When I was a wee sophomore in college, I had the glamorous job of working at the on-campus eatery called The Marketplace. Lucky for me, they stuck me in the desserts bar, where I restocked plates of truffle pie and stacks of chocolate-slab cookies and learned how to fold cloth napkins to look like poinsettias.
But the most important part of my job there was making the smoothies for the students.
Now, I was under strict orders to make the smoothies a certain way–go heavy on the liquid base, skimpy on the frozen fruit, and don’t let anyone take the smoothie leftovers from the bottom of the blender (even though the buffet was supposedly all-you-could-eat).
Did I listen to instructions?
Well, now that I’m no longer under the threat of losing my job due to being too liberal with the fruit, I can proudly say that I did not.
Over the course of the semester, my fame grew to campus-wide proportions (or so I liked to think)–19-year-old freshman boys would memorize my work schedule just so I would be there to make the smoothies for them, since no one else made them as good as I did.
It was from there that I started calling myself The Smoothie Pharaoh, and each hungry college student who came in asking me for three glasses’ worth of smoothies only served to feed my blend-master ego.
So, even though I’ve hoarded my secrets for so long, I have decided to go ahead and share my tricks for perfect smoothies with you. I’ll just say you’re welcome now.
The Perfect Smoothie (every time)
1 cup liquid base (I prefer milk, although fruit juices can be good, too. Just don’t use water–gross!)
1 banana (not browned at all—the perfect banana is all yellow with a slightly green stem. The banana is uber important to the recipe because not only does it give your smoothie a nice taste base, it also lends a thickness to the consistency that’s really hard to come by any other way)
1/2 – 2/3 cup frozen fruit of any kind (I personally like mixed berries) OR the equivalent plus a little extra of fresh fruit (i.e. a fresh peach, 6-7 strawberries, a sliced mango, etc.)
1 8-oz. serving of flavored yogurt (I say flavored because plain yogurt will tend to slightly sour the taste of the whole smoothie. I prefer putting in yogurt that matches whatever fruit I’m already putting in to intensify the flavor. My current favorite is Oikos Triple Zero yogurt.)
1 large handful (about one cup) of spinach (if you haven’t tried spinach in smoothies, trust me–you won’t be able to taste it. It’s about the easiest way known to man to get in your daily vegetables)
Make sure you mix the ingredients VERY thoroughly together. Nothing will spoil your smoothie faster than chunks of banana or frozen fruit at the bottom. I always blend my smoothie for way longer than it would appear to need it.
Servings: 2 (unless you’re a smoothie freak like me, in which case: it serves one)
Note: If you haven’t added any frozen ingredients, I would generally recommend throwing in a handful of ice.