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Unless otherwise noted, all recipes on this blog are free of gluten, peanuts, soy, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, shellfish, cane sugar, oranges, and yeast. Most recipes are also free of egg, dairy, and tree nuts (if used, reliable substitutions will be provided for these when possible). Check out my recipe index for a full list of recipes by category. 

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Friday
Jun262009

Lemon Balm-Apple-Kale-Cucumber Smoothie (gluten free, vegan)


When I opened my refrigerator the other day, I was greeted by an abundance of fresh herbs. My garden is thriving, and producing more herbs than I can possibly use! My tarragon and savory are both over 2 feet high. My basil plants are on track to be small bushes. And my thyme, rosemary, parsley and lemon balm are growing very nicely, yielding plenty for frequent harvests. I've been adding herbs to salads and sauces, throwing them in smoothies and soups, and adding them to cooked meats and roasted vegetables. Oh, herbs, beautiful herbs! I had never grown lemon balm before, and am really excited to try using it different ways.

Lemon balm is a member of the mint family, and has been traditionally valued for its sedative, anti-spasmodic, and naturally anti-bacterial properties. It can be prepared as a tincture, an essential oil, a tea, or an injection. It used to treat a variety of autoimmune diseases as well as thyroid issues, amenorrhea, anxiety, and viral infections.

 

Since I had it, I decided to just throw the whole darn bunch right in the blender. Its light, bright hint-o-lemon flavor complimented the sweetness of the apple and cucumber, and balanced the bitterness of the kale. For an extra boost of protein, I added a blob of homemade sunflower seed butter, which added a nice, toasty flavor. As usual, I included protein powder; feel free to omit if you don't want it!


LEMON BALM-APPLE-KALE-CUCUMBER SMOOTHIE (gluten free, vegan)
1 Granny Smith apple
3-4 inch chunk cucumber, seeded
4 kale leaves
1 large handful fresh lemon balm
1 blob sunflower seed butter
1 T flax meal
1-2 scoops protein powder of choice (I use a rice-based powder)
1-3 tsp cod liver oil, flax seed oil, coconut oil, or mix
water
  1. Wash all fruits and vegetables, coarsely chop, and place in blender with additional ingredients.
  2. Blend on high until smooth.
  3. Serve!

 

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Reader Comments (1)

Hello. I planted lemon balm for the first time and was looking for a recipe for it. I didn't have all the ingredients you listed, but I happened to have apple and kale. Plus, the cucumbers in the garden are just starting to ripen. This is the first time I tried kale in a smoothie, so I'm a newb at "green" smoothies. It's different, but the flavors of lemon balm, apple and cucumber go well together. I enjoyed reading your information on lemon balm, too. Thanks!

July 28, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarge
Sorry, no comments/questions allowed right now.
Hi reader! My schedule as full-time grad student with two part-time jobs doesn't allow me the time to manage comments. I hope you enjoy what you find and can figure out answers to any questions you may have. xo