Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Banana Juice

I have to admit, high as my ideals were about getting my kid to just drink water, I have come crashing down...a wee bit.  Given that Charlie's diet has consisted of plant based diet without too many alluring and tempting processed flavors, I figured straight up H2O would be right up the kid's alley.  I mean his "sweet" foods have consisted only of fruit and sweet potatoes - no juice, no processed sugar.  So I became pretty frustrated when he wouldn't drink water (at least more than a sip here and there).  The novelty of using a big boy straw cup had worn off, he was not a huge fan of just drinking from a cup, and he was just not buying it.  So that's when I set my standards a bit differently.  (It actually happened while he was sick and I was actually worried that his liquid intake was much too low.)  I decided to make my own "juice."  Hence, banana juice was born.

It is ridiculously simple and just what I need to get him to consume water.  All I do is take a 1/4-1/2 of a banana (depending on size) and a cup of cold water and blend the two in my blender.  It provides just enough taste to get him to drink it.  It's not even really sweet, the water just has a taste to it.  So there you have it.  Plain and simple.

To facilitate the juice process I generally freeze a couple bananas already broken up into 4ths (or 3rds if they are small bananas), so that I can just pull one out and pop it in the blender.  Frozen chunks help keep the juice cold while blending and the pre-broken, frozen chunks also help me to be able to make juice fresh for the day fairly quickly.  Since I don't keep the juice more than a day (as it starts to oxidize), I can't make up a large quantity for several days.   So anything I can do to make the actual juice-making-moment faster is good.  There may be some small pieces that don't get blended up, but that's okay.  Just spoon them out if it's a problem.

There you have it.  No, it's not actually as fast as pouring juice from a bottle.  But it's still pretty quick, and he's not getting any extra dyes, preservatives, sugars, HFCS, alternative sweeteners, or anything.  I have to admit, I do foresee times in our near future where having a bit of actual apple juice on hand to heavily dilute for drinking will happen just for ease (vacation coming up), but as long as we're home and I can swing it, I'll make our more natural "fruit juices".  Maybe next time I should toss in an apple chunk or frozen blueberries instead.

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