Triple Berry Orange Banana Smoothie

triple berry orange banana smoothieWant an easy way to get the most out of your fruit?  Try a smoothie!

Smoothies are a quick, easy and delicious way to get in the daily vitamins that you need.

Here’s one of my favorites: Triple Berry Orange Banana smoothie.  It’s loaded with powerful health boosting antioxidants and guess what, Moms, it will be a real hit with the kids!

Triple Berry Orange Banana Smoothie RECIPE:

Ingredients –

1 ½ cups orange juice (unsweetened)

1 cup mixed berries (frozen or fresh)

2 medium sized bananas (broken into large pieces)

METHOD
– Add all ingredients to your food processor or blender and blend on high till smooth.

– Serve and enjoy!

Ginger Tea

Ginger Tea – Where to Buy?

Ginger Tea can be found at local supermarkets in Trinidad.

The brand featured in my photo below (Good N Natural) is the brand I currently use in my cooking and is by no means an endorsement.  I will continue to scope the market to see if I can find something better.

It can be found at both Tru Valu ($16.09TT) and Hi-Lo Foodstores ($17.29TT)
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Passion Fruit and Ginger Iced-Tea

passion fruit and ginger iced teaHere’s a great refreshing drink for those hot, sunny days.

Not too sweet with just the right bite with ginger, this one is sure to please.

ENJOY!

Passion Fruit and Ginger Iced-Tea Recipe:

1 14oz. pack Passion Fruit Puree (frozen) click here to see where to buy

2 packs Ginger Tea (No Sugar Added) click here to see where to buy

4 cups water

1 ½ cups brown sugar

METHOD:

– In a saucepan, bring to boil passion fruit puree and water.  When this has begun to boil turn off heat

– Add sugar and ginger tea, stir well

– Let cool completely

– Once the mixture has cooled, strain into serving jug

– Serve with crushed ice and enjoy!

Super Simple Pineapple Salsa (a.k.a Pineapple Chow)

pineapple salsa aka chowTrinidadians are famous for making a chow (salsa) out of almost any fruit – Plum Chow, Mango Chow, and now a recent favorite – Pineapple Chow.

Now I have to admit,  even though Pineapple is my favorite fruit I was a little bit skeptical when I saw that it met its ultimate fate in the Trini palate as a Chow.  But, as they say, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it, right?

So, I decided to make my own version, without the heavy dose of pepper sauce.

The result?

I was wowed!  I couldn’t believe it tasted so good.

So, without further ado, here’s my super simple (and super mild) Pineapple Chow recipe.

RECIPE

1 cup chopped fresh pineapple

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

1 pimento pepper, seeded and minced

1 clove garlic, grated

METHOD:

– Add all ingredients to a small bowl

– Stir well to combine

– Serve and enjoy!

TIP: This salsa/chow could also work well as a topping to your favorite

burger recipe.

Comparison Shopping – Where to Buy?

Generally, one may think of comparison shopping as going from store to store to see which items are cheaper and then making a purchase.  Proper comparison shopping, however, goes way deeper than that.  It serves to inform the consumer where to go to get the most out of their money by taking into consideration several factors.

Here are some comparison shopping tips to help you get the most out of your shopping experience and your wallet!

1. Affordability – after all, you wouldn’t want to have to break the bank in order to shop at that store.  Ask yourself “Can I really afford this”, “Would I be breaking my budget”

2.  Location – if the money you think you’re saving is heading straight into the gas tank then you will probably have to reconsider if that supermarket, grocery store or shopper’s club is right for you.  Let’s say you live in Diego Martin but heard about this really cheap store in San Fernando, would this really be cost effective on a regular basis?  I don’t think so.

3.  Convenience – “is it close to work”, “Can I get to this store on the way to pick up the kids from school”,  “Can I get there easily if I don’t have access to a vehicle”.  Let’s say I live in Diego Martin but work in San Fernando and that really cheap store my friend was telling me about is a short distance away from work.  I can stop at that store after work before heading home.  Now that’s convenient!  Also, if you’ve made a purchase and discover you have a faulty product then it will be nice to know that they’re about 20 minutes away from where you live or a place you frequent and not one hour and a half.  If the store is not a convenient place to shop then it will most likely discourage you from going back to get an exchange or refund.

4.  Varietyhow many of your shopping items can you find in that store?  Even if you only have a few items on your list, if you wish to try something new can that store offer you that variety?  

5.  Membership or Shopper’s card – this helps you to save money in the long run.  Hi-Lo Foodstores, for example, is famous for their Smart Shopper’s Card where a consumer can rack up points (double points on Wednesdays) and be rewarded in the end.  However, while TruValu does not have a direct shopper’s card (anymore), having a MAGNA rewards card also allows you to rack up points at participating grocery stores including TruValu.  And get this, because TruValu is more affordable than Hi-Lo, when you use your MAGNA rewards card you can get even more savings.  

6.  Overall Shopping Experience – Do you feel welcome at that particular store?  Are the staff members friendly or polite?  If there is a problem, is it easy to contact the floor manager, etc.?  Is the store generally clean?  Do they make attempts to enhance the shopping experience for the customer?

Shopping – even for groceries – ought to be a pleasurable experience, not a headache.

So the next time you’re out shopping, take these tips into consideration to ensure you have the best shopping experience possible.

3 Essential Tips – How to Make Your Vegetables Flavorful

Tired of bland, boring, mushy vegetables?

Discover these 3 Essential Tips on how to make your vegetables flavorful.

1. Seasonings – like you would your meat

I’m serious.  You wouldn’t just throw a slab of steak on the grill and cook it without seasoning it, right?  Exactly!  You don’t want to cook your vegetables without at least adding some type of seasoning to it.

What type of herbs to use?

The great thing about vegetables is that it works well with almost any type of seasoning whether fresh or dried.

Here in the Caribbean, we have an abundance of rich spices and fresh herbs to choose from.

2. Variety – the more the merrier

Bell Peppers, Carrots, Broccoli, Celery, Eggplant all have distinct flavours.  When combined, it’s a mouthful of flavours.

3. Light cooking – it’s no rump roast

No one likes soggy or mushy vegetables, unless you’re a baby.

When cooking, roasting or grilling your vegetables, one thing to remember is that while you can season it like you would your meats, you don’t have to cook it like meats.  Meats tend to take a longer time on the grill, in the pan or in the oven because of the muscle fibres that have to be broken down and fully cooked.  Unlike meats, vegetables are best when cooked just long enough to enrich the colour and have a nice ‘soft’ crunch.