While we’re all anxiously waiting for berry season to begin at the farmers market, I thought I’d slip in a couple of savory smoothie ideas to hold you over. It’s hard not to get obsessed with the exquisite berries available to us in the Northwest but in the meantime, rhubarb and mint are in season now and these recipes are definitely worth trying. Personally, I prefer savory to sweet any day, but that’s just me. These are both thirst-quenching and refreshing — perfect adult summer drinks. I found these recipes in Melissa Clark’s column in the NY Times Summer Drinks section this week. Thanks, Melissa!
The rhubarb smoothie starts with a simple rhubarb honey compote. I made mine considerably less sweet than Melissa’s and left out the rosewater. Here’s my loose interpretation of her Rhubarb Shake.
Rhubarb Smoothie (1)
Ingredients: About 2 cups of sliced rhubarb, approx. 3 stalks/ 2 T honey/ 2 T water/ 1 cup Greek or any whole fat yogurt/ 2 cups ice cubes/ Chopped pistachios for garnish.
Directions: Place sliced rhubarb, honey and water in a small saucepan/ Bring to a simmer and cook until rhubarb has “melted” about 6-8 minutes/ Let it cool in the fridge/ Place about 1 cup rhubarb compote (you’ll have extra left for other uses), yogurt, and ice cubes in blender/ Blend until smooth, adding a tablespoon or so of water if it’s too thick/ Garnish with chopped pistachios.
So pretty and pink, could even be a lovely light dessert.
Now I can’t wait to tell you about my favorite of the two, even more on the savory side, Mint & Lime Zest Lassi. Melissa Clark calls this a Salt and Pepper Lassi with Mint and while it does have salt & pepper (and a pinch of sugar too), the flavors of the mint and lime zest make it unique and sounds a bit more appealing. It’s just the right balance of ingredients that make this a delicious not-too-sweet summer mocktail.
Mint & Lime Zest Lassi (1)
Ingredients: 1 cup Greek or any whole milk yogurt/ 5 or 6 sprigs of fresh mint, stems removed, leaves chopped/ Zest of one small lime/ Freshly ground pepper and sea salt to taste/ Pinch of demerara or brown sugar (optional).
Directions: Blend all ingredients in blender until smooth/ Add several tablespoons water until you have the right consistency — about 2 – 4T, blend again/ Serve over ice.
And then there’s my old favorite kale smoothie. This one is made with a banana and all sorts of fresh greens and herbs but next time I think I’ll try yogurt instead.
If you haven’t already — drag out your lawn chair, hose it off, find a good summer book, a sunny spot and make a fresh smoothie. Heaven guaranteed.