • 1 bottle good rosé wine, such as Dark Horse Rosé
  • 1 cup sparkling mineral water
  • ½ cup Aperol
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons simple syrup
  • Whole, fresh strawberries for garnish and ice or frozen strawberries for serving
Directions
  • Step 1 Rinse, hull and slice the strawberries. You should have about 2 cups of sliced berries.
  • Step 2 Place the sliced strawberries in a large pitcher and pour the rosé wine over them. Cover and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.
  • Step 3 When you’re ready to serve scoop the sliced strawberries from the wine.
  • Step 4 Add the mineral water along with the Aperol, the lemon juice and the simple syrup. Stir to blend together.
  • Step 5 Toss ice or some frozen strawberries into a tall glass and add the spritzer.
  • Step 6 Garnish with a fresh whole strawberry perched on the rim.

 

 

Lemon Blueberry Smoothie with Fresh Rosemary

Lemon Blueberry Smoothie with Fresh Rosemary

The combination of lemons and blueberries offers something quite wonderful. Throw in a hint of fresh rosemary with a drizzle of golden honey and you’ve got one uniquely delicious and frosty beverage!

Lemons and blueberries seem perfect for a little refresh on this first weekend of spring.

Meyer lemons are still in season and bring a milder, slightly sweet lemon tang. Believed to be a cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange they are not as tart as their bright yellow counterpart. If you can’t find Meyer lemons or you like that intense lemon flavor you can certainly use the more commonly found variety, just add a touch more honey if needed to satisfy your taste buds.

And the blueberries have been so wonderful this year – even as early as late January they were plump and sweet. I loaded up and luckily had a batch sitting in the freezer just waiting to add the right chill to this smoothie. Substituting frozen fruit for some of the ice cubes gives this or any frozen drink a more intense flavor.

Then there’s the herbal twist – rosemary. A member of the mint family, rosemary is always on my patio. This evergreen scented herb is a well-known ingredient in savory dishes but it can also add a beautiful floral note to recipes with fruit. If your palate is sensitive, start with half the amount. Rosemary is a lot like lavender, it can quickly take over.

Beautiful flavors ranging from subtly sweet to lightly tangy with notes of honey and rosemary to highlight the lemon and blueberries. A little zesting, a bit of juicing, and a quick chop or two. Pull up a chair, have a sip and welcome the new season!

Lemon Blueberry Smoothie with Fresh Rosemary

¼ cup honey, or enough to suit your taste

2 teaspoons lemon zest, about 2 large lemons

½ cup Meyer lemon juice, about 2 to 3 large lemons*

1/2 to 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

3 cups frozen blueberries

¾ cup sparkling lemonade, such as Lorina French Soda

1 cup of ice

*Note: If Meyer lemons aren’t available, you can use any lemons in the market.

Pour the honey into a blender. Add the lemon zest along with the lemon juice.

Toss in 1/2 teaspoon of the chopped rosemary.

Toss in the frozen blueberries and pour in the sparkling lemonade.

Add the ice.

Process on low speed for about 20 to 30 seconds, then on high for about 1 to 2 minutes or until the drink is smooth and well blended. If you’re using a Vitamix, use the smoothie setting. You can add more lemonade if you like a smoothie that’s not as thick. Give it a taste and add more honey and rosemary if needed.

Makes 2 large drinks.

Lemon Blueberry Smoothie with Fresh Rosemary, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

March 22, 2019
: Makes 2 large drinks.

The blend of lemons and blueberries offers something quite wonderful. Throw in a hint of fresh rosemary with a drizzle of honey and you’ve got one uniquely delicious and frosty beverage!

