Green Monster

Monsters Can Be Bad

My husband and I are two very different kinds of cooks. He’s happiest, most successful, and most relaxed when winging it in the kitchen. Following a recipe, which he does more often than not, lately, seems to cramp his style a bit, even though it yields some lovely surprises: we needed the goading of a recipe to go out and buy Za’atar ingredients. God bless Paula Wolfert and her beautiful, informative cookbooks.

At the other end of the cookbook tether: I am slave to the recipe. There is only one cooking area in which I am comfortable winging it, and that’s with biscotti recipes. I’ve followed enough of them that there are a few parts of the standard flow that I like to monkey with (namely the spices, sugars, and dried fruits).  I’m afraid to mess with a recipe-crafter’s brilliance, most of the time. My skill is in choosing the recipes.

This rule will remain in effect for some time longer, due to this morning’s smoothie. It appears that I have more to learn about what types of flavors can be married.

Recent posts on this site may tell you that I’ve been experimenting with breakfasts. This is mainly due to a desire for more variety, and it’s been inspired by both plant-based and “paleo” diets – as both tend to shun the very breakfast foods that are currently boring my palate to death. Also, I’m looking to clear up some red skin and possibly lose some weight – so those shunned foods (refined grains and sugars, and some animal-based foods) are taking a double hit, as they evidently can be linked to problem skin and mixing things up can be effective with weight loss.

New to the list of reasons to change up breakfasts: a desire to find a better source for calcium than the supplements I’ve been taking daily for several years now. Recently, the not-so-surprising news that yet another isolated nutrient supplement isn’t as advisable as we thought came out. As I don’t consume much dairy, I’ve been looking for other sources. Big surprise: calcium is huge in greens.

Lately I’ve found that they can be tasty, and sometimes conveniently invisible, in smoothies.

Hence the romaine smoothie above.

Hidden in that brilliant green hue (it’s one of my favorite colors), what you can’t necessarily see are the other calcium-rich ingredients I threw in. The whole orange, the almond milk. And the item that sent the drink from somewhat tasty to downright vile: a tablespoon or two of blackstrap molasses.

So, I’m going back to the internet drawing board, seeking recipes that at least one person liked enough to share. Regardless of whether the media and medical research find supporting or conflicting evidence about calcium supplements in coming years, there are plenty of other reasons to get more colorful, more more whole, foods into my diet.


5 thoughts on “Greedy

  1. That is my problem exactly! I don’t follow a recipe which sometimes works and sometimes is terrible. Especially in baking…. I need to learn to follow recipes! :)

    • Arah says:

      I think baking is pickier than other methods. The chemistry seems more mysterious, maybe due to that dark time your dish spends in the oven. I have one friend who dislikes baking because she can’t keep herself from personalizing the recipes. Good luck!

  2. Arah says:

    I got collards working, with pineapple & coconut milk. It’s almost yummy: needs rum. Greena Colada!

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