Fall Smoothies, And Where Should We Go?

M and I are in the middle of planing our little fall getaway. We’re trying to decide whether we should just go north: Inverness, Bolinas, Point Reyes in search of delicious oysters and gorgeous views, or go down south, looking for warmer weather, and finally organize our fall picnic, we’ve been talking so much about. We usually hate planning, we just hop into the car and get on the road, but this time our getaway will be very short, so any ideas???

In the mean time, we’ve been also playing around with smoothies, a lot. Since our CSA boxes have been overflowing with apples, pears, carrots and oranges, more than we could ever eat, we decided to give our healthy summer sippers a little seasonal update.
So here are our three favorite recipes: carrot-apple for our nagging sweet tooth, spicy pear-orange for heat and energy, and heart healthy pomegranate-orange smoothie.

 

 

Carrot-apple smoothie is my healthy sugar fix. I usually use 2 small purple carrots, 1 apple, plum and freshly squeezed orange juice or cantaloupe, if available. Blend everything with plenty of ice until smooth. And, if I still want some extra fiber I also add flax seed.

 

 

Spicy pear-orange smoothie is my pick-me-up concoction. I mix pear with freshly squeezed orange juice and spice things up with a Thai pepper. I usually just use half of it, as it has a really strong “kick” to it. Blend everything with ice and enjoy it’s fiery flavor.

And just in case you missed it, here is the fall smoothie #1, pomegranate-orange:

 

enjoy!

Welcome Autumn

Fall is finally here, and I couldn’t be happier. I know it means, that winter is just around the corner, but if you live or ever been to San Francisco, you will know, it’s the time, when we get to enjoy our summer. We still get all the bounty of the harvest season and long awaited, gorgeous, warm weather. Life is beautiful and it makes me want to drag all of my friends to a fall picnic, eat lots of apples, pears and pomegranates. Indulge on sweetness of dates,figs and persimmons. Photograph even more, listen to Kate Bush. Take long strolls around the city and stop by any cafe, that has patio seating.
So, what are you doing this first fall weekend? Are you going to celebrate the season? Are you cooking anything special, making your fall-to-do list???

There is lots of yoga on my list, and as a reward some delicious smoothies.
I’m leaving you for the weekend with this pomegranate-orange smoothie recipe, it’s so easy to make and it couldn’t be more nutritious. Did you know that pomegranates are packed with fiber, vitamin C and lots of antioxidants? They are so good for your heart. Their season is just starting now, so head over to the farmers’ market this Saturday.

To prepare Pomegranate-Orange smoothie you will need:
*seeds of 4 pomegranates, free of any yellow pith, it has really bitter taste, click here for instructions
*freshly squeezed juice of one orange
*blender
Process pomegranate seeds with orange juice and some ice in the blender until smooth. Divide between two glasses and enjoy!

Have a beautiful weekend!

Banana Pecan Engagement Muffins

I’m sure your hear stories of someone getting engaged over muffins every day.
And you patiently sit there and listen to her describing: how it was typical San Francisco’s cold and foggy morning, and how she missed her trip to the farmers’ market, and how she needed some comforting, so she put two pairs of socks and thick sweats on, and how she decided to make their favorite breakfast: banana-pecan muffins, and how he was making coffee, and how she was mixing and toasting and mashing, and how he was suspiciously weird and nervous that morning, and how she was reaching for a baking powder and grabbed some tiny box instead…
and you can only imagine what happened next…pecans got toasted to a carbon black, the dough got over-mixed and muffins turned out dense and over-baked, but… delicious, best she’d ever had!
And you still sit there with a big smile on your face wondering…if there are any muffins left???
So, I’ll spare you all the sappy details and just share this delicious recipe instead.

Banana Pecan Muffins
adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini blog

1 C sugar
1 egg
1/2 C unsalted butter
2 large ripe bananas
1/4 C milk
2 C all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1tsp salt
1Tbsp vanilla extract
1 C pecans, toasted and chopped

Preheat the oven to 360F, and grease muffin pan or line them with baking cups.

In a large mixing-bowl or in a food processor, cream together the sugar, the egg, vanilla extract and butter. In a small bowl, mash together bananas with milk. In another separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in three parts, alternating with banana-milk mixture in two parts, stirring with spatula until just combined (don’t overmix or your muffins will be a little dense). Stir in the pecans.

Pour the batter into the muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes, or until the muffins are nicely golden-brown. Allow to cool for a few minutes then transfer onto a rack.

They taste delicious with whipped butter, lemon curd or honey.