Category Archives: drink

homemade mango lassi

We are smoothie junkies around here, so I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me sooner that we could make mango lassis at home. It also didn’t occur to me that they are healthier than they taste. Instead of yogurt and milk, I like to replace some of the dairy with light coconut milk.

mango lassi
Makes a 1-3/4 cup serving.

Per person blend:

1 mango, peeled and chopped
1/3 cup lowfat plain yogurt
2 tablespoons light coconut milk
1/4 – 1/2 cup cold water
1 teaspoon sugar or honey
a generous pinch of salt
a dash of cardamom

Optional: sprinkle with pistachios and drink through a colorful straw.

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Bring me a shrubbery: drinking vinegars in the modern age

Drinking vinegars have been trendy in Asia for years. The colonial version (“shrub”) was popular in the U.S. two hundred years ago but fell out of favor. In recent years, the humble shrub has been enjoying new popularity in the Slow Food movement, apothecary-style cocktails and the foodie world. Shrub is a fruit-infused, vinegar-based syrup that is usually mixed into soda water for a refreshing, non-alcoholic beverage. You can buy drinking vinegars commercially, but of course, it’s fun and easy to make your own. We made cherry shrub back in August. We have another blackberry shrub developing in the cupboard, and I hope we can put together a few more with our freezer full of fruit because I’ve become strangely obsessed with drinking vinegars.

Shrubs change over time as the flavors develop, and the cherry shrub has reached a state of delicious perfection. The vinegar mellowed a little, the fruit flavor shines and it’s not overly sweet. It’s simple to make a beverage.

Add soda water to shrub.

Stir to combine.

We went to Portland last weekend for Krista’s birthday and ate at Pok Pok, a restaurant known for their vinegars. We ordered the rhubarb and raspberry flavors. They were both really delicious in the puckery-sweet way you’d expect.

We also brought home a bottle of the tamarind flavor, sold as a bottled concentrate. We haven’t opened it yet, but I have high hopes.

xoxo,
Jess

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Filed under drink, fall

carrot-nectarine smoothie

This is the week I discovered that a whole, perfectly ripe nectarine is a revelation in a smoothie. I’m also on a carrot juice bender, so this smoothie was inevitable.

Even the chickens are getting to enjoy all the carrot juice we have been drinking by gobbling up the leftover carrot pulp.

carrot-nectarine smoothie

per person:

one frozen banana, chopped
one ripe nectarine, halved and pitted, skins on
3/4 cup carrot juice
thin slices of peeled ginger, to taste

Blend until smooth.

If you are juicing carrots at home, you can juice the ginger with the carrots. Either way, just use a hint of ginger so it doesn’t overpower the nectarine and carrot flavors.

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the mocha puff

During our hour-plus drive to Seattle the other day we stopped on a whim at Metronome Coffee in Tacoma for some much needed caffeine and hopefully a decent cappuccino.

The decor is sleek with white tile, Edison light bulbs, and a pretty grey espresso machine. As we ordered our drinks we noticed something listed with a few other beverages called a mocha puff. When the barista explained it was cocoa puffs with two shots of espresso, I decided we had to try one. After all, we wouldn’t make it to brunch until well after noon. A bowl of cocoa puffs split two ways would be perfect, as would an extra shot of espresso for each of us.


Cocoa Puffs + milk + two shots of espresso

Oh, and not to forget the best part: you get a glass of ice for the leftover milk and espresso that has absorbed the chocolaty sweetness of the cereal.

Turns out it tastes exactly as you would expect – like that milk you loved to slurp from the bottom of your bowl with the added awesomeness of espresso. Cereal milk for grown-ups. Thumbs up from us both.

And while we were in Tacoma, we swung by the famous coffee pot shaped building.

Some would argue Bob’s Java Jive is actually shaped like a tea pot, but either way it’s incredible it has remained standing for more than eighty years at this point. You would think you could drive-through for a latte, but this place has been a dive bar/music venue for ages.


This post is best accompanied by the Ink Spots song the Java Jive was named after back in the fifties. Enjoy!

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