Chocolate and Almond Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1 banana
  • 200ml unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tbsp cocoa  or cacao powder
  • 2 tbsp oats, (ground in spice or coffee grinder – optional) 
  • 1 tbsp ground almonds
  • Pinch of cinnamon 

Optional

  • Ice
  • 1tsp honey
  • 1tsp milled chia seeds
  • 1tsp ground flax seeds

Put it all in a blender and blitz. Taste. Add honey or more milk if needed. Pour over ice, if desired. 

Goshy this smoothie is good. I’ve grown tired of winter and of the cold, and as a result, I need more chocolate than usual, so why not add it to a smoothie? 

This would be great for breakfast and especially for children who are reluctant breakfast-eaters. It contains oats to keep them going for longer, ground almonds as some protein, and cocoa which can lower blood pressure, reduce memory loss AND lift your mood! I mean really, what’s not to love? 

This smoothie has got me out of a  tight spot today, and for that, I am additionally grateful. 

It started with a stand off in Pets-at-Home. I thought it would be ‘fun’ to go there, buy Alfie’s food, and look at the caged animals for sale. Big mistake. Ollie wandered off to the pet corner while I ladened myself down with three boxes of Sheba, (how has it happened that the cat is now only eating the most expensive of pouches?!), and 6kgs of dental cat biscuits. I only buy these to assuage my guilt, (at £10 per 2kg bag, I have a lot of guilt). 

Last time we visited the vets, she asked me how often I brushed the cat’s teeth. BRUSH HIS TEETH?! Good grief, do I not have enough to do without brushing a cat’s teeth every night? And even if I had the time and  inclination to brush his teeth, does she really think in her wildest dreams that Alfie would just sit there whilst I flossed round his incisors? He’d savage my hand off, that’s what he’d do. 

The vet looked at me disappointedly, when I replied in the negative about the teeth-brushing. She said the only other course of action would be to pay £250 for him to have a general anaesthetic, then the tartar build up could be removed properly.

I told the vet I’d think about it and slunk out of the surgery, weighed down on one side by Alfie in his basket. Since then I’ve been spending a fortune on cat biscuits which, I pray, will do the brushing for me. 

Back to Pets-At-Home, I find Ollie in the aquatics aisle. 

Right, time to go, Ol,” I say from behind my armful of boxes.

 “I want a treat,” says Ollie, “I’ve been a good boy”. 

I want to point out to him that we’ve only been out of the house for five minutes so he hasn’t been good for that long, but he has his arms round a 30″ fish tank and I don’t want to anger him.

Ok. Let’s go home and have a hot chocolate,” I suggest reasonably. 

I don’t want a hot chocolate. I want this tank,” he growls as he narrows his eyes and grips the tank harder. On closer questioning, it turns out he wants the tank, twelve clown fish and four decorative mutant ninja turtles to put in it. He’s giving me the evils. 

Darling, the problem is that Alfie will probably eat the fish and that wouldn’t be nice for them. I say as I put down the boxes and prise his hands from the tank. 

Now how about a smoothie with CHOCOLATE in and an episode of Tintin?” I suggest as I gently push him towards the exit. 

This smoothie was made up on the spot with the boy breathing down my neck. It’s amazing what you can produce under pressure….







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