Thirsty Thursday – Summertime!

I have made some awesome beverages since the summer started. They hardly get any love on Instagram, even though the photos are gorge and they taste delish (yes, so good I have to use the shortened words)! So here they are, in their beautiful, refreshing glory…

We’ll start with Beet-Ginger Lemonade

Beet Ginger Lemonade
This is not a petri dish…

This screenshot was taken from a short video demonstrating how awesome my frother is (I LOVE MY FROTHER!)!

I make the beet ginger lemonade in 16 oz mason jars. The ingredients below are for one mason jar:

  • 1 teaspoon of ginger (I like lots of ginger! You can use less, more…)
  • 1/4 cup of lemon juice (a scant 1/4 cup, not over & I’ll show what I use below)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of beet powder
  • Enough water so the jar is almost full
  • Several drops of liquid stevia (to taste, you have to find your perfect dropper amount) AND…the secret ingredient…
  • The juice from half an orange!

Just blend this all up until it looks pink and lovely! The orange adds more sweetness and goes so well with the beet flavor. I might have Beet Orangeade coming up soon!

Now, on to the trendy recipe – Mermaid Lemonade!

Mermaid Lemonade
Okay, don’t let the sea monkey-looking stuff on top scare you. It’s just algae…whoops…

See, remember how I said that I don’t really keep up with food trends? Well, here is another exception to that rule. Spirulina. I actually like it. Not only is it good for detoxing your body (or making it feel detoxed), loaded with vitamins – it makes things pretty. And that’s the most important thing.

Again, 16 oz mason jar servings:

  • 1/4 cup of the lemon juice I’ll show you below
  • Several drops of liquid stevia
  • 1/3 teaspoon of spirulina powder
  • Water until jar is almost full

Mix with your frother(!) or you can put the top on and shake for more fun!

Okay, now for something exotic…

Prickly Pear Lemonade

Prickly Pear Lemonade

 

You know how you have that sense memory, and if you smell or taste something it just takes you back? That’s what happened when I made this. It reminds me of a brunch I had at Citrus in NYC several years ago. I had Crab Cakes Benedict (eggs, hard poached. Yes, I’m that dweeb) and Prickly Pear Lemonade. It was my first time tasting prickly pear and I was a little nervous. Why? Because I have so many odd allergies, duh (dweeb). But it was delicious! And I wasn’t allergic! So, I had the brunch and then I saw Shel’s Shorts – 14 Short Plays by Shel Silverstein – it was a nice Sunday!

Anyway…I was at my local fruit stand and I saw a tiny basket of these magenta fruits and I had to buy one and try to make that lemonade I had all those years ago (well, only like 9 years ago, but whatever)…

First, break down the pear:

  • 1 prickly pear
  • 16 oz water

Blend in your blender (Nutribullet, Ninja, Vitamix, whatever) until smoothish. Use a fine mesh strainer to add the mix to:

  • 1/4 cup of lemon juice (it’s coming, I swear!)
  • Several drops of liquid stevia
  • Water to fill the jar

Put on the lid and shake, or mix with your frother!

I can’t really describe the flavor. Okay, maybe like a deeper watermelon. Like a watermelon with depth. You know what I mean. Heartier! Yes! A heartier watermelon. Phew!

So, now that I’ve finished up the lemonade section I can finally show the juice I use…

Lemon Base
The “secret” lemon juice…

Ta-da! That’s it! Santa Cruz Organic Pure Lemon Juice! I’m sure you have some already, I was just being dramatic. I use this in everything! I’ll buy bottles of unsweetened tea, add this and stevia and bam! It tastes like something I’d actually want to drink!

Speaking of iced tea…

Here’s some Goji Berry Green Tea for ya!

