Indianapolis and the Green Smoothie Virgin!

Wendy the Virgin Green Smoothie Maker and Kids

How can there be a green smoothie ingredient I don’t know?!

I’m just back from a speaking tour in Indianapolis, Milwaukee, and Chicago. In Indy, the cutest young blonde girl named Wendy wrote Coach Madeline volunteering to make the green smoothies for the lecture. She thought she was volunteering to make *a* green smoothie. Like, a glassful. She’d never made one before–a true green-smoothie virgin!

But did that slow her down? Nope. She borrowed someone’s Blendtec or Vitamix or something, and headed to the farmer’s market.

She made 4 gallons of green smoothie, as requested, for a couple hundred people. Kristin and I took the unused gallon on the road. We drank the entire thing in 48 hours, as we drove across a time zone, into Wisconsin and Illinois.

Wendy told me that at the farmer’s market, she was introduced to SORREL. Of course I came home and looked it up online. Check out the photos here.

Sorrel greens storesorrel leafWendy was told it was LEMONY–and it really did make a lovely green smoothie. Then GSG’s webmaster, Jason (we love him, and our other Milwaukee geek, Jamison!) who lives near Milwaukee, told me the same story. About lemony sorrel at farmer’s markets, growing everywhere.

I’m so embarrassed I don’t know this green! I’m jealous, since I’ve NEVER seen it here in Utah. It’s apparently very seasonal, so those of you in the Midwest, have you used this green? Lucky you.

Remember, the key to long-time green smoothie success, is VARIETY! Do chimpanzees eat a tree down to the nub? Nope, they GRAZE all day long, eating a variety of green foods. The only animal I know who eats very little variety is the zebra. I learned this when I went on safari in Africa. Zebras eat only about 7 grasses. Still, we’re complex creatures, so…….SPINACH ONLY?

So many greens to choose from!
So many greens to choose from!

That ain’t good enough. I talk to too many people who make green smoothies regularly, but spinach is all they use. Remember that all greens have different nutritional profiles. No one green covers all the bases. If you eat the same one, it’s possible that the anti-nutrient(s) in that specific green may build up in your tissues, a bit, and make you a little nauseous when you go to make and drink your greens.

Branch out!

Try SORREL if you’re lucky enough to have access to it. Beet greens, arugula, the leaves of any squash plant, grape leaves, kale (several varieties), collard greens, chard, the tops of strawberries, carrots and turnip greens are great choices. You can also use weeds like dandelion, lambsquarter, purslane  and or herbs like chamomile and lemon thyme. Try some sprout greens like pea or sunflower shoots, celery and sprouts like alfalfa, radish, fenugreek.

You don’t have to use ALL of them, all the time. But have several greens every week, at least. Use what’s IN SEASON and use what you can get organically. Grow a garden. Learn your wild edibles.

And, thank you WENDY!