Better Health / Food / The Wedge

“No Rum” Smoothie Fest at Andress YIG Smiths Falls

Steve Akeson turns Smoothie Barrista at Tasting Hut, Andress’ Your Independent Grocer, Smiths Falls

by MAGGIE M, Editor, Wedgee-in-Chief, theWedge.LIVE

I topped off another insane week with fun at Andress Your Independent Grocer visiting the smooth foodie at the Tasting Hut namely Steve Akeson. The place just hops on Friday afternoons–literally. Customers have a bounce in their step and smiles on their face.

They all seem familiar with Akeson. He could literally put a sign up like Lucy in Peanuts “5 cents listening session.” Blending and serving, inviting people to taste–that’s just a cover.

This day Akeson was a Smoothie Barrista. He was surrounded with blenders, large and bullet, store brand strawberries, blueberries (a power food), bananas, Organics almond milk, Organics chia seeds (most Omega-3 in a food), hemp hearts (rich in magnesium), and Greek yogurt (protein).

BAM! another smoothie sample goes down the hatch.

It’s fun to watch a group tasting. They all commend Akeson heartily for his creativity. It was literally blueberries, strawberries, Greek yogurt and banana–he played it safe. Hemp hearts and Organics chia seeds packages preened for the quirky among us.

I wondered, what are people eating if they rave about an easy-to-blend smoothie?

The ingredient everyone asked for was missing. It was rum.

The ingredient everyone asked for was missing. It was rum. It was an awful, cold day. To quote a tweeter, “it’s -600,000.” People kept their coats zipped-up and hats on tasting a cool concoction. Akeson could have served a “warm” drink; but, none of us are weather forecasters.

Nevertheless, I heard “mmmmm” and “mmmmm,”again and again. Seems taste ruled the day. Recipes were handy for screen capture. There were many.

Making smoothies is artistry–simple or complex.

Smoothie enthusiasts can go off-script with the wildest recipes. It’s a clever way to disguise healthy ingredients for fussy eaters; you know, the meat and potatoes type, and kids that only like five things. Imagine sneaking powerfoods like kale or spinach in a green smoothie. You could give your creations names like “the Grinch” or “the Frog.”

Smoothie ingredients at Tasting Hut, Andress’ Your Independent Grocer, Smiths Falls

You might be thinking, “I don’t have the time to cut fruits.” Buy the frozen packages bulk and simply scoop out the quantity you need. Now your preparation is down to a few minutes.

Maggie’s Easy Peasy Smoothie

  1. 1 cup Spinach (fresh)
  2. 1/2 cup Pineapple (digestive enzymes!)
  3. 1/2 cup Mango
  4. One Banana
  5. I cup pure water or distilled
  6. TWIST: Scoop of protein powder

Blend well for up to two minutes and serve with a paper straw, paper umbrella or a  piece of fruit tucked on the glass.

This smoothie packs a Vitamin C punch, a range of B vitamins, potassium and fibre. You can switch ingredients to suit your taste. Just blend and drink. Watch your family drink spinach–then go into a closet and bellow, “Muahaha I fed spinach to my family!”

Add protein powder (dairy or non-dairy) and it makes for a complete meal. Andress YIG offers a huge selection. The containers can last one month or more depending on the size of your family. There is even sprouted, vegan and plant protein.

Large selection of protein powders including sprouted protein at Andress Your Independent Grocer, Smiths Falls

I got inspired when my eyes landed on the Purest packs on the end aisle–they offer four varieties of cocoa. You can hide healthy ingredients well with nutritious cocoa–add banana, protein, hemp hearts, prebiotic yogurt or almond milk or kefir. Feels like a milkshake without the milk.

My children devoured salads for years asking for seconds because of my salad dressing made from scratch with healthy ingredients. Taste wins all the time.

Cocoa powders by Purest foods from Perth, Andress’ Your Independent Grocer, Smiths Falls

Preaching smoothies, Steve Akeson, Andress’ Your Independent Grocer, Smiths Falls

January is the month of the year when people everywhere focus on their health and eating better. This trend is on the rise. And smoothies are easy, fun and restorative.

STAY-TUNED for more recipes and health stories–after all, it’s January!

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