I love the feeling of a recipe developing in my mind. A little bit of this, a pinch of that–I can almost taste the combinations as I think them. They say if you imagine a yoga routine step by step in your head, you get a good fraction as flexible and calm as if you go through the poses with your actual body. Since I adore cooking and do its motions so much, when a recipe from my head comes into existence, the tastes and textures ordinarily resemble my unwritten, unmade version. Sometimes, though, the dishes come up short, like a lentil salad I made the other day to go with some crispy hake, where the lentils got overcooked and the toasted pine nuts didn’t add enough crunch to balance out the mush, and also the hake was barely crispy.
Sometimes, the actual preparation surpasses the fantasy, and that’s what happened with this breakfast shake, which I believed would taste like almonds, apples, and cinnamon and instead tasted like candy.
Candy! For breakfast! But I’m not actually talking Peeps and Peanut Butter Eggs.This is a drink whose added sugar content comes from a single teaspoon of honey and then just makes the most of all the natural sweetness of almonds, apples, ripe banana, and honey.
I’m not usually too adventurous with my smoothies. I like berries, bananas, milk, and peanut butter. Then, one day, I watched as my friend ordered a smoothie with apple in it at the juice place up the street. The juice guy put a whole apple in a blender and pulverized the fruit into sweet submission. I tried a little bit of the extra, and the apple, skin and all, tasted like fresh, creamy apple juice. This candy-like apple cinnamon smoothie is the only way that I can eat apple skin. Anyway, if you’re looking to shake up your smoothie routine (ha!) this one’s for you – why not drink that apple a day? Almonds–both in the milk and the butter–are the perfect complements.
Apple-Cinnamon & Almond Smoothie
Serves 1, easily doubled
If you store your about-to-be-too-ripe bananas in the freezer, you can omit the ice cube. Also, you’ll really want a high-powered blender, like a Vitamix, to pulverize the skin of the apple. If you don’t have one, I’d recommend peeling the apple when you core it.
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, plus more for garnish
1 sweet apple, cored (I like Fuji), skin left on if you’ve got a powerful blender
half of a ripe banana
1 teaspoon honey, preferably raw
2/3 – 3/4 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze Almond Milk
1 tablespoon creamy roasted almond butter
1 ice cube
1/2 teaspoon chia seeds
Combine the cinnamon, apple, banana, honey, 2/3 cup almond milk, and almond butter in a high-powered blender. Blend, starting on low and moving to high, for 2 minutes, or until all the grit of the apple is smooth.
Add the ice cube and the chia and blend again. Add a little more of the almond milk if you like your smoothie on the milky side. Serve, sprinkled with cinnamon.
This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that keep Big Girls, Small Kitchen delicious!