By:

Ingredients
  • ¼ cup honey, or enough to suit your taste
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest, about 2 large lemons
  • ½ cup Meyer lemon juice, about 2 to 3 large lemons*
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 3 cups frozen blueberries
  • ¾ cup sparkling lemonade, such as Lorina
  • 1 cup of ice
  • *Note: If Meyer lemons aren’t available, you can use any lemons in the market.
Directions
  • Step 1 Pour the honey into a blender.
  • Step 2 Add the lemon zest along with the lemon juice and the chopped rosemary.
  • Step 3 Toss in the frozen blueberries and pour in the sparkling lemonade .
  • Step 4 Add the ice.
  • Step 5 Process on low speed for about 20 to 30 seconds, then on high for about 1 to 2 minutes or until the drink is smooth and well blended. If you’re using a Vitamix, use the smoothie setting. You can add more lemonade if you like a smoothie that’s not as thick. Give it a taste and add more honey and rosemary if needed.
  • Step 6
Irish Whiskey Affogato

Irish Whiskey Affogato

Looking for something a wee bit decadent to celebrate St. Patty’s Day? Look no further than this luscious cocktail – boasting both Irish whiskey and Irish cream! Throw in a splash of dark roast coffee, a scoop of ice cream and you’re sure to please even the fussiest leprechaun!

I’m not really sure if I would classify this as a cocktail or dessert but it really doesn’t matter because it checks a lot of boxes!  This Italian inspired dessert is traditionally served with a simple scoop of ice cream swimming in espresso of dark roast coffee.

Glorious on its own but this version is so good it will make you want to pinch someone!

Start with a great Irish whiskey. I’ve been reading articles on Irish whiskeys and one jumped out – Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey. This beautiful, smooth whiskey received rave reviews and it doesn’t’ disappoint. It’s partially aged in rum casks creating a smooth slightly earthy, fruity profile.

And you can’t leave out Bailey’s Irish Cream – a beautiful blend of Irish whiskey and cream – it’s a classic liqueur. Just adding it to a cup of coffee makes something quite special. So imagine it swirled with Irish whiskey plus a decadent coffee ice cream slowly melting in a cup of rich, dark roast coffee.

Top with fluffy whipped cream, chopped bittersweet chocolate and indulgence is a sip away! There might not be a better way to say cheers to St. Patrick’s Day!

Irish Whiskey Affogato

3 tablespoons good Irish whiskey, such as Teeling Small Batch

2 tablespoons Bailey’s Irish Cream

1 large scoop coffee ice cream

6 tablespoons dark roast coffee, cooled slightly

Whipped cream and chopped bittersweet chocolate for garnish

Pour the Irish whiskey and the Irish cream into a tall glass or mug.

Add the scoop of ice cream, taking care not to splash the spirits out of the glass!

Pour the coffee over the ice cream. Top with a dollop or two of whipped cream and a sprinkling of the chopped chocolate.

If you prefer a colder drink, chill the coffee before adding it to your cocktail. This makes 1 large drink. For 2 smaller drinks you can split the portions of Irish whiskey, Irish cream and coffee into two smaller glasses and add a scoop of ice cream to each.

Irish Whiskey Affogato, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

March 15, 2019
: Makes 1 large drink.

A luscious cocktail – boasting both Irish whiskey and Irish cream! Throw in a splash of dark roast coffee, a scoop of coffee ice cream and it’s sure to please!

By:

Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons good Irish whiskey, such as Teeling Small Batch
  • 2 tablespoons Bailey’s Irish Cream
  • 1 large scoop coffee ice cream
  • 6 tablespoons dark roast coffee, cooled slightly
  • Whipped cream and chopped bittersweet chocolate for garnish
Directions
  • Step 1 Pour the Irish whiskey and the Irish cream into a tall glass or mug.
  • Step 2 Add the scoop of ice cream, taking care not to splash it in the spirits!
  • Step 3 Pour the coffee over the ice cream.
  • Step 4 Top with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkling of the chopped chocolate.
  • Step 5 If you prefer a cold drink, chill the coffee before adding it to your cocktail.
  • Step 6 For 2 smaller drinks you can split the portions of Irish whiskey, Irish cream and coffee into two smaller glasses and add a scoop of ice cream to each.
Hot Buttered Rum

Hot Buttered Rum

Spring is a little less than three weeks away but you couldn’t tell it if you stepped outside. The temperature has dropped and we’re looking at some chilly weather for the next few days. So dust off this centuries old recipe, with a bit of an update. Hot buttered rum – a classic hot cocktail – one that boasts beautiful spices whipped in butter and vanilla ice cream then swirled into dark rum. Warming up tastes really good!

