Cherry Vanilla Smoothie, and Seven Random Facts

by Gena on January 15, 2012

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So on Thursday, I mentioned that one of the ways to cut a weekly raw food’s grocery bill is to replace nuts with seeds, and dates with raisins (or prunes), and I gave you a raisin and seed ball recipe in keeping with the theme. Today, I’m here to talk about a purchase that is NOT budget friendly: frozen cherries.

Frozen cherries appear in supermarkets rarely, or so I’ve found. Having never been a fan of cherries until I first tasted my berry, cherry, and PB bliss smoothie, I’ve since come to see them as a very special, very precious treat. Fresh cherries from a farmer’s market in the summer are indulgent enough, and quite costly; frozen cherries in the unseasonal dead of winter are a true, true luxury, and one I only treat myself to rarely.

As it turns out, I did get my hands on a precious frozen bag, right before the Christmas holiday—a little “get through finals” push, if you will. I’ve used it sparingly, so sparingly that I had just about a cup left yesterday morning, when I went to make a smoothie (true to form, I’ve proven that I don’t crave warm foods more in the winter this week with a ton of smoothie breakfasts). I also had some Vega Sport Vanilla protein (a leftover sample from the kind Vega folks), some spinach, and plenty of fresh, homemade almond milk. From that combination, this delicious green smoothie was born.

Cherry Vanilla Smoothie (raw, vegan, gluten & soy free depending on which protein powder you use)

Serves 1

1 heaping cup frozen cherries
1 serving vanilla protein powder (I like Vega or Rainbow Light Protein Energizer)
4 ice cubes
1 heaping cup baby spinach
2 chlorella tablets (optional–just enhances the green power)
1 1/4 cups almond milk

Blend all ingredients together on high. Serve, sip, and bliss out.

This is a perfect “intro” green smoothie because it’s so sweet, and the vanilla makes it reminiscent of a dessert! You won’t taste the greens in this indulgent treat. Try it soon, and let me know what you think.

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Before I go, the lovely Heather (recently featured in Green Recovery) tagged me in a game of 7 random facts. Here are mine!

1) The only vegetables I dislike to the extent that I’ll barely eat them are radishes. So bitter! I’ve never understood the appeal.

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2) You guys have probably heard this one before, but I lived in the same 40 block radius for the first 28 years of my life. True story. My move to DC was the first time I’ve ever left New York for more than a month or two.

3) I studied Latin until the age of 16. Salvete! I don’t remember much, but it comes in handy for crossword puzzles.

4) 80% of my wardrobe was purchased on eBay. For real. This is in part so that I can reduce waste, in part because a lot of the materials in faux leather aren’t environmentally friendly, so I prefer to buy them used, and mostly because I just don’t like spending too much money on clothing. I have zero reservations about wearing used clothes and shoes.

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5) I went to an all girls’ high school. A lot of people who share this history feel traumatized by it, or as though they didn’t have a “real” high school experience. I absolutely loved it. It’s true that I didn’t really socialize with a member of the male gender until I was eighteen, but I’d do it again in a heartbeat, in part because the female friendships I formed were so strong and so important, and because it taught me to value the company of women.

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6) Among the foods I’ve “warmed up to” because I write a food blog are: onions, garlic, eggplant, parsnips, and most fruits aside from bananas and apples. Writing Choosing Raw has broadened my taste buds a lot!

7) My favorite hours of the day are 6 am to 10 am. Everything is so peaceful, so bright, and the day is still so full of promise. I’m a dedicated morning person.

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(source)

I’m not tagging anyone in return, because it’s too hard to pick out recipients, but I invite anyone who reads CR to jump in and pass the game on with seven facts of his or her own!

Back to studying I go. I hope that many of you get tomorrow off, and that you enjoy a lovely long weekend!

xo

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{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

Tamara January 15, 2012 at 3:30 pm

Live for cherries too! I found Superstore here in BC has an organic frozen mix of cherry, blk berry & blueberry. I’ve been stocking up because a part of me believes it’s too good to be true!
Love the 7 facts too!! ;)
T

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Faith M. January 15, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Which all girls school did you attend in NY?

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Gena January 15, 2012 at 3:36 pm

Nightingale Bamford!

