Saturday, June 2, 2012

The Smoothie: Infinite Fantasies in Foodie Responsibility

Earlier this year the media created a storm when Paula Deen signed a fiscally lucrative deal to hawk a diabetes drug. After years of home cooking on her personal television show, she admitted to the public that she had contracted the disease and instead of taking this opportunity to educate the public on the eating habits that led her to this diagnosis, she chose to make money off her misfortune with the message that with the new drug, she could continue to eat just like she always had. I was offended because it sent a message to the masses that as long as we have medicine for our bad habits, we can continue to revel in them. I used to watch her television show similarly to the ways I would look at Star Magazine on Sundays at my mother’s house; with a mix of horror and fascination. I remember the days when Deen’s husband was alive and she would deliver her food to him, thick with fat and sugar and white poisons, in bed spooning creamy puffs of lard into his mouth with love. It was a scene of utter gluttony and laziness that was hard to stomach.

I also recall that when I decided to write about food, I also felt like I had a responsibility to write about how I eat honestly so that people would understand that I promote balance and moderation. Sure, I tend to go out on the weekends with my boyfriend and eat anything I want regardless of fat, sugar or calorie content. But during the week I live on a diet of tiny meals consisting of mostly super foods, yogurt, fish and dark leafy greens to cleanse and moderate my system. Like all things in life, enlightened eating takes conscious practice based on an extreme respect for our bodies as machines and life as something that needs proper fuel and stoking for excellence.

For me, being a foodie is about appreciating food and all the creativity that surrounds the culinary field. It’s about eating responsibly and with pleasure simultaneously. It’s about appreciation for foods, which are pure, local, raised with care, and simple in goodness without the additions of preservatives and all the other man-made accoutrements.

Everyday during the week, I try to squeeze a smoothie in as a replacement for one meal. Not only does this become a powerhouse glass stocked with all the vitamins I need, it also becomes a shot of liquid energy to get me through a busy and productive day. Sometimes I buy one out but mostly I make one in my own kitchen blender. I am constantly learning new ways to drink these wonderful shakes and the possibilities are endless.

Recently, I discovered the best smoothies at the store and deli counter Local1205 a store in Venice Beach that sells products, meats, cheeses, juices and items for the body all from local vendors, artisan chefs and farmers including the chakra tonics of my friend Jacquelyn Richey. I asked the guy behind the counter if I could steal their menu since so many of the combinations were inspiring and I wanted to make them at home. So here’s a starter list of smoothies and what to put in them for any of my readers who wish to start this healthy, daily routine.

(Mix and match, tweak and revise as you see fit!)

Viva Brasil
Banana, acai, guarana, almond milk

Sandy Seabed
Banana, dates, almond milk

Pale Shores
Orange juice, coconut meat, soy lecithin, agave

King of the Gods
Pineapple, papaya, mango, caja, graviola, almond milk

Infinite Fantasy
Avocado, agave, Himalayan pink salt, cacao powder, almond milk

Shady Underwood
Cashews, maca, vegan protein, tocotrienols, cacao nibs, agave, almond milk

Flowering Moon
Coconut meat, raw almonds, vegan protein, agave, cinnamon, almond milk

Acai Shake
Acai, guarana, almond milk

Beauty Burst (My personal favorite!)
Banana, strawberries, blueberries, acai, flax seed powder, coconut oil, vitamineral green, almond milk

Jade Mountain
Vitamineral green, maca, tocotrienols, bee pollen, cacao nibs, raw almonds, vanilla, agave

Mediterranean Summer
Peaches, plain Greek yogurt, granola, raw local honey, almond milk

Pineapple, hemp seeds, coconut meat, vitamineral green, almond milk

Tropical Wave
Fresh squeezed orange and grapefruit juice blended with pineapple

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