Sunday, June 30, 2013

Kefir Smoothies

Our general morning breakfast includes kefir smoothies. The kiddos love them and I know they are getting a great boost right when they need it. The best part is that whatever fresh fruit I have that's  frozen I can throw right in, and every now and then I add some spinach for an extra boost. I don't juice just plain and simple due to cost and the clean up aspect of it. I love fresh juices but I rarely have the time in the morning to go through all the hassle of bringing stuff out. These allow me to add all my stuff and have it ready in 5-10 minutes. 

For those of you that don't know what kefir is I really encourage you to go research it. The reason I started was I saw my sister in law making it on her counter and got curious as to whether it really was "all that". So I went home and l looked it up, pros and cons, what it was and why it's beneficial. I found very few cons, which always makes me more interested, so I decided to give it a try. I use actual kefir grains I bought off Amazon from a trusted buyer (I love that I can check reviews) and started out. Being you can buy it in a store pre made seems like the way to go BUT in researching found that the quality of that kefir is so low that you can't use that kefir to make a new batch. Kefir is like yogurt in the fact that it's a culture so you should theoretically be able to do that. You can do it with my fresh stuff just not the store bought. SO I now make kefir daily to use in my smoothies. I know where all the ingredients come from being we try to be less processed in what we eat, AND I know that I don't add anything I don't trust. 

Unfortunately I am horrid at measuring anything. All my food comes out slightly different than the last. I go by smell, taste and what I am in the mood for usually. Most of my kefir shakes though consist of 4 cups kefir (almost always the same because that's how much I make at a time), 1- 24 oz. container of Greek God's Greek yogurt (the only one my family really loves) then about 1/4 - 1/2 c. raw local honey.  Then I run that until the honey is fully mixed since next I fill the blender to the top with frozen fruit of choice. This picture was strawberry and banana that was going to go bad if not used. That's it... Mix and serve. 

My family loves these smoothies and has them almost every breakfast before school. Last year was horrid for colds and the flu, we did shakes, Greek yogurt on days without shakes, vitamin D (just during winter months when we aren't outside as much) and managed to make it through with just a few days of light sniffles. I do have to add I don't let my kids use antibacterial hand sanitizer from school also. I tell them to just politely ask if they can wash their hands. Some days I sent some I made with them so they could just "use their own" but most times the kids just washed their hands. 

If you are interested in more information about starting kefir or benefits of water/milk kefir I highly suggest checking out the links to healthy cultures in my "favorite links" area. Also I encourage anyone that was or is as reluctant as me to using raw local honey to talk w/ different local bee keepers in your area. I have learned a lot about raw honey from conversations with them and found it interesting to do that and then do more research from there. 

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