Here at Belly Acres in Colorado, we trust nature to inform us about rhythms and combinations. Produce that plays well together often shows up together in the fields—the pesto times of herbs and tender spring garlic; the salsa times of tomatoes, peppers, onions, and garlic bulbs; and the stew pot times of apples, all the roots, and autumn squashes.

After the squatty stodge of winter, we look to the riot of greens to make us feel back on track and healthy in the sun. A trundle through the barn reminds us that green starts soft and mild in the spring and progresses to gnarlier and stronger as the seasons roll out. Palates seem to function in the same way, seeking the light and bright in the spring, followed by heavy and tart later in the harvest.

We mentally run through a likely evolution of smoothies as an example of such a thing. A stunning score of the aria of produce and good eats reveals itself. We might start with a kale/banana/strawberry/buttermilk preparation and move on to a bok-choy/pineapple/black-cherry/almond milk tumbler.

The joy seems to come from the variety of choice, never settling on one combination. And, of course, attention to season and availability. Not everything is available everywhere, so be willing to find an occasional frozen blackberry or other treat not growing in your region’s crops.

Greens in Your Smoothie to Live for, All Harvest Long
Makes 1 glass or many

1 part greens, can increase as desired (see the ingredients below)
2 parts fruit, can decrease as desired (see the ingredients below)
3 parts liquid, can decrease as desired (see the ingredients below)

  1. Trim and thoroughly wash the veggies and fruit. Peel the fruits such as oranges and melons, but otherwise leave the skins on if possible, such as cucumbers. Cut into chunks.
  2. Place the ingredients in a blender or food processor and whir ’til totally smooth. Scrape the side of the bowl or carafe as you go if the ingredients pesky-cling.
  3. Immediately serve while fresh!

Choice of greens, from mild to strong
Arugula
Beet greens
Bok choy
Celery
Chinese cabbage
Cilantro
Collard greens
Cucumber (whole)
Dandelion greens
Endive
Escarole
Herbs (such as parsley, mint, thyme)
Kale
Lettuce
Mustard greens
Red chard
Spinach
Sprouts
Swiss chard
Red cabbage
Turnip greens

Helsing Junction Farm Strawberries

Choice of fruits, from light to heavy
Banana
Blackberry
Blueberry
Cantaloupe
Grapes
Grapefruit
Honeydew melon
Kiwi
Mango
Orange
Pear
Pineapple
Raspberry
Strawberry
Watermelon

Liquids
Almond milk
Buttermilk
Coconut milk
Cow’s milk
Flax milk
Hemp milk
Kefir
Oat milk
Rice milk
Soy milk
Yogurt cut with fruit juice
Water

Cook’s tips and tricks: We would note that the greens and fruits also increase in strength as digestion and health will tolerate. Follow your intuition and your body signals.

—Deborah DeBord, Ph.D
Picked at the Peak

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