Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Taste, and See: Iron Banana Milk

Usually I share smoothies because they are simple, creative, and they can standalone as a meal.

Today, however, I would like to share another power punch habit: nut and seed milk.

We have a three-course breakfast every morning at our house. First we have fruit; next, hot or cold cereal, or chia pudding; and lastly we have some variation of a "bread" and "stew".

Typically, we will have a "milk" on our cereal. My mom and I get pretty fancy when it comes to these milks. We just throw together some combination of nuts, seeds, and sometimes grains; blend them together; and serve. We sometimes add cardamon, ginger, anise, or vanilla, lemon zest / extract, and almond essence.

Nut milks provide protein, iron, and calcium (though in minimal amounts). And it is much easier for your to digest and assimilate these goods because the nuts and seeds are ground and, in essence, taken with water.

The following recipe is made completely from seeds, which means that those with nut allergies can partake, too. It is also naturally sweet: the ripe banana adds a gentle sweetness that is low glycemic. But do not fear -the banana flavor is faint.

Iron Banana Milk (Yields 2.5 cups of milk)
1/4 cup of pumpkin seeds
2 tablespoons of flaxseed
1/4 cup of sesame seeds
4 heaping tablespoons of hemp seeds
1.5 cups of water
1 ripe banana
1 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice
1/2 of lemon extract (may also use lemon zest, to taste)

Blend the seeds with 1 cup of water until smooth. Break the banana into about five chunks; add them to the blender with the lemon juice, the extract or zest, and the remaining 1/2 cup of water. Blend till smooth. Serve same day.

A neat thing to do if you have leftover seed milk is to make a sweet cracker! For example, if you have 1 cup or so of leftover milk:

Scrape the one cup of milk into a clean mixing bowl. Optionally, 1/4 cup of liquid sweetener. Add two cups of whole wheat pastry flour and combine well; but do not over mix. Press onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. (Or an oiled one. Parchment is just easier to clean up.) If you would like, sprinkle toasted nuts or seeds, or raw sliced almonds, and sprinkled two tablespoons of sugar on top. Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about twenty minutes. Let cool and set before eating. Yummy!

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