January is all about cleanses and new starts. I’m not one for cliche resolutions, but I do know when I need to recalibrate after periods of over indulgence. These days its about hydration for my body.My mornings consists of smoothies on occasion, but mostly herbal infusions or teas for the commute to work. As for sweeteners I’m not one to shun it, but gravitate towards the most natural sweeteners possible. One could debate endlessly about natural sweeteners, sugars, etc. I will always choose my Swedish neighbors beautiful raw honey or a gorgeous subtle non refined crystallized German Rock Sugar. Natures natural unrefined enhancements. So whats this about? The Williams – Sonoma community wanted to know what I would consider for a Not Your Typical Smoothie theme.
I love dairy but it doesn’t love me unfortunately. So in thinking of a smooth emulsified nutritious drink that’s not your typical smoothie, I came up with the jelly like aloe vera gel, which I had always enjoy in a fruity drinks from the Asian stores, lemon , which cleanses and hydrates me, and my favorite colorful herbal infusion, hibiscus. I knew the aloe vera gel would create a silky icy smooth lemonade type of quencher, a Soothie, as opposed to a Slushie. For sweetener I melted some pieces of German Rock Sugar with the hibiscus infusion, which is derived from beet juice, and lets the true flavor shine, rather than mask it. So if a smoothie in the classic definition is a emulsified blend of fruits, veggies, ice, dairy and sweetener, this is it. Sweetener from beets, aloe vera juice, lemon, and the beautiful hibiscus. I see a lot of questionable things pass for smoothies in commercial establishments these days. It’s so easy to make your own goodness. While their are some amazing blenders on the market, this smoothie/soothie is pretty low tech. A powerful blender which crushes ice is all you need.
Benefits of Aloe Vera Gel
Benefits of Hibiscus
Aides in lowering blood pressure and cholesterol
Benefits of Lemon
Aides weight loss
Stimulates digestive tract
Anti cancerous liminoids
Benefits of German Rock Sugar
Unrefined and less sweet
Doesn’t alter taste as much as refined sugars
- 2 tablespoon of dried Hibiscus
- ½ cup hot water to steep hibiscus
- 1-2 tablespoons of German Rock Sugar
- ½ cup Aloe Vera Gel
- Juice of one lemon
- 1 cup of crushed ice
- Steep Hibiscus and German rock sugar in hot water for several minutes and until sugar is dissolved. Cool down naturally or with a bit of ice. Strain.
- Add the aloe vera gel, lemon juice, ice, and strained hibiscus infusion to a blender with crushed ice.
- Blend until frothy .
- Serve immediately.