Goji Green Tea
Goji Green Tea! That’s all I got…

So, to me, goji berries taste similar to craisins (that was easy), and they have some great health benefits, such as antioxidants, which make it known as a superfood. I added it to another superfood, green tea, and it tastes great! I am a fan of this one…

For 3, 16 oz mason jar servings:

  • 3 mason jarfuls of water
  • 9 green tea bags (they don’t have to be special, unless you want them to be…)
  • The juice of three limes
  • 3 heaping tablespoons of goji berries
  • Liquid stevia drops, to taste

I like to put a heaping tablespoon of the goji berries in each of the jars first. Then juice each of the limes in each jar. While the juice and the berries sit in the jar, I bring water to near boil in a saucepan (I’m fancy) and add the tea bags. Let them steep, but not for too long because green tea gets bitter quickly. I remove the tea bags and pour the green tea over the goji-lime mix. After all of that I add the stevia drops…

Then, into the fridge and a few hours later…beautiful, tasty tea!

Speaking of beautiful tea…I’ll end this post with my favorite tea and favorite beverage picture…

Grapefruit Green Tea

Grapefruit Green Tea

This is my favorite! I love grapefruit! I am a fan of tartness and this is just so perfectly tart and sweet! Yum!

For 3, 16 oz mason jar servings:

  • 3 mason jarfuls of water
  • 9 green tea bags (whatever brand…)
  • The juice of three ruby red grapefruits
  • Liquid stevia drops, to taste

It’s so simple, too. I mean, just juice and strain the grapefruits right into each jar and make the tea, like I painstakingly explained in the last recipe, and combine! Add your stevia in the end and, yay! Delicious…

Actually, with all of these recipes, you might think you added enough stevia but once you taste them a day or two later, you will want to add a few more drops. That’s just what I’ve found.

Yay! So, make these drinks before summer ends! I can’t believe it’s August already! Next week, where I in the Hudson Valley, it’s supposed to be rainy and in the mid-70s! Wow! Actually, if it wasn’t raining I’d be really happy about the temperature drop (I hate the heat)…

 

Quickest Meal Prep Ever…

So, it’s Monday. Luckily I am working from home (as I do 60% to 80% of the week) so I can throw together a quick meal prep for when I do have to leave the house this week. I follow a low carb-high(ish) fat meal plan.

I had heard about all of the low carb and no carb variations for years but I was skeptical. I thought “Is this really going to work for me?”. I was so stuck on the “fat makes you fat” rule we were all programmed to follow for weight management. Low fat had worked for me for years BUT I believe that is what put me on an up and down weight roller coaster. I’d do the low fat/low cal thing and then, because it is a deprivation diet, I’d binge when I lost all the weight I wanted, only to gain it back again. I feel like I eat so much now that I am shocked when I look at myself, look at the scale and put on clothes. I am losing weight! I thought I’d gain weight because I have been eating things that were considered “bad”.

This meal prep is not all I eat all day. I have a couple of protein smoothies during the day, a salad of some sort and usually some cheese or lunch meat and “fat bombs” here and there along with this. There aren’t any recipes today, but at least the pictures are colorful and appealing…

It all starts with mason jars and Pyrex…

MasonJars
Mise en place…that applies to storage containers too…

Thanks to Pinterest for putting me on to glass jars all those years ago! I was always a Pyrex fan – because I hate stained, old plastic storage containers. Now, mason jars have taken me to the next level (of perfectionism)…

Nectarines
Nice nectarines, nice…

The nectarines looked good and they were fairly cheap – a great combination. I love random pictures of fruit…with shadows, because it’s pouring outside this morning…

FruitsinJars
Gorgeous fruit…In jars…

Oh, what’s this? Nectarines AND strawberries? Really great produce sales this week, what can I say? Plus they look so nice in the jars (my precious jars)…

So, on to the main course. Dinner is pretty easy as well…

MainCourse
Turkey Meatballs and Broccoli-Cauliflower Mash

These are turkey meatballs that I got from the frozen section. I haven’t found a recipe that I like enough for meal prepping. I’ll have to try and report back here. I just cook these frozen ones in marinara, put some mozzarella on top, pop them in the toaster oven to melt the cheese and I’m done.

I really, really enjoy mashing cruciferous vegetables. Nope, not just cauliflower, but broccoli and even Brussels sprouts (Yes, I know there are more cruciferous veggies. I didn’t want to list them all, but yeah, I’ll mash those too!)…

Here is the completed prep! So small, it fits on my cutting board…

AllTogetherPrep
Added some olives, too…