Monday, August 13, 2012

The Science of Getting Kids to Eat Their Veggies

This is more of a culinary post from another blog that I contribute to called Bitchin' in the Kitchen, but I liked the results so much (of the public response to the post AND the actual food produced by following the recipe!) that I wanted to post it here.

I am totally not kidding!  Dairy free and full of green veggies.
This is a crazy recipe, but it tastes amazing!  More important for me, there's no dairy-hangover.

How did we run across this?  In Whole Foods--the VitaMix Guy was there doing a demo and tastings.  My children love the sample tables at the health food store and this live demonstration was intriguing to them.  They watched as VitaMix Guy threw a packed cup of spinach, ice, half of an avocado, a touch of peppermint flavoring (organic) and agave nectar in this amazing appliance and flipped it on.  Instantly, it was pulverized into a creamy, green "ice cream".  Then, they added vegan mini chocolate chips, switched it on for just a few seconds (so the chips were still chunky, but the chocolate flavor got mixed in).

My boys ate their entire portion and then, miraculously, went on an expedition to find avocados and spinach in the produce section because they wanted me to make it at home.  I looked at the VitaMix guy with incredulity as my kids sauntered back cheerfully, piping, "These are organic avocadoes, right?", and "Hey, mom, I'm not sure if this is spinach, but it looks like it." They were beet greens, actually, but they worked just fine!  VitaMix Man turned to me, took a little bow, smiled and said, "You're welcome!".

Vegan Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

I don't have a VitaMix blender, so I modified the recipe:
Note: Use liquids sparingly to keep it more like ice cream and less like a smoothie.
Makes 4 servings.

  • 2 cups mild-flavored greens (we used beet greens, but baby spinach will work, too)
  • 1 tsp organic peppermint flavoring
  • 3 cups ice
  • 1 ripe avocado (for creaminess)
  • 3 T agave nectar
  • almond (or other) milk in a small quantity
To aid in blending, I added almond milk sparingly to help the blades turn.
Blend until smooth.
Stop the blender.  Add:
  • 1 handful of vegan chocolate chips 
and blend until incorporated (but not completely pulverized--it will ruin the beautiful green color)


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