It is just the beginning of apple season here in Upstate NY. I know that a lot of people think only of the city when they hear the words “New York”, but here where we live, there are way more cows than there are people, and LOTS of apples.
NY is the second largest producer of apples in the United States, and we live just on the edge of the Finger Lakes, which is the most prolific apple growing part of the state.
So – we got apples! There will no doubt be plenty of apple recipes appearing here over the next couple of months but when I got my hands on the first fresh apples from this year, I could only think of making this smoothie. It makes sense to start out with breakfast, right?
I nearly always put ginger in whatever smoothies I am making. I love the flavor, and ginger is one of the best things you can have in your diet to reduce inflammation. I know I notice a big difference in how I feel if I run out of ginger for more than a couple days.
Try to find organic if you can, and look for plump, good sized pieces when you are choosing the ones to buy. Obviously, there should not be any damp spots or mold. Fortunately, the quality of the fresh ginger in the produce section has improved greatly from what it was just a few years ago. I store mine in a small paper bag in the veggie bin of the fridge.
It is important to know that if your body isn’t used to it, too much ginger can upset your stomach, so you might want to use a little less if you have a sensitive stomach. Also, it can interact with medications that regulate blood thinning, blood pressure, and blood sugar, so if you take those, you should check with your doctor. On the other hand, if you are into natural medicines, ginger can eliminate the need for those kinds of drugs, so you may want to explore the possibility of substituting ginger in your diet for them, at least in part. I think it would take a lot more than you find in this recipe to make any difference, but you should be aware of the possibility of interactions.
The flavors of apple and ginger go together very well, and though this green smoothie has quite a lot of spinach in it, you can’t really taste it at all. The flax seeds are really good for you too, and I love the almost nutty flavor they impart. The only other two ingredients are Greek yogurt, and raw milk, if you can find it, other full fat organic milk if you can’t. Vegans, I am sure, can figure out their own preferred substitutions for the dairy.
- 1 medium apple, washed, cored and cut into quarters
- a big handful of fresh spinach leaves, about ½ cup
- a 1 inch long piece of ginger [1/2 to 1 ounce], peeled
- 1 tablespoon golden flax seeds
- ⅓ cup Greek yogurt [any kind that you like]
- 1 cup milk, preferably raw, full fat [you can sub in other milk if you prefer]
- Place all ingredients in a high speed blender or *smoothie maker, and process until very smooth. I prefer to just add a couple ice cubes to the glass before drinking, but you can add a few cubes along with the other ingredients if you like.
- Serve immediately. Leftovers should be refrigerated, but it is best to drink a smoothie right away to get the best use of the nutrients.
Ah – my favorite way to begin any day!
*My favorite smoothie maker is my Nutribullet.
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Donalyn/The Creekside Cook