With yet another blast of cold air it seemed like the perfect weekend for a hot cocktail. One that I could whip up and sip on in front of the fire. I ran across so many versions of hot buttered rum before settling on this one from my favorite cocktail and beverage site, Liquor.com. With a bit of tweaking – the original recipe made a huge batch of buttered rum batter – hot buttered rums were within reach.

The buttered rum batter is what caught my eye. Butter blended with three heavenly spices – ground cinnamon, ground cloves and freshly grated nutmeg. Sweetened with both granulated and dark brown sugar then melded into softened vanilla ice cream – or in my case, creamy gelato!

Stir a small scoop or two of this decadent batter into dark rum….

…add a splash of boiling water to warm things up and get ready to indulge!

You can blend up a batch of this amazing buttered rum batter and just keep it in the freezer. Then it’s ready anytime you want to stir up a hot buttered rum for your friends or maybe just one for you.

So put the kettle on and get ready for a wonderful warm up – It might just make you want winter to stay a little longer!

Hot Buttered Rum

For the buttered rum batter:

1 stick unsalted butter, ½ cup, at room temperature

½ cup plus 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar

½ cup granulated sugar

¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¾ teaspoon ground cloves

¾ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1 cup vanilla ice cream or gelato, softened

In a large bowl mix together the softened butter along with both sugars, the cinnamon, cloves and the nutmeg.

Stir until the sugars, butter and spices are creamed together.

Add the softened ice cream and stir until fairly smooth. At this point you can store the batter in a freezer-safe container and freeze until you’re ready to mix up your drinks.

Makes about 2-1/2 cups buttered batter.

For each hot buttered rum:

2 ounces dark rum

1 to 1-1/2 tablespoons buttered rum batter, to suit your taste preference

4 ounces boiling water

Cinnamon stick for serving, optional

Pour the rum into a 7 to 8-ounce mug.

Add the buttered rum batter.

Top with the boiling water.Stir to blend. Serve hot – and for fun drop in a cinnamon stick for swirling!

Makes 1 drink.

Hot Buttered Rum, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

March 1, 2019
: About 2-1/2 cups buttered rum batter; one hot buttered rum drink.

Dust off this centuries old recipe for a classic hot cocktail with a bit of an update – one that boasts beautiful spices whipped in butter and vanilla ice cream then swirled into dark rum.

By:

Ingredients
  • For each drink you'll need 1 to 1-1/2 tablespoons of the buttered rum batter.
  • For the buttered rum batter:
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, ½ cup, at room temperature
  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¾ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 cup vanilla ice cream or gelato, softened
  • For each hot buttered rum:
  • 2 ounces dark rum
  • 1 to 1-1/2 tablespoons buttered rum batter, to suit your taste preference
  • 4 ounces boiling water
  • Cinnamon stick for serving, optional
Directions
  • Step 1 For the buttered rum batter:
  • Step 2 In a large bowl mix together the softened butter along with both sugars, the cinnamon, cloves and the nutmeg.
  • Step 3 Add the softened ice cream and stir until fairly smooth. At this point you can store the batter in a freezer-safe container and freeze until you’re ready to mix up your drinks.
  • Step 4 For the hot buttered rum:
  • Step 5 Pour the rum into a 7 to 8-ounce mug.
  • Step 6 Add the buttered rum batter.
  • Step 7 Top with the boiling water. Serve hot – and for fun drop in a cinnamon stick for swirling!
Blueberry Cinnamon Smoothie

Blueberry Cinnamon Smoothie

Plump and sweet blueberries blended with creamy yogurt, spiced with a surprising note of cinnamon and an extra touch of sweetness from honey. A gorgeous and delicious concoction!

