Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Kale, Coconut & Ginger Smoothie


I started eating a raw diet twice a week and drinking green smoothies for breakfast after a summer of intensive traveling and weeks on end of unhealthy.  My travels brought me to Brazil where I spent days on end drinking light lager, eating piles of rice and seafood and finishing off with giant slices of coconut cake. Unfortunately, that excess and gluttony also led to severe acne, bloating and sluggishness.

My raw food bible is 'Everyday Raw Detox' by Meredith Baird & Matthew Kenney. I have no idea who these people are, except that Matthew Kenney is apparently a very well known raw food chef and owns several raw food restaurants. The thing that drew me to the book is that it contained recipes that I could very well replicate in my kitchen, and they were actually recipes that I would eat happily without gagging. The book is also littered with beautiful pictures and interesting blurbs about nutrition which makes for a very pleasant read.

Another book that helped me combat the general feeling of unhealthiness and skin problems is 'The Green Smoothie Bible' by Kristine Miles. This book is slightly less frou-frou, and comes in a very basic, pared down format with no pictures. But the best thing about this book is that it has a wealth information to help one get started on green smoothies, including ingredients to use and the various kinds of superfoods you can incorporate to give your smoothies a further health boost.

I'm sure that eating any kind of vegetables on a regular basis, regardless of form, is the reason why I started feeling slightly better and my skin cleared out tremendously. I don't think green smoothies or a raw diet is particularly groundbreaking or the be all end all for a healthy lifestyle, but it certainly is a good and less tedious way of ensuring that one gets plenty of vegetables in. I've even converted my kale-hating husband into a smoothie fan by simply pulverizing other things he likes better to cover up the taste.

I'm posting my go-to recipe which is a great way for someone to get started on green smoothies. I would highly recommend the two aforementioned books if you're looking to get into blending and raw food for the long term, and I will probably be posting some recipes out of those book in the future. But since this recipe is mostly for a long time Assembled Hazardly reader, Sarah, I'm posting something very basic that I truly love and used on multiple occasions to convert ardent carnivores to the beauty of green smoothies.

This calls for coconut meat and coconut water which you can get fresh and whole, otherwise, canned or packaged coconut water will work as well. Frozen coconut meat is available in Asian markets, and if all fails, substitute with unsweetened coconut flakes (soaked in coconut water for about two hours) or coconut butter.

Kale, Coconut & Ginger Smoothie
Makes two 16 oz servings

2 cups chopped kale (frozen also works)
1 cup fresh coconut meat (or 2 tablespoons coconut butter)
3 cups coconut water
1 banana, peeled
1 knob ginger (size depends on how spicy you like it, I use a knob about twice the size of my thumb)
1 tablespoon local honey or agave
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1 cup ice

Chuck in the specific order listed, blend until smooth and serve. I love my Vitamix for smoothies because it's powerful enough to blend things in a smooth liquid. Most blenders with ice-crushing capabilities should be able to give you a good enough consistency, but you may find that some blenders produce a gritty texture.


  1. ohhh, definitely giving this a try!

  2. Yay thanks for posting! I definitely wanna try this out once I get a vitamix. The only thing intimidating about this recipe for me are the coconut ingredients ... I've never cooked with coconut before so have never bought and prepped it ever!

    1. I've updated the post -- you can just use packaged coconut water and coconut flakes/coconut butter. No need to open coconuts.

  3. Thanks for the coconut tips! Ok, much less intimidating now :)

    I'm needing a detox right about now, so this is very timely. Unfortunately it's not from indulgent travels but rather sudden (and kinda premature) aging! Looking forward to seeing more favorites from your detox menu