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Marissa January 15, 2012 at 3:46 pm

I hate radishes too! And I am a morning person–or at least a morning runner. I am the only person I know personally at school who voluntarily wakes up at 6:45am to run.

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Alexandra January 15, 2012 at 3:48 pm

I’m 15 and I’ve been studying Latin for 1 and 1/2 years now! Plan on finishing High School with 4 Latin Credits!! Like you said, it does help with words; I ace all vocab tests and I knew all the medical terms for Veterinary assisting class before we learned them ;)

I LOVE your blog, by the way! You are an inspiration for me both health-wise (I’m a recovering anorexic) and school-wise (4.4 GPA; I’m a school-a-holic)!

I realized that this is my first comment on your blog, even though I’ve been reading it for over 9 months…. Just thought I’d let you know I appreciate that you take time out of your [very busy] days and post! :)

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Molly January 15, 2012 at 8:17 pm

Go Latin! You should stick with it…I never liked it much in high school and ended up being a Latin major in college. I’m eventually headed to med school and hope it’s going to pay off there, though I’m not so sure…but either way it gets wayyy more fun once you get to read real literature.

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Gena January 16, 2012 at 11:33 pm

Aw, Alexandra, thanks for writing! I am so inspired that you’re recovering AND holding up that GPA. Stick to your recovery, please…you’ll never regret it. And keep reading :)

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bitt January 15, 2012 at 3:54 pm

Ick radishes! Sometimes they taste good stir-fried. I used to have a CSA box and had to use them.

Random fact about me is I never will put ice in my smoothies. Brrr!

You must know your size or be able to guess it well to buy that much online. I have to try things on. I bet it is good for preowned vegan shoes. Never thought to try that.

I used to find that true about frozen cherries, but my Whole Foods here has organic cherries often a dollar cheaper then other organic berries. So I was using them for awhile, then of course it changed. I love cherries too, we ate them by the bagful in Washington state.

You don’t like bananas? I’ve seen them in a lot of your recipes.

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Gena January 15, 2012 at 4:58 pm

No, bananas are my fave fruit ever!! I said “aside from bananas and apples.” I wasn’t even a fan of berries when I started CR; smoothies have really helped in the fruit dept!

I have very true, predictable sizes, usually, but I do have the odd hit or miss. In that case, I re-sell. It’s a great way to be frugal!

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Ali January 15, 2012 at 4:11 pm

I totally agree with you on loving the mornings. I love to get up at 6:30, before anyone else is up and work out. It feels like special me time. I also agree with you on the radish front. To spicy. My dad loves them. I am glad that you treated yourself to those cherries girl, if anyone needs things like that to get you through it is you!!

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Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga January 15, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Frozen cherries are indeed, hard to find. My TJs has them every now and then, not consistently. I have heard the huge warehouse stores like Sams and Costco have them but I don’t go to those. Your smoothie looks great.

I LOVE That you bought 80% of your wardrobe on ebay. That is a great little factoid, too. I buy as many things as I can in thrift and antique and vintage stores for the house and home, dishes, kitchen stuff, etc. I also sold tons and tons of baby/kid stuff on ebay and/or donated, Craigslist, etc. Reduce, reuse, recycle, pass on to others who need it…yes. Great message, Gena!

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Get Skinny, Go Vegan. January 15, 2012 at 4:23 pm

Funny I usually don’t have cherries on hand, but bought a couple frozen bags a bit back, organic. I also tend to try to buy organic and so buy frozen berries. I basically buy whatever is on sale. I am trying the high fruit, low fat thing out, for awhile. And it seems like that may save money. As high quality, organic, and truly raw, nuts can be a budget buster. Bananas, even fair trade, organic, can be cheap, especially if you buy a case and the get 10% discount at Whole Foods.
Today I made smoothies with one pound of cherries and 7 bananas, it was awesome!

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The Delicate Place January 15, 2012 at 4:27 pm

i love the TJs very cherry blend yum! here are some of my random facts:
1. i took 2 years of latin in college
2. i studied in india and new zealand for college credit
3. i went to catholic school from k-9 and had to wear a uniform in 9th grade for the first time. we had a dress code in the early years but it switched just at the peak of teenage insecurity lol
4. every time i get a full scan of xrays at the dentist i gag. like full out coughing, choking gagging. it’s probably the worst 20mins i experience every couple years.
5. i actually really hate cardio and i only do it 2x weekly
6. part of the reason i eat well is so i can exercise less haha
7. i honestly don’t know why i chose to be a scientist…and i’m still unsure if this is my true calling.

