Thursday, November 13, 2008

Smoothie Move

It all started with my first visit to Costco, which opened not long ago in Sapporo. Imagine, if you will, a store with spacious aisles, spacious shopping carts, and huge piles of cheaply-priced items that can't be found in one's local supermarket. Well, I suppose for most Americans, that doesn't take much imagination, but it's extremely rare in Sapporo.

I went with a friend who has a membership, and filled up his basket with cheese and corn bread mix and Perrier. (Of course, I paid.) I also found a huge bag of mixed frozen fruit (mangoes, papaya, pineapple, and strawberries) that I could barely squeeze into my freezer.

Of course, then I wanted to make smoothies. I’ve missed them so much, although they’ve just started getting popular in Japan. So I just had to buy a juicer. Juicers have also only recently gotten popular in Japan, so I was surprised at the variety I had to choose from, but got a fairly inexpensive, standard model, which is actually a simple blender.

I figured making a smoothie would be a cinch - just throw in some frozen fruit and a bit of low-fat yogurt, and mix. Well, it tasted all right, but it wasn't smooth!

Later I tried one that included a cup of vanilla soy milk, a cup and a half of the frozen fruit, and a half a banana. The texture and sweetness were for that were just about right.

Also, I figured out that it works better to put the milk in first and the pieces of fruit in one at a time. I knew there was some reason for the cylinder in the middle with the hole in the cover! I'm kind of a slow learner when it comes to anything involving ”cooking.“

There are some recipes in Japanese that came with the juicer, and I suppose I could check those out. I notice they have Chinese characters for something like “angle ice,” which I think means ice cubes, although frozen fruit seems to do quite well. Eventually I might add some sort of nutritious powder or the like so that the smoothie could even be considered a meal.

Advice or RECIPES for smoothies are welcome!

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