You all know by now that I am on a two-week cleanse and have become obsessed with smoothies in this time. I have been having so much fun experimenting with different flavor combinations and new ingredients. This past week, the first week of my cleanse, I discovered the magic of dates!! Now I know why they call them “nature’s candy”. Sweet enough to pop in your mouth whole to conquer any cravings, but all natural, fresh and cleanse friendly. My new-found love of dates came by accident, I happened across a container of something called “organic date coconut rolls” in the bulk section at Lexington Coop and became intrigued when I noticed they looked like little cookies and had only two ingredients: organic dates and organic coconut flakes. That’s it. Both ingredients are cleanse-friendly, so I bought them. They are incredible and so delicious, so much flavor and perfectly sweet. I have enjoyed maybe one a day or one every other day and they have been the perfect way to handle any sweet cravings I may have. Yesterday, when I went to the Coop to stock up on some things I needed for this week, I grabbed a pound of fresh organic Medjool dates to use in smoothies, eat on their own and to possibly experiment making my own date coconut rolls with. I thought tossing one date in a smoothie would be a nice natural and whole way to add a bit of sweetness. I was right. It was the perfect bit of sweet in this delicious smoothie. If you don’t like dates or can’t find them, you could certainly substitute a tablespoon of maple syrup, honey or agave syrup to your smoothie.
I also bought a jar of unsweetened almond butter for a recipe I am excited to try after my cleanse is over, but while in the shower this morning (yes, I think about food in the shower) I thought it would be great in a banana almond butter smoothie. So, I decided to experiment a bit this morning and wow, I am glad I did. This smoothie is the best one I have made yet, it has the perfect amount of sweetness and it is so wonderfully creamy that you actually feel like you are having a milkshake. I had meant to freeze a banana last night but forgot, so I just added a handful of ice cubes, if you use a frozen banana you can leave the ice cubes out. Frozen bananas are amazing in smoothies, such a brilliant way to get the chilly frostiness!
Do yourself a favor and make this smoothie, you will be amazed that something so good for you can taste so sinfully delightful.
Banana Almond Butter Smoothie
1 cup organic unsweetened almond milk
1 organic banana (preferably frozen)
2 tablespoons unsalted, unsweetened organic almond butter
1 fresh Medjool date, pit removed and cut in half
1 teaspoon organic vanilla
Whole nutmeg, grate a small amount into the blender just before blending
A small handfull of ice cubes (if your banana wasn’t frozen)
Add all the ingredients to your blender and process until smooth!