Having breakfast on the go – or having none at all – has unfortunately become a way of life for most of us. This smooth and fruity beverage is a great way to start your day, whether you’re sitting at your table on in your car!

The food markets have been loaded this winter with gorgeous blueberries. Even in mid-February they are absolutely delectable! When buying fresh blueberries look for fruit with a deep color, no shriveling – something that happens with aging fruit. Then flip the carton over and check for any signs of mold or spoilage. But if you live in an area and all you have available are frozen berries, you can most certainly use them.

The ingredients for this cold beverage are quite basic, many items you might already have on hand. Milk and blueberry yogurt provide the foundation for this drink. The extra cold creaminess comes not from frozen yogurt or ice cream but a frozen ripe banana. Cinnamon and honey create a background that accentuates the blueberries in a delightful way.

Toss everything into your blender and in less than a minute or two you’ve made breakfast.

No need to skip your morning meal – grab a straw and go!

Blueberry Cinnamon Smoothie

¾ cup milk, 2% or whole

1 cup blueberry yogurt, regular or low-fat

2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1 frozen banana

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon honey

Pour the milk into a blender along with the yogurt.

Add the blueberries.

Cut or break the frozen banana into 3 to 4 pieces and drop into the blender.

Toss in the cinnamon and drizzle the honey into the blender.

Start by processing on low speed for about 10 seconds. Increase the speed to medium high for about 20 to 30 seconds until smooth.

Cover and refrigerate any extra you have left over, then give it a quick stir before serving. Makes 2 large drinks.

Blueberry Cinnamon Smoothie, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

February 18, 2019
: Makes 2 large smoothies.

Plump and sweet blueberries blended with creamy yogurt, spiced with a surprising undertone of cinnamon and an extra touch of sweetness from honey. A gorgeous and delicious concoction!

By:

Ingredients
  • ¾ cup milk, 2% or whole
  • 1 cup blueberry yogurt, regular or low-fat
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1 frozen banana
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon honey
Directions
  • Step 1 Pour the milk into a blender along with the yogurt.
  • Step 2 Add the blueberries.
  • Step 3 Cut or break the frozen banana into 3 to 4 pieces and drop into the blender.
  • Step 4 Toss in the cinnamon and drizzle the honey into the blender.
  • Step 5 Start by processing on low speed for about 10 seconds. Increase the speed to medium high for about 20 to 30 seconds until smooth.
  • Step 6 Cover and refrigerate any extra you have left over, then give it a quick stir before serving.
Spiced Pear Bellinis

Spiced Pear Bellinis

Sparkling cocktails shouldn’t be reserved for special occasions or the holidays. And here’s one good reason to pop the cork on the bubbly! It’s a refreshing twist on the classic Bellini delivered with a subtle sweetness from fresh pears and a hint of spice from cinnamon and nutmeg.

With an extra bottle or two of Prosecco left in my fridge post New Year’s – toasting the last weekend of the first month of 2019 seemed to be in order. I also had a handful of ripe pears on my counter so this was a great fit for my “leftovers”!

Purée ripe pears…

then add a splash of pear brandy – a gorgeous spirit made with over 30 pounds of pears in very bottle. Even if you’re not one to sip on such, brandy and cognacs add a beautiful depth in cooking or cocktails.

Toss in a sprinkling of ground cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg to highlight the delightful flavor of pears then finish with a generous splash of chilled bubbly.

You’ve got an elegant drink for your brunch menu or cocktails for a relaxing afternoon or evening curled up in front of a fire!

Spiced Pear Bellinis

¼ cup pear purée, about 2 ripe pears peeled and cored

½ teaspoon of Fruit Fresh

2 teaspoons pear brandy

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1-1/4 cup Prosecco or champagne, well chilled

Purée the ripe pears using an immersion blender or standard blender. You will need ¼ cups of the purée. Stir in the Fruit Fresh to help preserve the light color of the pears. You can refrigerate the pear purée, covered for a day or two.

Pour the pear purée into a cocktail mixer.

