June 12, 2014

Coconut Green Smoothie & Watermelon Agua Fresca

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After a few hours of stroller-cruising Vancouver’s seawall in the sun, or following a tiring day of working and running errands, I often crave something to drink that’s not just plain water. Something ice-cold and flavourful, but still natural and healthy – to refresh and rehydrate. Y’know?

Often this means a reach into the grocery cooler case for a coconut water – great for a nutrition-packed smoothie, a fruit-infused agua fresca, or to drink straight from the carton – when the afternoon just begs a tasty, chilled bevvy to keep me at my best.

If you haven’t ventured into sippable greens territory, start right here! Even kale-haters will happily slurp up this frothy, nutrient-packed smoothie (seriously, my 1-year-old knocks it back in milliseconds).

Any grassy “green” taste is well-masked beneath layers of coconut water, pineapple, yogurt and banana. Quite possibly the tastiest way to get your leafy veggies, and it makes a super-healthy breakfast-on-the-go.

I’m into O.N.E. coconut water because it’s totally pure (just one ingredient – water from the inside of a coconut), is not too sweet, and is inherently “light” (no added sugar). Coconut water also offers a ton of naturally-occurring electrolytes to replenish.

If not drinking it straight or in a smoothie, I like to use it in something fruity and tart to refresh, like this Watermelon Agua Fresca. It’s bright, fresh and minty, with a bracing splash of lime. O.N.E. adds a touch of sweetness and mellow coconut perfume.

It’s basically a spa in the tropics with a straw. Flip flops optional, but of course recommended.

The ingredients are whirred together in a blender and then forced through a fine mesh sieve into a pitcher. If you’re going to serve it right away, I recommend chilling all of your ingredients in advance.

Serve it cold with sprigs of mint and lots of ice. Or, if you want to be fancy, go one step further and make watermelon ice cubes! Just freeze 1″ cubes of melon in a single layer on a plate – you can transfer them to a zipper-top freezer bag once they’re solid.

Of course, if you aren’t into mint, just leave it out.

Many people aren’t aware of that coconut water is also fabulously versatile beyond the glass – you can use it as a way to infuse sweet, nutty coconut flavour into dishes without the richness of coconut milk, in place of water to cook rice, instead of water or broth in soup, as poaching liquid for fish & vegetables… endless possibilities!

Ingredients

For Coconut-Kale Smoothie:

  • 1 cup torn kale leaves, stems discarded (about 2 large leaves)
  • 1 1/2 cups O.N.E. Pineapple Coconut Water (or 1 cup plain coconut water, plus 1/2 cup pineapple juice or chopped pineapple)
  • 3/4 cup 2% or full fat plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 frozen bananas
  • 1 cup ice cubes

For Watermelon-Coconut Agua Fresca:

  • 3 cups O.N.E. Coconut Water
  • 3 cups (1 lb/454 g) watermelon, cut in 1″ cubes (plus more to freeze for melon ice cubes, if desired)
  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tbsp packed mint leaves, optional

Preparation

For Coconut-Kale Smoothie:

  1. Combine all ingredients in the container of a blender and process until smooth, about 30 seconds. Serve immediately.

For Watermelon-Coconut Agua Fresca:

  1. Combine all ingredients in the container of a blender and process until completely smooth, about 30 seconds. Force through a fine mesh sieve into a pitcher; discard pulp. Serve chilled, with ice or watermelon ice cubes.

  2. (To make watermelon ice cubes, place 1″ cubes of melon on a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze in a single layer. Once frozen, transfer to a zip-top freezer bag.)

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Hi, I’m Jenn! I’m in the Foodess kitchen making a spectacular mess + making something delicious, in roughly equal parts. So happy that you’ve joined me!

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