It's cherry season and I happen to adore them, as do my children. They're inexpensive and in abundance at the moment so we're stocking up! One of the things I love to do with them is to toss them into smoothies. I will pit and freeze batches of cherries so that they can be used at a later time when they're not in season or so reasonably priced. When I mentioned this to a friend she asked if I knew of an easy way to cut cherries - She thought it was such a messy and time consuming process. It really isn't. You could get a cherry pitter and my kids do have fun with them, but they can be messy as the pits shoot out the bottom and leave little cherry stains all over the place. The best place to use a cherry pitter is over the sink! I actually prefer to use a curved paring knife. Simply take the tip of the knife and cut the cherry in half, much the way you cut an avocado, then twist both sides (the way you used to twist an Oreo when you were a kid) and then gently nudge the pit out. It really is effortless! And this recipe calls for a half a cup of pitted cherries that have previously been frozen. I never use ice in my smoothies, instead I use frozen fruit which adds icy thickness without watering down the flavor!
(Makes 1 serving - Recipe can be doubled or tripled as needed)
About 6 oz. Vanilla Greek yogurt - I prefer to use Dannon Oikos Triple Zero
1/2 cup of cherries, pitted, halved and frozen for about a half hour or so
1/2 frozen banana, sliced
1/4 (more if desired) low fat milk
Add all the ingredients into your blender (I love using the Magic Bullet for this) in any order and pulse away until smooth. It will be the consistency of a McDonald's milkshake!
Pour your smoothie into a pretty glass, garnish with a cherry or mint leaf and grab a straw if you wish!
I enjoy these sometimes for breakfast, before or after a workout, or as an afternoon snack. Of course you can use any fruit or any combination of fruits. The key is using the Greek yogurt and frozen fruit for thickness.