Alright, here it is: a foolproof way to get my 5 year old to enthusiastically eat large bunches of fresh greens. While I do enforce the consumption of vegetables on a regular basis, he has always recoiled at leafy greens – spinach, kale, chard and lettuces – in their raw state, anyway. One day I grabbed a handful of fresh parsley, which is as loaded with nutrients as their dark green leafy cousins, and tossed it into the blender with the usual banana, yogurt and berries. It whizzed right in, undetectable, and went down just as smoothly.
I’ve since then snuck larger quantities of parsley into our smoothies, and no one is the wiser. You can’t see it, so long as you use dark blueberries or the frozen strawberry-raspberry-blackberry-blueberry mix we always have stashed in the freezer. Today, as illustrated in the picture above, I pushed the envelope and added an entire bunch of curly parsley, with the bulk of the stems removed, into a quantity of smoothie enough for just us 3. Everyone devoured it. Honestly, I’m as excited about the potential to get more greens into my own diet this way than for the sake of the kids’ leafy intake.
Of course you hardly need a recipe for a smoothie – I always wing it with bananas, frozen berries and plain yogurt, sometimes with juice or milk or other fruits tossed in (watermelon, mango and pineapple are great). Just toss stuff in until you have a sippable consistency.
And don’t forget the parsley.
Purple Parsley Smoothie
1 banana, peeled and broken into chunks
2 cups frozen mixed berries (such as blueberries, raspberries and blackberries)
1 big handful (or a small bunch) of curly or flat-leaf parsley, stems removed
1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup orange or other fruit juice
2 Tbsp. honey, or to taste
Put all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth, adding more juice, yogurt or berries as necessary to achieve the right consistency. Serve immediately. Serves 2-3.