Constantly, I am watching the dynamic between the external world and my inner environment. Lately, I sense their keen alignment. I feel tuned-in and filled up as I step outside and see the late afternoon moon soft against blue sky. I feel sleepy and slow on the rainy days where I gaze from my bedroom window at muddy puddles surrounding garden beds. Even today, sitting on my couch editing photos and writing this post, the sky is overcast — woolen white and grey. And despite my intense focus on work my body is crying out to get a long soak in some hot, salty water.
I’m enamored of this weather-spirit connection. In my mind, it’s a romantic quirk. As if my moods create the weather. As if my story is somehow that much more poetic or film-like: rain for contemplative days, sun and flowers for energetic days.
Of course it’s rarely that simple.
If only I had a personal weather dial I could tune to match my moods. With a booster switch for when I need fireworks (or candy raining from heaven).
I can’t change the nature of the weather and how it affects me. But I can change the nature of my own internal weather. Through self-care, meditation, expression, movement and plenty of groovy potions!
Todays recipe is a coffee drink I’ve lovingly nicknamed “groovy brew.” I developed it purely because I wanted to sip on a coffee drink that was truly delicious and incorporated banana (for that “funky monkey” kind of vibe).
It’s sweet, but not overly so. It’s creamy and milky and super simple. The banana is an undertone, and the added fiber and nutrition makes this coffee drink more of a snack or breakfast treat.
As I’m wont to do, I threw some superfood powders in there too. They’re optional, but they really take this sipper from “delicious coffee drink” realm to “MAGICAL WONDER POTION” realm.
The coffee banana smoothie is made up of only 6 ingredients (including ice): cold brew concentrate, cashew butter, banana, cinnamon, ice and water (or plant milk). It’s 8 ingredients if you choose to add reishi and maca (you definitely should).
Reishi and maca are two of my most beloved plant allies. I use them almost daily — in smoothies, soups or stirred into nut butters.
Reishi is well known for its anti-inflammatory, cancer-fighting powers. Reishi is an adaptogen, which means it helps to bring the body back into homeostasis. It combats stress and fatigue, beloved for its ability to stabilize hormones and lower blood pressure. Because it is an adaptogen and it literally “adapts” to what your unique body needs some people may experience it as relaxing, while others will experience it as energizing. Personally, I find it helps support an even mood, positive outlook and relaxed body. There isn’t much research on how it affects emotions and dreams, but I also find that I am generally happier when I take reishi and gain interesting and deep insights from my dreams (which I also remember more clearly).
Flavor-wise: reishi often smells of malt chocolate and tastes meaty and bitter. I use it most frequently as a powder, which blends tastelessly into most of my elixirs, savory and sweet. Reishi has been used in Chinese medicine for eons, and is becoming more widely available. I buy powdered reishi from my local hippie health food store, but I also buy it directly from Om Mushrooms.
Maca is also an adaptogen, prized for its hormone balancing powers. It is beloved for improving libido and fertility as well as improving energy, focus, stamina and mood. Maca itself does not contain hormones, but acts on systems of the body (like the adrenals, thyroid and pituitary) to help them function optimally. It’s also a good source of nutrition (18% protein, 76.5% complex carbohydrates, 5% fat, 8.5% fiber), vitamins (B1, B2, C and E) and minerals (calcium, magnesium, potassium, copper, zinc, manganese, phosphorous, selenium, sulfur, sodium, iron).
Maca has a very mild, sweet and caramel-like taste. You find it most frequently as a powder, and it is commonly available at health food stores and organic groceries in the supplements aisle. I like this concentrated gelatinized maca from Terrasoul.
If you are wondering about cold brew concentrate, you can buy it OR you can make it. Chameleon coffee sells a concentrate available at most Whole Foods. Logan and I have our own cold-brew recipe that we use at home (coming to the blog soon). In the mean time, this recipe from Bon Appetit is pretty solid.
I hope you all enjoy this cold brew coffee banana smoothie! And if you make it (or a variation on it) please let me know! I love to hear from you guys. LIKE I LOVE IT SO MUCH. Use the hashtag #willfrolicforfood or tag me @willfrolicforfood so I can see!