Truth: this is the very first time I’ve ever cooked with beets. They aren’t my favorite, but I’m working on that. Roasting helps and so does half-and-half-ing them with cherries. And coconut milk and cocoa powder and vanilla. Baby steps… we’re taking it slow, people.
I’ve been writing to you for almost a year and a half now on this little blog. I can’t believe how long it’s been, and there are lots of days when I’m not sure what I’m doing, but I love it with all my heart. Every time one of you tags my food in a picture or writes to tell me what you think – if I can’t constantly cook for all my friends everywhere, well, at least I can share my recipes with you.
This is what I’m thinking about this Valentine’s season: I’ve been slowing down a bit here, but that has very little to do with the blog itself and much more to do with what’s happening in our world at the moment. Reading the news has been really hard lately. The only thing that makes it easier is spending as much time in my community as possible.
People need people. The past few weeks have been especially heartbreaking as a volunteer for the International Rescue Committee. Families who have spent years in limbo in the worst, hardest parts of the world finally had their shining chance for a safe life – and then it was snatched away. Families who made it through find themselves in a country that is making it clear they aren’t wanted here either.
I can’t stop thinking about what I can do. Staying busy helps, but helplessness drags down your heart. Yesterday I took two little boys who just arrived from Syria to enroll in school. One wants to be a police officer and his little brother wants to be a pilot. I’m clinging to the desperate hope that by the time they grow up, they can be anything without fear or judgment.
Roasting the beets is optional… sometimes nobody has time for that. Roasting does bring out a sweeter flavor and smoother blended consistency, but if you’re in a hurry raw will work fine – just make sure they’re chopped small enough that your blender can handle it. Alternatively, if you find yourself making this often, roast a big batch and keep them in the fridge!
- 2 medium beets peeled & roughly chopped, greens set aside
- 1 cup frozen cherries
- 15 oz. light coconut milk
- 2 T. cocoa powder
- 1 T. chia seeds
- 1 t. honey
- 1 t. vanilla
- cocoa powder for garnish
Preheat oven to 400°.
Roast the chopped beets on a foil-lined sheet for 25-30 minutes, until soft.
Blend beets, beet greens, cherries, coconut milk, cocoa powder, chia seeds, and vanilla until smooth.
Run a damp paper towel around the edge of your serving glasses and roll the edges in cocoa powder.
Pour smoothies into glasses and enjoy!