We wonder | wander | women love our walks and our workouts, but like any other human being we get hungry, and sometimes we crave a scoop of peanut butter and a scoop of chocolate in a glass of almond milk, or goopy strawberry bits in yogurt.
This Black Friday week we saw a blender with a sports bottle attachment go on sale and we leaped at the chance to finally be able to make lazy smoothies. The Breville Blend-Active comes with two sports bottles, so we can leave one in the fridge at home and take the other to work. But woman does not live on peanut butter alone (sadly). The Internet had lots of suggestions for fruit shakes, which was a great excuse to go to the local market.
Chapel Market in Islington plays host to over 200 stalls. Unlike Portobello Road, Borough Market or any of London's more high-end, photogenic centres, Chapel Market vendors sell simple, functional items. The usual phone accessories and household goods line the stalls here, with an occasional kiosk for hand-sewn bags or kooky hats. But most people come for the Islington farmers' market at the east end of the street.
We bought what felt like a bucket of fruit for £4.50 - two containers each of blackberries and raspberries, half a pound of strawberries, a bag of apples, plus some grapefruit and lime.
We washed the fruit and chopped up the larger strawberries into bite-size pieces. Of course we couldn't resist - we ended up munching on several of the juiciest, sweetest specimens.
Freezing packs of fruit in bags, ready to dump in the blender, is a great way to save time and energy. The frozen berries eliminate the need for ice cubes, which dilute the taste of the smoothie.
For extra creaminess and flavour, add yogurt. This organic yogurt is already infused with strawberry, intensifying the flavour of one of our favourite fruits.
We're still learning, so the prospect of drinking spinach or kale in a shake is a little scary (especially to someone who prefers their kale stir-fried in butter). But a ginger-apple shake, maybe with a little carrot, sounds refreshing and just as good to us.
British apples are small and a little bit floury compared to the Red Delicious and giant Fuji apples we grew up with, but they're incredibly sweet and juicy and we could drink litres of their juice (and often do).
Other projects in the mix: smoothie cocktails, more blends with peanut butter and chocolate, and maybe soon we can venture into the mysteries of the green smoothie. Until then we plan to enjoy our fruity shakes, and at least our new blender will save our starving souls from stopping for burgers on the way home.