I am very inspired by accounts of foraging for food at Riana's blogs, but so far haven't had many opportunities to get my forage on, apart from occasionally sampling whatever weeds I pull up out of the backyard. For a desk jockey like me, the kitchenette at work is the closest I really get to foraging--that's where all the leftovers from catered meetings end up.

Sometimes this works out really well for me, as it did last week when I realized no one was claiming the half dozen grapefruits someone had set out in a basket. It was the Friday before a holiday weekend, and darned if I was going to let this fruit go to waste! So I popped them all in my bike bag, and I drank up every single one of them in smoothie form, green or otherwise.

That's actually oatgrass for the cat and it has nothing to do with the beverage.

Grapefruits can be kind of pithy and intimidating, but if you have a decent blender, you can eat all that delicious fiber and barely notice that that's what you're doing.

Basic Grapefruit Smoothie
1 cup water
1 peeled grapefruit with the seeds popped out (I peel over the blender, so none of the juice goes astray)
enough orange-peach-mango juice to sweeten the deal (about half a cup)

Blend and serve. Makes 2.

Advanced Grapefruit Smoothie
1 cup water
1 peeled grapefruit (see above)
1 half a small ripe avocado
1 handful of spinach
1 glob of your favorite liquid sweetener (I used honey, but agave would be preferable)

Blend and serve over ice. Makes 2 smoothies that I would describe as Hard Core (hence the need for sweetener).

I love getting stuff in the mail, but delicious free stuff might be the best mail of all. Yesterday the nice people at POM Wonderful sent me a case of pomegranate juice to try. I was fresh off a very windy bike ride home from work (yesterday was one of those days when the wind is blowing directly at you no matter what direction you're facing) and in need of nutrition and hydration. So even though I'd already had a pile of veg in my morning green smoothie, I made another one.

Cucumber, pomegranate, spinach.

If you're a green smoothie aficionado (or color theorist), you already know that mixing red fruits with your greens often yields an unappetizing color. This smoothie is no exception, but what's cool is that as the solids separate from the juice, you get layers of color that are quite lovely. And anyway, it tastes good, so if the muddled color offends you, you can close your eyes and enjoy all the same.

Cucumber Pomegranate Green Smoothie
1 cup water
1 cup pomegranate juice
2 handfuls of spinach (about 1 packed cup)
1 half a cucumber, cut into chunks
Ice (optional)

Combine in a blender and mix on high; pour and enjoy. Serves 2.


I have a new stove. Will this make me a better food blogger?

A few weeks ago, I made this Amazing Whole Wheat Pizza Crust and was very pleased with the way it turned out. It's an easy recipe, and the dough is easy to handle--rolls out evenly, stretches without falling apart, etc. I made one batch and we had pizza two nights in a row.

With caramelized onions, braised kale, rehydrated mushrooms, gorgonzola. A bit out of control.

We also had hearty little sweet rolls made out of the same dough one morning. I rolled out the leftover dough into a rectangle, dotted it with butter, and sprinkled on cinnamon, ginger, brown sugar, rehydrated and chopped apricots, and slivered almonds. Then I rolled it up like a rug, sliced into inch-wide pieces, and baked at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Not too sweet, and very easy to grab on the way to your next Saturday morning chore. Seriously, I ate about 10 of them that day. But that also means I did a lot of chores.

My ongoing quest to be a better meal planner and to make as much from scratch as possible involves virtuous things like loading the new freezer with lumps of this pizza dough. I haven't done it yet, but I have high hopes.