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Hemp Protein Berry Breakfast Shake (vegan)

Posted Jul 05 2011 9:28am
Hello Friends- It's been a busy few weeks. I hope you are enjoying summer and all of it's benefits. I can't believe that 4th of July has come and gone. For some reason the 4th is always a day I remember...I get all nostalgic and remember the past years events and where we were living and what we were doing. And, what we were eating :) It seems like strawberries, blueberries and cherries are always filling my mind in the summer. I'm infatuated.
The local strawberries have been so red and yummy this year. I went to a friend's farm to pick, plus have bought my fair share at the farmer's market, and even was given a quart from a client's backyard. How sweet! The strawberry season is so fast, and so I love to enjoy while I can, and then freeze as much as I can to enjoy for months to come. Here are a few thoughts to freezing fresh berries and having these lovely sweet treats on hand for months...
1.) I prefer to wash and pick off the green tops to strawberries before freezing. But this means you must make sure they dry really well before you put in the freezer. Some say to freeze on a cookie sheet before putting into a zip lock bag, but I have found (because of lack of freezer space) that if you wash and dry them on the counter for a few hours you can put them in a freezer bag from the counter and then freeze. You may get a few frozen berry clumps in your bag, but usually with a little force they break easily. And frozen berries are usually being made in smoothies, pies and baked goods and it's ok for them to have a few clumps if it happens.

2.) Don't let any ripe berries go to waste in season! If you date the bags of berries when you freeze them you can eat accordingly as well. This also helps with knowing what is freshest in the freezer if you have many bags like me. Plus, measuring out berries in {2 0r 4 cup measurements} may help before freezing if you plan to make pies, sauces, or jams with frozen berries throughout the year. Freeze as many as you can since they are not cheap, and enjoy the perks of fresh/frozen berries in October, or December. :) Some people wonder why I always seem to have berries on hand, and this is why....I have them in my freezer ready to use! Picking and freezing your own berries is the most frugal way.

3.) My favorite way to use these frozen berries is in smoothies. They are frozen so that add to the thickening part of the smoothie and of course color, sweetness and "freshness". My husband likes to make a blueberry protein shake almost every morning, so I try to make sure I have lots of blueberries in the freezer by the end of the summer. I am sure once blueberry picking season is underway in the next month I may be MIA for a while....:) The good news is, you will know where to find me.
4.) If you do not have a way to pick berries locally, I suggest you try and find farmers in your area that may just sell them at a local market. Looking for a no-spray farmer is always best because that saves your body from extra digested chemicals as well. I have a few favorite orchard/farms in west Michigan (if you are local and interested, let me know!)

Living in Michigan has it's perks (best beaches, perfect sunsets and gorgeous weather) and I think having fresh berries to pick is one of the top reasons. Plus, making a berry protein shake for breakfast is a perfect way to start a hot summer day. I use hemp milk and protein often because it is full of good fats (omega 3's and 6's), and it has good flavor, fiber and creaminess. If you are making a protein shake in the mornings, I would definitely suggest to stay away from whey and soy protein. Stick with plant based proteins like hemp, rice, pea... these proteins are cleaner, and will most likely not cause reactions in your body. It is good-nutrition in a cup.
Hemp Berry Breakfast Shake (vegan)
1 cup of vanilla hemp milk (or other non-dairy milk)
1/2 cup of frozen strawberries
1/2 cup of frozen blueberries
1 TB of chia seed meal (or flaxmeal)
1 heaping spoonful of hemp protein powder
1 TB of cod liver oil
1 TB of chrolophyll
a touch of organic apple juice to make it smooth and drinkable

Blend for 1 minute all of the above ingredients in a blender or magic bullet and you will have your morning smoothie ready to go. Add as little or as much apple juice as you like to get the thickness or smoothness you desire for your smoothie. Then viola- breakfast is ready! It is an easy breakfast on the go (out the door) if you have a nifty carry-along cup with straw. Plus, it is a great way to start your day off with fiber and protein. Just make sure you check your teeth in the mirror before your morning meeting....you may just have a blueberry seed in your teeth :)

Well, friends, that is my way to start the day today. A smoothie, and some moments of quiet. I hope you have a beautiful day.

Next berry to pick and freeze: Cherries!!!! :) hmmm ummm good!
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