Between the ages of two and eleven, I lived in Phoenix, Arizona. Some of my fondest memories include my brothers and me playing from late morning to sundown in our backyard pool. Mom always said I was like a fish. I would stay under water, skimming the bottom for an unusually lengthy amount of time and without an ounce of fear. The deep end was a place of comfort for me.
Splashing around and doing back flips off the diving board were a near daily occurrence in the warmer months. It was childhood bliss. One of the most memorable aspects of our long days was the pyramid of tea sandwiches mom would bring out to us. They were always accompanied by fresh squeezed lemonade. The selection usually included peanut butter & honey, mashed egg and tuna salad all served on whole wheat bread. A large bowl of chips for slipping into our peanut butter and honey sandwiches was always included in the spread. When she would come walking out of the house, carrying our lunch with ice cubes clanking in the glass pitcher, we’d leap out of the pool to feed our famished bodies.
Often we would have friends and extended family over to play in the pool. On those days, not only did we get mom’s tasty sandwich triangles, lemonade, and chips, but also bowls of mint chocolate chip ice cream. To this day, it is my favorite warm weather treat. As you may already know, I choose not to reserve tasty delights for special occasions. There is no need when we can enjoy them every day with a few nutrition-enhancing adjustments.
Now that the days are longer and growing hotter, I am indulging in a clean version of chocolate mint ice cream nearly every day. Sometimes I have it for breakfast––sometimes apres barre…but always savored to the very last sip…usually with my eyes closed and a smile on my face.
Makes: 1 (20-ounce) shake
1 large handful spinach leaves
1/4 cucumber, rough chopped
1 scoop chocolate plant protein powder
1 drop peppermint essential oil
6-7 fresh mint leaves
2 teaspoons E3live (optional)
1/2 medium avocado
1 cup almond milk
1/2 cup coconut or filtered water
8 ice cubes
1 teaspoons cacao nibs ( I used Navitas Naturals)
1. In a blender, combine spinach, cucumber, protein powder, peppermint oil, mint leaves, E3live, avocado, almond milk, coconut or filtered water, and ice. Blend on high for one minute until smooth and creamy.
2. Transfer to a glass or mason jar and top with cacao nibs. Slowly enjoy every sip!