I realised I should probably mention something. I hate banana. As in I can’t smell or eat it without feeling sick. So none of my smoothie recipes will include banana. Some of the original recipes will, and then I’ll mention that (if I can remember it!) but I’ll just exclude it from my versions.
Anyway, on to this post’s recipe. I think this is my favourite smoothie so far (I know that’s only out of a few), probably because it’s most similar to the ones I used to make. Between high school and university I had a two year gap (one was planned, the other because I changed my mind about what I wanted to study) and for one of these years I worked as a nanny. I spent four months in Italy, two in Canada, and six in Switzerland, and the months in Italy and Switzerland were, to be polite, not too kind to my butt and mid-section. A summer in Italy with pizza, pasta, ice-cream and wine followed by the Swiss’ love for chocolate and carbohydrate heavy food left me a bit rounder and softer than I liked to be, so when I came back home to Sweden and got a job in a shop I decided to do something about it.
My first step was to start making smoothies for breakfast and cycle to work when the weather was good enough (sound familiar?). Though at that time I wasn’t as organised as I am now. I didn’t have any recipes, so most days the smoothies were just the same mix of milk and frozen red berries. I also didn’t weigh anything or count calories.
It did work though, and when I went to Australia after six months at home I felt better than I had in a while. (Then university and a stressful London job happened, but that’s a different story.)
Anyway, this really is a simple smoothie, and it’s good because the berries are frozen. Many of the other recipes I have call for fresh fruit and berries, which means that they won’t last as long and you can’t buy them as far in advance. Frozen berries you can keep at home all the time, and if you cut out the quark all you need is milk – which is also a staple food most people have at home. Doing so will take away the benefit of added protein though, and some of the creaminess of the texture.
Ingredients (1 portion)
200 ml frozen mixed berries
200 ml milk
125 g quark or natural yogurt
Again, all you need to do is toss it in a blender and mix it up.
The calorie count on my version (115 g berries and skimmed milk) came to 259 kcal. If you want a smaller smoothie you can halve the amount of berries and milk, which would cut the calories by about 50 kcal.
I found this to be just runny enough, but if you want a thicker – maybe even spoonable – version you can either add more berries or cut down on the milk.