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Gena January 16, 2012 at 10:05 am

I’m a cardio whore! But strength training is another story. Ick. Thank god for yoga.

To me, anyone with aptitude in the sciences is a miracle, so I envy the fact that you’ve turned it into a career. That said, no one should have a full time job that doesn’t channel true passion.

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Alyssa January 15, 2012 at 4:33 pm

Cherries are totally my little treat. I often splurge during the summer on fresh ones for me. I have been wanting to get some frozen for something yummy. This might be just that recipe. My husband is not a cherry fan, so I am very pleased to get them all to myself.

I actually really like radishes. I don’t eat them very often but for some really strange reason they are really good sliced thin with vegan butter and bread?

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Aubrey January 15, 2012 at 4:34 pm

This smoothie sounds amazing! Definitly gonna try!

I think that you buy your clothes off ebay is awesome!! Need to figure that out sounds hard! And definitly gonna do facts on my blog;)

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Amy Skretta January 15, 2012 at 6:18 pm

My facts:

1. I took 2.5 years of German. No latin! I also took one year of American Sign Language totally wished I could have made that a part of my career. There’s still time… ;)
2. I read cookbooks like novels. It’s not uncommon for me to download or buy cookbooks and just cozy up and read them.
3. I can only eat greens raw. Soggy, wet greens are not yummy. But I eat them anyway.
4. My fave vegan fare is tempeh bacon reubens.
5. My fave raw food is raw macaroons from Ani Phyo’s cookbook. Omg.
6. I love Zumba.
7. I’m a big fan of DCI: Drum Corps International. It’s a band geek’s dream come true.

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Gena January 16, 2012 at 10:06 am

HA! Love reading your 7 things, Amy. And we’re the same in at least two of them: the cookbook reading, and the greens raw (I can do steamed kale, but NEVER spinach, ew).

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Amy Skretta January 15, 2012 at 6:19 pm

YES to cherries! NO to radishes! I’m with you, Gena.

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Ela January 15, 2012 at 6:36 pm

Morning person too here! With all the gaps in produce offerings up here, I can almost always find frozen cherries–and sometimes in 5lb bags! I adore them in smoothies just as you do.

I went to an all-girl high school too, and oddly, for a long time afterward my only close friends were male!
love
Ela

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Brianne January 15, 2012 at 7:29 pm

Love cherries!! I put them in a lot of my smoothies! I have been finding them at my whole foods for some time now. Not too expensive either! But now I am worried they will disappear! Going to stock up!

I too went to an all girls highschool in NJ. I can’t complain!!

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Ali Seiter January 15, 2012 at 7:44 pm

I wholeheartedly agree with your loathing of radishes and your favorite time of day–I, too, am quite the morning person, much to the disbelief of my friends.

However, I still haven’t warmed up to cherries. Their flavor simply doesn’t mesh with my tastebuds, which is too bad since I live in Wisconsin where cherries are bountifully grown in the northern parts.

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Olivia @ The Olivia Project January 15, 2012 at 8:34 pm

I’m so glad that so many of us have taken Latin! It makes me feel like I’m not the only one. :) Also took four semesters of German and even a couple of semesters learning to read and write ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs!

So many radish haters! Am I the only one that actually likes radishes? Maybe it’s because my parents always used to have them in salads and as crudites in our house when I was growing up.

As usual, all this food talk is making me hungry! Off to make a yummy vegan dinner!

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Laura @ Gluten Free Pantry January 15, 2012 at 10:53 pm

I love cherries and vanilla! I will be making this smoothie this week for sure!

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Christina @ HealthyCosmos January 16, 2012 at 1:16 am

Yum, I absolutely love cherries! That they’re bountiful in summer is truly one of my favorite aspects of the season. (Yes, I love them that much!)

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Anastasia@healthymamainfo.com January 16, 2012 at 1:28 am

Well, I’d better start looking for some frozen cherries! And thanks for sharing random facts. I feel now that I know you better, so I guess I can understand your cooking style better :)

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Ken Dorr January 16, 2012 at 2:06 am

Cherries are so good for us and I enjoy using them from day one when they’re in season. Big fan of the fresh fruit and green smoothies!

