Simple Green Smoothies

Hi there! I’m a big fan of making smoothies for breakfast. They are quick and easy to have on my way to work. The only problem is that I made the same one every. single. day. Occasionally I mix it up, but they all revolve around frozen fruit and almond milk. The other morning, I wanted to try something new. I googled “smoothie recipes” like a normal person and came across this site. Normally, when I try to find smoothie recipes they either make enough to feed an entire family, or involve 428 ingredients I don’t have. Simple Green Smoothies, like it’s name suggests, is full of easy smoothie recipes that are simple and delightful! The site in general is just plain awesome. It’s full of tips and useful information about smoothies. I’m impressed.

Here are a few recipes that caught my eye:

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Takes Two To Mango

Raspberry-Coconut-Shortcake

Raspberry Coconut Shortcake

almondbutterandjelly_SGS

Almond Butter and “Jelly”

avobananakale_SGS

Avo-Banana Kale

Happy Blending!

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Salted Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

I originally wanted to create a blog based around running and racing. The problem with that is I am currently in race recovery mode and have only really done a handful of races I find note worthy. Not to mention here in New Hampshire race season is coming to an end with snow fall right around the corner. Don’t worry though, I have a few races on the calendar before the year ends.

SO meanwhile, I’ll write about things I do know about, like cookies. After all, a sweet rewards are one of the many benefits that comes with long distance running. Also can be the reason for all the running…

This is my go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe. They require some serious patience and a little bit of planning, but as long as you have the ingredients and a few days to spare – they are easy!

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Ingredients: See? Normal cookie ingredients. The two most important things are cake flour and good quality chocolate. Cake flour is fine, while all-purpose flour has more gluten. Together they make magic. The difference between using cheap chocolate and good chocolate is extremely noticeable. After all, chocolate is in the name of these cookies.

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Kitchen Aid is taking the wheel here creaming the butter and sugars. You want to get it light and fluffy.

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After adding all other ingredients (see recipe below) you get a pretty good looking pile of dough if I do say so myself.

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This part is very important: you put the dough into plastic wrap and you…. wait for it…. put it in the refrigerator for a minimum of 24 hours. If you are antsy, a few hours will do. 36 hours is ideal. Sometimes I do three days because I forget. The lesson I have learned is that the longer you wait, the better they taste. Having the dough hang out in the fridge allows the eggs, butter, and liquids to soak and hydrate into all the dry ingredients. It also allows the flavor to develop in a deep caramel toffee-y goodness.

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When the time is right, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper (which I clearly forgot to do here, not the end of the world) and scoop out LARGE cookies. I’m talking about almost 1/3 of a cup. People make cookies too small. Larger cookies allow the edges to get crispy and the insides gooey… and they don’t dry out as fast!

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You also want to sprinkle some course sea salt on top… the salt… with the sweet… yup. Enough said.

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The bet part about the cookies is that they are great the second day because the flavors continue to develop. But of course, eat one right out of the oven and burn your tongue. I did.

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And that, my friends, is how you make an impressive chocolate chip cookie. (And how you take poor lighting pictures of really delicious cookies that look better in person.)

Here’s the useful information I left out. Enjoy.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Found via Kate who Adapted it from Jacques Torres

Time: 45 minutes (for 1 6-cookie batch), plus at least 24 hours’ chilling

  • 2 cups minus 2 Tbsp. cake flour (8 1/2 oz)
  • 1 2/3 cups bread flour (8 1/2 oz) 1 ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1 ½ tsp. coarse salt, such as kosher
  • 2 ½ sticks (1 ¼ cups; 10 oz.) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 ¼ cups (10 oz.) light brown sugar
  • 1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. (8 oz.) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ pounds bittersweet chocolate chips or chunks, preferably about 60% cacao content, such as Ghirardelli
  • Sea salt or kosher salt for garnishing

1. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Set aside.

2. Using a mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars together until very light, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low, add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, 5 to 10 seconds. Drop chocolate pieces in and incorporate them without breaking them. Press plastic wrap against dough and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Dough may be used in batches, and can be refrigerated for up to 72 hours.

3. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. Set aside.

4. Scoop 6 3 1/2-ounce mounds of dough (the size of generous golf balls) onto baking sheet, making sure to turn horizontally any chocolate pieces that are poking up; it will make for a more attractive cookie. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and bake until golden brown but still soft, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer sheet to a wire rack for 10 minutes, then slip cookies onto another rack to cool a bit more. Repeat with remaining dough, or reserve dough, refrigerated, for baking remaining batches the next day. Eat warm, with a big napkin.

Yield: 1 1/2 dozen 5-inch cookies.