Joy the Baker is awesome. If you've never been to her blog, you should check it out. She just released a cookbook and to break it in, I'm going to do a series of posts about it.
I've actually been baking quite a bit recently. I made my mom Chocolate-Butterscotch Brownies to take in to her classroom. I made my dad an Apple-Raisin Pie because he put in a request. But those posts will have to wait. Because this week is Joy the Baker Appreciation Week. JtBAW, for short. (Ok, let's not actually call it JtBAW.)
Last year, one of my bosses at the Brooks Center told me I should check out Joy's website, and I've been hooked ever since. She has a quirky personality, and a very familiar way of writing that draws you in. I feel like we're old friends, even though we've never met. (Although that will totally change when I go to her book signing in Brooklyn at the end of the month!) She's the one who got me into collecting random plates and dishes. I sent her an e-mail when I started my collection, and she even responded! She's that cool.
To start off this series, I made something a little out of my comfort zone. Not preparation-wise, but out of my eating comfort zone. I made a Kale-Spinach-Banana-Peanut Butter Smoothie. I know, it sounds scary. Let me share the recipe, and then we'll discuss.
1 heaping cup of chopped kale leaves
1 heaping cup of spinach leaves
1 1/2 C. skim milk (or soy or almond milk for a vegan option)
1 frozen banana, cut into chunks
2 tsp. honey
1 Tbsp. natural creamy peanut butter
- Remove kale leaves from the center stalk and roughly chop. Clean spinach leaves and remove any thick stalks.
- In a blender, blend together the kale, spinach, and milk until no large chunks of leaf remain, about 45 seconds. Stop the blender and add the banana, honey, and peanut butter. Blend until thoroughly combined. Drink right away.
So the taste is much more pleasant than I expected. The predominant flavors are the peanut butter and banana. It doesn't taste salad-y at all, which is what I expected. My problem is with the texture. The little leaf bits are a little too... leafy... for me. I blended it for a good couple of minutes, but maybe a little longer would help. I don't know.... I drank it all though, and it does taste great. I'll have to either play with it to get it smoother, or just get used to it. I have a ton of spinach and kale now, so I've got to make more!
So there you have it. We kicked off Joy the Baker Appreciation Week with something super healthy! Make sure to check out Joy's blog. She also has a couple of podcasts available on iTunes. The first is just the Joy the Baker podcast with Tracy from shutterbean. (If Tracy ever releases a cookbook, that's a whole other appreciation week.) This is the one I listen to (although I'll admit I'm a few weeks behind). They actually rarely talk about baking/cooking, and it's pretty girly most of the time, but they're hilarious together. She also has one called We're About to be Friends. I haven't checked this one out yet, since I'm horrible at keeping up with podcasts. I'm sure I will one day, though!