This month I taste tested a green smoothie with our Harvest of the Month, Kale. Since many students kept asking "How did you make this?" "What's in it?" "How can I make this at home?", here's the recipe:
Blend the following until smooth:
- 2 apples (diced)
- 3-4 bananas (best frozen)
- 2 cups pineapple (or peaches, mango, strawberries, etc.--you choose!)
- 2 handfuls of dark leafy greens (we used Kale!)
- 2 cups filtered water
I was honestly a little bit surprised at how many students LOVED the smoothie. After all, the color is Shrek green and made even some adults cringe. But I've discovered that Chicopee students are very brave when it comes to trying new foods. Granted, sometimes it takes a little persuading, but once the picky students see their peers enjoying a new food, they line right up to try it.
And try it they did! Almost every student in grades 3-5 at three elementary schools (Stefanik, Litwin, and Lambert-Lavoie) took a sample. And many asked for seconds! I actually had to turn kids away to make sure that there would be enough smoothies for everyone. That's not a bad problem to have.
Lots of kids were already familiar with kale, particularly since kale chips were recently on the menu. At Litwin Elementary, Cook Manager Debra Badger tries to prepare the chips nearly every other day because they are so popular with the students. I was amazed to find 4th graders coming up to me and proclaiming their love for kale. One student even wanted raw leaves to put on his salad!
Here are some notable quotes from my three elementary school taste tests:
- "We don't want the recipe, we NEED the recipe!"
- "Can we have this every day?"
- "Can we have more?" (this was a frequent question)
- "Mmm that is the best thing!"
- "If I had 10 thumbs up..."
- "Best smoothie ever!"
- "I'm gonna ask my mom to buy kale so I can have it at home"
-Greta Shwachman (FoodCorps Service Member)