Coconut kaffir lime cooler – with its clean, refreshing taste, intriguing aroma, and a good amount of healthy fat and minerals, this smoothie is a great breakfast alternative on a hot morning.
It’s June 1st, and almost summer, if you can believe it! It’s the season to keep it light and fresh in the kitchen, and honestly, I can live on fresh fruits and veggies easily all summer, as long as it’s nice and hot outside, and I keep loading on more fresh produce I can possibly eat. Today’s recipe is just that – it’s bursting with fresh, tropical flavors, it’s packed with good fat, and is loaded with vitamins, and minerals due to the coconut water and coconut milk it contains.
Coconut water has gained insane popularity recently, and rightly so. But to this day, I haven’t tried a commercially sold coconut water that tastes as great as the one, from a freshly opened young coconut. No big surprise here, as all companies include additives, and pasteurize the water, plus I suspect they use the water from very mature coconuts (which is cheaper but doesn’t taste as good).
If you are one of those people who have tried packaged coconut water, and thought it’s gross, I feel your confusion, as I’ve been there multiple times. But I strongly suggest you buy a young Thai coconut, and give it one more chance. When you choose the young coconut, make sure it’s firm to the touch, without brown spots. When you open it, the flesh should be pure white. Occasionally, I’ve bought young coconuts whose flesh has begun to turn pinkish and go sour, and therefore the coconut water inside has a bad taste. I should also point out, that if you try the coconut water from a mature coconut (the brown hairy ones), it will not taste as good, there would be less liquid in the coconut, and it won’t be as nutritious either. So if you want to go the natural way, only buy young Thai coconuts (the white ones, without the brown husk, usually sold wrapped in plastic foil). Your best bet will be an Asian or Mexican store, as these have a higher turnover for coconuts, and chances are the coconuts are much fresher.
Hawaiians call coconut water “dew from the heavens”, as it not only tastes great, but has an impressive nutritional profile. Coconut water is harvested from young, immature coconuts, whose flesh is still jelly-like. It’s the richest source of natural electrolytes like potassium, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus and sodium, and as such, it’s the ultimate post-workout hydrating, energy drink, or nature’s own ‘Gatorade’. Coconut water is also loaded with plant hormones, which have anti-aging, and anti-cancer benefits.
What else is in this smoothie? The kaffir lime leaves which perfume the drink and give its intriguing aroma; the ginger with its slight spicy kick but big health benefits (anti-bacterial, anti-inflamatory, anatioxidant). There is the fresh cucumber ( I prefer Persian varieties whose flesh is firmer and sweeter), and mango for sweetness. If you like your drinks on the sweet side, add a few drops of stevia or more mango. I used one small guava too, but that is totally optional. For creaminess you can use the meat from the young coconut, or you can use coconut milk. The milk has a more coconut flavor, but more fat.
The end result tastes almost like a milk shake but with a nice freshness and tropical aroma. Enjoy!
For a similar, but skinnier version, you may want to try this skinny green smoothie.
Coconut kaffir lime cooler - with its clean, refreshing taste, intriguing aroma, and a good amount of healthy fat, this smoothie is a great breakfast alternative on a hot morning.
- 1-2 fresh kaffir lime leaves *
- 1 1/4 cups fresh coconut water (from a young coconut)
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 2/3 cup chopped fresh mango
- 1 Persian cucumber (or half English cucumber)
- 1 1/2 inch long piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
- 1-2 guavas (optional)
- 1 cup ice
Open a young coconut using the technique of your choice. Here's a video on how to do it. Pour out the coconut water to a blender (usually about 1 1/4 cups).
Add the rest of the ingredients and 1 cup of ice, and blend until smooth. Taste and adjust the sweetness if needed by adding a few drops of stevia, or more mango. If you like more spicy, add more ginger.
* I bought my kaffir lime leaves online here. They come fresh, and a little goes a long way. However, you can store the rest of the leaves in the freezer, and they won't lose their aroma.