When we turn the calendar to August I find myself wanting time to s-l-o-w d-o-w-n. As much as I love our northeastern seasonal changes I can’t help thoroughly enjoying the tropical feel of the summer days. One of our favorite seasonal blends is the Tropical Smoothie. It’s a sweet, savory blend of flavors mixed with a few cooking lessons for children to learn as they work through the process. It’s a quick and easy recipe with steps that allow children of all ages to participate for some summer vacation fun in the kitchen. This recipe allows your family to catch the wave of our short-lived northeast tropics, but yields a cool down affect as you sip your creation when it’s all blended and ready to serve.
Tropical Smoothie by Jodie Fitz
1 cup coconut milk, vanilla
6 oz. pineapple juice
6 oz. vanilla yogurt
3 cups ice
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Peel and slice the banana. Cut the mango and remove the skin. Add the coconut milk, pineapple juice, yogurt, ice, banana, mango, honey and vanilla extract into a blender and mix thoroughly.
Makes approximately four 8 oz. servings.
HOW TO CUT A MANGO: The mango has a large seed in the center. Using a sharp knife, an adult can slice the sides off on either side of the nut, which is typically the widest side starting at the top of the stem. If the mango is ripe, children can use a plastic knife to cut squares into the cut sides. I like to tell them it’s like drawing a ‘tic tac toe’ board but with more lines; a grid of sorts. Then, they can scoop out the cubes of mango with a spoon.
IS MY MANGO RIPE? Making this smoothie provides a great opportunity in teaching children about how to tell when a mango is ripe or not. Is it soft or hard? If you can press on the fruit and feel its softness, it is ripe and ready to make the Tropical Smoothie. If it’s hard, it’s not ready and needs to sit for another day or two.
COCONUT MILK: There are a couple of different coconut milk options that you can find in the supermarket. I personally use the Silk brand vanilla flavored coconut milk when making this smoothie.
LITTLE HELPERS: Even the little kitchen helpers can assist in peeling and slicing the banana. They can easily cut up the banana by using a child’s safety knife or a plastic butter knife.
HALF BANANA: What do you do with the other half of the banana? Eat it! Or, cover it with waxed paper and save it for another Sun’s Up Smoothie.
Disclosure: I am pleased to be working with MVP Health Care and the MVP Generation Go Program, which has sponsored this post. My participation is voluntary and my opinion is always my own, as is any advice offered.