Add the pear brandy along with the cinnamon and nutmeg.

Stir or whisk to blend the spices into the pear purée.

Add the chilled Prosecco and stir well.

Pour the Bellinis into champagne flutes or white wine goblets. Makes 2 to 3 cocktail depending on the type of barware you use.

Spiced Pear Bellinis, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

January 25, 2019
: Makes 2 cocktails.

A refreshing twist on the classic Bellini delivered with a subtle sweetness from fresh pears and a hint of spice from cinnamon and nutmeg.

By:

Ingredients
  • ¼ cup pear purée, about 2 ripe pears peeled and cored
  • ½ teaspoon of Fruit Fresh
  • 2 teaspoons pear brandy
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1-1/4 cup Prosecco or champagne, well chilled
Directions
  • Step 1 Purée the ripe pears using an immersion blender or standard blender. You will need ¼ cups of the purée. Stir in the Fruit Fresh to help preserve the light color of the pears. You can refrigerate the pear purée, covered for a day or two.
  • Step 2 Pour the pear purée into a cocktail mixer.
  • Step 3 Add the pear brandy along with the cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir or whisk to blend the spices into the pear purée.
  • Step 4 Add the chilled Prosecco and stir well.
  • Step 5 Pour the Bellinis into champagne flutes or white wine goblets.
Date Smoothies

Date Smoothies

The transition between all the holiday goodies and real life can be a challenging one. But this luscious smoothie might help ease the pain!

Dates are naturally sweet with an almost caramel like flavor. Said to be high in a variety of nutritional values – great source of fiber, antioxidants and good things supporting brain health – all added benefits to their delectable taste!

This isn’t a nutritional blog and we’re not offering medical advice – we just really like dates. And this is a delicious way to use them!

Smoothies have been around since the 1930s and there’s no shortage of fun combinations of ingredients. Bananas add great flavor and creaminess. I always keep ripe bananas in the freezer. So don’t toss super ripe bananas. Though on the outside they look a bit rough they have an intense flavor and are wonderful for baking and can be used in place of ice cream for frosty drinks.

This smoothie blends dates with bananas along with familiar additions of milk and yogurt plus a touch of tahini.

Tahini is a smooth and soft nut butter of sorts – almost a thick liquid – made from toasted sesame seeds. It has a flavor resembling toasted nuts. You can normally find tahini with the nut butters in food markets but if you can’t locate it you can certainly use creamy peanut butter or your favorite nut butter.

Dates were one of my Grandmother’s favorite things and after one sip of this beverage you’ll understand why!

Date Smoothies

¾ cup vanilla yogurt

½ cup milk

1/3 cup chopped pitted dates

3 tablespoons tahini or creamy peanut butter

2 frozen bananas

1 ripe banana

½ cup ice cubes

Scoop the yogurt into a VitaMix or blender followed by the milk.

Add the chopped dates, then the tahini paste.

Cut the frozen and the ripe banana into thirds, add to the blender.

Pour in the ice cubes. Process the mixture starting on low for about 10 seconds then on high speed for about 15 to 20 seconds until smooth.

Serve well chilled.

Makes 2 large or 4 small drinks.

Date Smoothie, courtesy of Preserving Good Stock

January 7, 2019
: Makes 2 large or 4 small drinks.

Dates are naturally sweet with an almost caramel like flavor and they make the most luscious smoothie imaginable!

By:

Ingredients
  • ¾ cup vanilla yogurt
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1/3 cup chopped pitted dates
  • 3 tablespoons tahini or creamy peanut butter
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 ripe banana
  • ½ cup ice cubes
Directions
  • Step 1 Scoop the yogurt into a VitaMix or blender followed by the milk. Add the chopped dates, then the tahini paste.
  • Step 2 Cut the frozen and the ripe banana into thirds, add to the blender.
  • Step 3 Pour in the ice cubes. Process the mixture starting on low for about 10 seconds then on high speed for about 15 to 20 seconds until smooth.
  • Step 4 Serve well chilled.