I’m Buddy the Elf when it comes to winter. I still shriek sounds of joy at the first snowfall (and every snowfall thereafter). Breathing in the crisp, cold air makes my lungs feel alive. And hikes along the snow-covered banks of the Mississippi etch permanent smile lines into my face. But sometimes, even a good streak of grey days can leave me feeling blue (and leave Hallie feeling like a caged animal).
So, every morning when I remember, which isn’t every morning, I pop a ray of sunshine—2000 IUs of Vitamin D3. She pops a Flinstone tablet. Literal VitD. And about once a week, if not more, Hal and I drink a glass of sunshine. Figurative VitD. It mostly just makes us happy.
We got hooked on Cookie and Kate’s Clementine Sunshine Smoothie last winter after begging the internet for ideas on what to do with all those clementines going bad on my counter. That smoothie eventually morphed into this—half a ripe banana, a handful of spinach, two peeled clementines, a generous dollop of plain yogurt, and plenty of ice.
I joined the baked donut club years after all the hype. I’ve now joined the green smoothie club in the same fashion. I’m forever a late adopter.
If you walk past our backdoor in the afternoon, you might find us in sweatshirts and thick socks. We turn up the heat to sip. The pale hardwood floors fade to sandy Minnesota lake shores. We can almost hear the waves crashing into the shore. It must be a windy day. Desperation leads to imagination which leads to bright ideas. Like this sunshine smoothie. It’ll make you happy.
- 2 small clementines, peeled
- 1/2 ripe banana
- handful of washed spinach
- 1/4 c. plain yogurt
- generous squirt of honey
- tiny pinch of kosher salt
- a couple drops of pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 c. ice
- Into a high-powered blender, add all ingredients, starting with the clementines and ending with the ice.
- Begin blending on low speed for about 30 seconds to bring ice to the bottom of the blender to begin crushing. Slowly turn speed up to high and blend for about a minute or more. You shouldn't be able to hear ice crushing and the smoothie should have a swirl pattern at the top, coming together and dipping in the middle.
- Turn machine off. Smoothie should burp (or a bubble should pop). Sometimes it takes a stern rock of the blender container for this to happen. If your smoothie to too bubbly, add a bit more ice. If your smoothie is too thick, add a bit more water. Note, consistency will vary a bit based on the size of the fruit and ice cubes, as well as the power of the blender.
Recipe adapted from Cookie and Kate.