This delicious and brilliantly coloured pumpkin spice smoothie with cranberries is perfect as a Christmassy treat.
A Squash and a Squeeze!
As autumn blends into the Christmas season, I love the way the contents of my supermarket trolley reflects the colours of the trees outside. As pumpkins, squash and gourds have come into season, rich shades of orange abound. Time for pumpkin and squash with everything!
Butternut squash is one of my favourite ingredients; once peeled, chopped (with the aid of a good heavy sharp knife) and roasted, the flavours become concentrated and the flesh caramelised and sweet. It is the perfect addition to salads, wraps, dips, bakes, omelettes and pasta sauces.
Once cooked you can freeze it, but it loses some texture so once defrosted it is better reheated, or puréed with other ingredients. I also like it raw; the trick is to grate it which makes it easier to chew, or you can juice it.
Pumpkin Spice and Cranberry Breakfast Boost
This pumpkin (or butternut) spiced smoothie has a glorious cheerful colour which will brighten up a dull morning, with the sweetness of the roasted butternut tempered by the tartness of gloriously red berries. Bright cranberries are one of the delights of Christmas, and it’s such a shame to only see them on our plates once a year next to the turkey.
For this recipe I roasted the squash with a sprinkling of Biscoff or speculoos mixed spice blend. If you have one, use your favourite spice blend; they vary massively. I’m not a fan of either too much cinnamon or nutmeg, which some people love.
I find you can use squash and pumpkin interchangeably. I prefer the flavour of butternut squash. Ed and I get through them faster, and crucially before they go off!
If you are not used to green, or other veggie smoothies, this pumpkin spiced smoothie with cranberries is a really good one to try. It could be the first step in establishing the habit of adding vegetables to your glass and eating them for breakfast. My mantra for a healthy diet is to concentrate on the good stuff – namely veggies – and the less good stuff will look after itself. The flavour here is all about the spice, rather than the pumpkin, which does not stand out. It may seem strange at breakfast time, but its sweetness is necessary to offset the cranberries’ acidity.
Recipe: Pumpkin Spice Smoothie with Cranberries
- ½ cup roasted butternut squash (or pumpkin)
- ½ cup cranberries
- 1 cup grapes
- 1 tbs ground linseeds or chia seeds
- 200 ml small glass orange juice
- Chill all the ingredients overnight, or freeze the grapes
- Place all the ingredients into a blender and whizz until smooth.
- Add a little water if needed to get the desired consistency.
If you get a taste for smoothies, keep a box of ingredients in the freezer. With a good blender, chunks of all sorts of fruit can all be whizzed up from frozen for your breakfast. Whizzed frozen banana is especially thick and creamy. I find it makes excellent ice cream. A stick blender should be enough to whizz up soft fruit with a few frozen additions.