Lately, I'm all about lemons. Apparently, my beloved flavor enhancer also packs a health benefit punch seeming to make it somewhat of a superstar.
As far back as Ancient Egypt, people have been juicing lemons to boost immunity, fight infection, aid digestion and cleanse the liver. The Egyptians actually used the lemon's ability to flush toxins from the body as a protection against poison, but side benefits include potential wrinkle reduction (due to Vitamin C and antioxidants), mood enhancement and fresher breath.
Lemons, with their high doses of pectin fiber, can also create a more "full" feeling, hence, perhaps aiding in weight loss. Containing significant amounts of potassium, calcium, folate, thiamin, niacin, vitamin B6, phosphorus, magnesium and copper, my little flavor enhancer really is doing me good.
With lemon water a part of my daily morning routine, choosing the Cleansing Lemon Kale Ice from Cheeky's menu last week while in Palm Springs (a MUST visit if you are in town) was a tempting decision, but the kale ingredient held me back. However, Dance Dad Pablo (we were in town for the girl's National Dance Competition), ordered the concoction and when his first sip brought forth gushing reviews, the rest of the table soon followed in kind.
Sweet, clean, citrusy, and filled with health benefits, this Lemon Kale Ice went down easily on our 118º day. With promises from the server that this drink could be easily made at home, I carefully copied the ingredients and promptly played with the proportions when we got home.
Sweetened with pure maple syrup, this drink boasts a rich flavor along with the clean brightness of the lemon. Not really a kale fan, I admit to concern as to what the green would add, but other than color I didn't detect any "green" flavors and simply smiled at the added nutrients.
While I may not be protecting myself from Egyptian Poison, I'll take every other lemon benefit mentioned. But in reality? It's all about the flavor. Bright and pure, lemon is my happy way to start the day.
Lemon and Kale Ice
Bright and sweet, lemon sings in this breakfast concoction. Packed with nutrients and flavor, Lemon and Kale Ice will have your family smiling as well as healthy.
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup water
1 cup ice
1 handful kale (or other assorted greens)
2-3 Tbs pure maple syrup
dash of cayenne.
Place all ingredients into a strong blender and blend until the greens are blended in and the ice is crushed. Pour into a chilled glass and enjoy!