June is National Iced Tea Month, which I did not find out about until a few days ago. However, iced tea lovers drink it all summer as well as into the winter, so no need to apologize for the tardy posting, is there?Â One of the easiest ways to make fresh iced tea is to put a jar with the tea bags or leaves in the sun and let the liquid “tea” to the desired strength.
After my tea was ready, I then added some berry juice to it, chilled it,Â & used it in a green smoothie. So there are two parts to this posting: the recipes for sun tea and the smoothie and also a reprint on food combining in smoothies by Victoria Boutenko, whose books I have reviewed previously. The article is reprinted with her permission and the website link is: www.rawfamily.com.
P.S. If you have been following June’s recipes, you will see that I feature berries in most of them. They are one of my favorite food categories and I am grateful they are also health-promoting!
Sun Tea before exposing it to the sun on my condo patio.
Utensils: One quart jar, strainer
Prep. Time: About one hour
Cooking Time: None
Category: Vegan, Gluten Free, Sugar Free*
Sun Tea after one hour
2 cups filtered water
1-2 green tea bags
1-2 peppermint tea bags (or fresh peppermint leaves)
1/2 cup berry juice (I used organic blueberry, pomegranate juice)
1. Fill jar with filtered water and add tea bags and/or leaves. (I have fresh peppermint on my patio garden, so I used these.)
2. Place in the sun for about 2 hours.
3. Strain; add 1/2 cup juice and chill.
Variation: When serving, garnish with fresh mint leaves, if available.
*If the tea is not sweet enough for you, feel free to add stevia (sweetener from stevia leaves; See Glossary) or add honey.
Sun Tea after 2 hours
To make my green smoothie, I used 8 ounces of chilled Berry Sunny Tea, added three or four leaves of organic butter crunch lettuce, some fresh fruit, and buzzed until smooth in the blender. I have enclosed a recipe posted previously, because I didn’t think to photographic my green smoothie from the iced tea. I changed the recipe to reflect using sun tea instead of water.
Berry Sunny â€œGreenâ€ Smoothie
Ingredients (approximate amounts)
one cup Berry Sunny Iced tea
2 â€“ 3 leaves of organic Romaine lettuce or a handful of spinach or arugula
1/2 organic mango, peeled and cut
1/2 cup organic strawberries, washed & stems removed
1/4 cup organic blueberries, washed & stems removed
1. Place iced tea in blender. Add greens (lettuce will have to be cut smaller) & blend.
2. Add other fruits and more tea for thinner consistency. Blend well.
3. Drink within the same day as prepared.
Note: The fruits and greens can be of your choosing. Use whatâ€™s in season at the markets and what you have on hand. Add more or less water depending on whether or not you want a very thick smoothie or a thinner smoothie. Also, the type of fruits you choose can be more or less watery, so start with one cup iced tea and add if necessary.
You may purchase Green for Life Here.
Below is the article (mentioned earlier) to explain why Green Smoothies do not violate the hygienic idea of proper food combining. The article is taken from Victoria’s Book, Green for Life, shown above andÂ which I reviewed previously. (Note: The sections in bold are my addition to highlight the important elements of the essay.) Also, you can find the Food Combining Diet in my Nobody Eats Like Me category.Â I posted it into 4 parts, starting last July 10th, 2011, so you can click on July 2011 in the archives & scroll back to July 10th.)
Food Combining and Green Smoothies
by Victoria Boutenko
A popular question that I receive often is: Victoria, isnâ€™t a green smoothie poor food combining?
I respond with the following fragment from my book Green for Life:
I wonder how greens, such as kale, romaine lettuce, spinach, carrot tops, and others got classified as vegetables? Why do we call completely different food groups â€œvegetablesâ€ when they look different and contain different sets of nutrients? A produce manager from a local health food store suggested that the produce section be divided into several different smaller groups of plant foods with specific similarities, for example, roots (carrots, beets, daikon, etc.) flowers (broccoli, cauliflower, artichokes, etc.), and non-sweet fruit (cucumbers, zucchini, squash, tomatoes, etc.). Combining foods with similar nutritional values would not only help shoppers to find necessary ingredients faster but would also help them to become familiar with more plant foods and increase their variety of vegetarian food consumption.
Obviously, people do not consider plants to be important enough to be classified properly. Even at the regular supermarket one can see that other food departments have more detailed classifications. For example, the meat department is divided into poultry, fish, and meat, which in turn is subdivided into smaller sections such as veal, ground meats, bones, and subproducts. Every item is carefully categorized, specifying which part of the animal it is from. Cheeses have their own specifications. Nobody would ever classify cheese and meat together in one â€œsandwich foodâ€ group, because it would be inconvenient and unclear.
Yet this kind of confusion and error continually occurs in the produce section. Some errors are quite serious, to such a degree that they could cause health problems. As an example of this, placing starchy roots in the same category with tomatoes and rhubarb could prompt customers to make improper food-combining choices. Many nutritionists believe in the benefits of proper food combining. For example, starchy tubers combined in one meal with sour fruits or vegetables can create fermentation and gas in our intestines.
Placing greens in the same category as vegetables has caused people to mistakenly apply the combining rules of starchy vegetables to greens. Driven by this confusion, many concerned people wrote to me inquiring if blending fruits with greens was proper food combining. They had heard that â€œfruits and vegetables did not mix well.â€ Yes, to combine starchy vegetables with fruits would not be a good idea. Such a combination can cause gas in the intestines. However, greens are not vegetables, and greens are not starchy. In fact, greens are the only food group that helps digest other foods through stimulating the secretion of digestive enzymes. Thus greens can be combined with any other foods. In addition, it has been recorded that chimpanzees often consume fruits and leaves from the same tree at the same feeding time. In fact, Jane Goodall and other researchers have observed them rolling fruits inside of leaves and eating them as â€œsandwiches.â€
There is yet another great misconception that results from placing greens and vegetables in the same category. Such inappropriate generalizations have lead researchers to the erroneous conclusion that greens are a poor source of protein. Contrary to this popular belief, greens are an excellent source of protein, as you will see in the following chapter.
I propose that we separate greens from vegetables, now and forevermore. Greens have never received proper attention and have never been researched adequately because they have been incorrectly identified as vegetables. We donâ€™t even have a proper name for greens in most languages. The name â€œdark green leafy vegetablesâ€ is long and inconvenient to use, similar to â€œthe animal with horns that gives milk.â€
We donâ€™t have complete nutritional data about greens. For this book I had to collect bits and pieces of information out of books and magazines from different countries, and I still donâ€™t have all the parts. I have not, for example, been able to find the complete nutritional content of carrot tops anywhere. Nevertheless, I have enough to draw some essential conclusions: greens are the primary food group that matches human nutritional needs most completely.
You may purchase Green for Life Here.
P.S.Â This is my last posting for June. I am combining July & August and will post the Home Page in a day or so.