Every summer back in Austin, I put on five pounds, easy (and willingly, I might add). My daily mineral water habit gives way to an afternoon IPA (there’s no good beer in Mexico, as far as I’m concerned), a general avoidance of baked goods for their refined sugars, wheat and dairy makes me a kid in a candy shop every time we hit a Whole Foods, and though I’m not a big meat eater, absurdly tender, falling-off-the-bone smoked and saucy ribs? I’ll pay a few pounds for the pleasure, any year.
By far the greatest shift in my daily diet in Austin vs. Tulum, though, is the substitution of morning juice for breakfast tacos. Come to think of it, fresh squeezed juice, for its variety and availability, is the breakfast taco of Tulum. On nearly every block and for about the same price, I can buy a beet/orange/chaya or an apple/celery/ginger or a grapefruit/lime/sugarcane for the price of an egg/bean/avacado or a Dirty Sanchez on corn (pardon the nasty name, but it’s simply the best breakfast taco on the planet). Juice here, on the other hand, will run me 8-10 bucks and require an hour in traffic, so it’s pretty much not happening.
This morning though, feeling a little sluggish and taco-ed out, I decided to behave myself and busted out the blender. I thought I’d share with you the juice I make myself nearly every morning in Tulum (when I’m not enjoying a carrot/parsley/cucumber on the street corner).
This one’s a personal favorite for five reasons:
1. It’s simple
2. It’s cheap
3. It’s green but still delicious
4. It doesn’t require a juicer
5. My kids will drink it
And apparently (according to my waistline), you can drink a whole blender of it for less calories than a breakfast taco, so…bonus!
Agua de Sandia y Espinaca (Watermelon Spinach Agua Fresca)
Less than 1/4 of a sweet watermelon
Juice from 1 lime
Hefty handful of spinach
1-2 cups ice
Touch of maple syrup (optional)
Pack 3/4 of blender with watermelon, cut into chunks. (I don’t bother removing the seeds, I just blend them well and rather enjoy the bit of crunch at the bottom of the glass.) Add lime juice, spinach and ice to top. Blend until ice is crushed and spinach is no longer leafy. (The watermelon, if packed in tightly enough, will create all the liquid you’ll need). Add more lime or a touch or maple syrup to taste.
That’s it! Delicious, nutritious, refreshing and just green enough to blame the color on the lime and get some greens in your kid.
Happy summer, friends! Hope it’s been a sweet one.