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Hannah January 16, 2012 at 3:25 am

Here in Australia, it seems like almost everyone lists mango as their favourite fruit and cherries as their second favourite, yet I’ve never really gone for cherries. That is, until Lisa very sweetly asked that we get some in Melbourne last week, because they were in season and grown here. Changed my mind completely about them, they were so sweet! That Lisa’s a powerful woman ;)

P.S. I kinda wish I’d never left New York until 28. That way, I’d have over three years left to go…

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Sara (The Veggie Eco-Life) January 16, 2012 at 8:56 am

That smoothie sounds delicious! I’m not that into protein powders, so I guess I’m gonna try the smoothie with a personal touch :)
Loved reading 7 random facts about you, it’s a fun way to tell more about yourself!

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elizabeth January 16, 2012 at 10:04 am

I studied both Latin and Greek. I remember some Latin but Greek didn’t “stick” at all.

I’m also an intrepid e-bayer, athough I admit that I only search “new with tags” and I never buy shoes I can’t return. As far as my own wardrobe goes, if I didn’t get it at the Armani outlet, and if it wasn’t a hand-me down from my mother, chances are very good I got it on e-bay.

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Christine (The Raw Project) January 16, 2012 at 11:54 am

I adore frozen cherries too and splurge on the Trader Joe’s Very Cherry frozen berry blend frequently for smoothies. This smoothie looks wonderful, I need to try it soon. And fun facts, agreed on favorite time of the day.

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Natasha January 16, 2012 at 12:36 pm

I just had this for lunch but with frozen strawberries in place of cherries. YUM!

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Brittany@eatingforenlightenment January 16, 2012 at 12:48 pm

Hi Gene,

I’m not sure if you have tried beauty heart radishes yet, but they are amazing. They are not as bitter and are a great crunchy snack alternative, plus they are so beautiful once you cut them open, hence the name beauty heart I guess :)

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Brittany@eatingforenlightenment January 16, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Sorry I mean Gena! :)

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xvavaveganx January 16, 2012 at 1:16 pm

I just went through pretty much all of your archives after being referring here by commenters on my blog! Everything looks so beautiful i can’t wait to start trying your recipes! I’m sick right now and I don’t want to eat anything but then I read this and I want to make it! It will be a perfect way to pack a delicious nutritional punch to help get my sick butt moving again. Thanks! :)

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Drisana (SoulShineBlog) January 17, 2012 at 7:36 am

Once my Mom found very large bags of organic frozen cherries at Costco for under $10 and bought me one – which is when I discovered how much I love frozen cherries, especially in smoothies! Chocolate cherry with hemp protein is one of my favorite combos. Thanks for the recipe!

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Melissa (Be Delicious) January 17, 2012 at 11:40 am

Would that happen to be a “Strawsome” straw in that smoothie? I’m in the market, as it were. Any suggestions for glass straws anyone?

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Amanda @ AmandaRunsNY January 17, 2012 at 12:44 pm

I love frozen cherries and my mornings too. i wake up at 5 a.m. most days. :) And even though I exercise in the mornings, that’s almost 2 hours before I actually workout most days.

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Amanda B. January 17, 2012 at 2:27 pm

Weird, frozen cherries are always in my supermarket. They’re not super cheap, but they’re on par with any of the frozen berries I can get. I have noticed that frozen peaches are cheaper though.

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Tt in nyc January 17, 2012 at 8:42 pm

To all the radish haters here… Try them roasted. A little coconut oil/olive oil, salt and pepper roasted in the oven completly gets rid of any bitterness and the flavor changes completly. Its ok to not like a vegetable, (rutabegs and i have tried to work things out but, well, its just not happening) but dont give up on radishes until you roast them :)

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Kaitlyn@TheTieDyeFiles January 18, 2012 at 8:42 pm

The boyfriend bought some fresh cherries over the weekend and left them here. I’m definitely using them in tomorrow’s smoothie!

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Rita January 27, 2012 at 4:26 pm

Wow!! I bought frozen cherries last week after thinking this smoothie sounded delicious. Well I made it today and it was amazing!! It tasted like vanilla cake or something….perfect. It was more like a treat than anything else.

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