Tofu Mocha Smoothie

mocha tofu smoothie 002

tofu mocha smoothie photo by vsimon

Do you want a quick, dairy free eye opener?

Would you like the protein of two eggs in the morning, but cannot face the frying pan, or the egg?

Blend up a mocha smoothie made with silken tofu. This is definitely an A.M. adult beverage. And not too sweet. Make a small batch and save half in the fridge if you are “cooking” for one. It may be a bit thicker the next day. To chill out and thin, just add more ice cubes or water and blend.

Silken tofu is well named, nothing is silkier texture when blended. It is sold in shelf-stable blocks and comes in soft, firm, and extra firm textures. Organic or not. And light (lower fat) or not. Use whatever kind your store has. You may need to add a bit more water if you use the firm varieties.

Many folks want caffeine first thing in the morning. But you can use caffeine free coffee powder if you prefer.

Add the ice cubes if you like a bit of icy crunch. Omit the ice, and use more water, if you prefer your smoothies smooth.

Mocha Smoothie

serves 2 metric measures
12 oz block of silken tofu 335 grams
6 tablespoons dark brown sugar 80m grams
2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 
   not cocoa drink mix
12 grams
2 tablespoons instant coffee powder 8 grams
1/2 to 1 cup cold water 120 to 240 ml
about 6 ice cubes 90 grams

Put it all into a blender and process until smooth. Thin or sweeten more to your taste. Store any leftovers in the fridge.

Stay tuned for more smoothie recipes, dairy and dairy free. What flavors are your favorites?

This recipe was originally published in the Nourish column of the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness, July 2009.

Asparagus

 

 

Rebirth. Every year.  

It is so miraculous! 

 

In the north, spring brings welcome warm winds and sun on your cheeks. And shoots of early perennials leap from the earth. In March, I inspect our garden for the earliest signs of life. In April and May, I am signing the praises of fresh tender asparagus and using it any way I can think of.

 

Sure, you can buy it fresh in many markets through out the year. It is often expensive and I ignore it most of the time. Too often, it looks like tired little soldiers with droopy heads. The quality of super fresh asparagus is so superior that I buy it only when I can get it from local growers. In the spring, it is olive green with a crisp snap of the spear. Thick or thin stalks, which is better? It is a personal choice, I prefer thick. And for me, frozen and canned asparagus just do not measure up.

 

Asparagus is a dieter’s delight. It has less than 30 calories per cup! But it is rich in iron, folate, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamins A, C, and K. And a 1-cup serving even has 3 grams of fiber. Serving roasted asparagus is such a treat you will not feel deprived in any way.

 

Simple Roasted Asparagus
So spring-y, so simple, so quick.

Serve warm, room temperature, or chilled.

 

Fresh asparagus spears, 5-7 per person
Olive or canola oil
Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preheat oven to 450-degrees. Using a vegetable peeler, trim the bottom end of the spears.

Arrange the spears in a single layer on a rimmed sheet pan. Drizzle with a bit of oil and rub it around the spears.

 

Roast for about 10 minutes. Season to taste.

 

Variations
Lemon punch– sprinkle fresh lemon juice and grate the zest over the top before serving.
Orange dream– drizzle thawed orange juice concentrate over the spears. Use calcium fortified OJ concentrate for a little boost of calcium.
Sweet tang– drizzle with good balsamic vinegar when the spears come out of the oven.
Crunchy and salty crust– top spears with grated parmesan before roasting.
Soft and creamy finish– about half way through roasting, top with crumbled goat cheese.
For even more texture and nutrition– top any of the above with chopped nuts.