Updated: 01/23/2017 3:39 PM
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Get ready to bust out your blender! From smoothies, milkshakes, frosty cocktails there are plenty of tasty recipes you can make in a blast. Robin Asbell is a chef, Instructor and author of a new book called 300 best blender recipes using your Vitamix.
Creamy Cheddar Sauce
This decadent cheese sauce hides a nutritious secret: Puréed into the mix is a combination of cauliflower and carrot that blends to a creamy orange hue and stands harmoniously behind just enough tangy Cheddar to keep it cheesy. Serve hot over vegetables or pasta.
Recipe Suggestion: Macaroni and Cheese: Cook 8 oz macaroni in a pot of boiling salted water until tender but firm. Drain and combine with the sauce in an 8-cup glass baking dish. Top with 1 cup buttered crumbs and bake in a 400°F (200°C) oven for 20 minutes or until bubbly. Makes 4 servings.
Makes about 2 ½ cups
11⁄2 cups chopped cauliflower
1 medium carrot, chopped
1 cup whole milk
8 oz sharp or extra-sharp Cheddar cheese, cube (old or extra-old)
1⁄2 oz Parmesan cheese, chopped
3⁄4 tsp salt
1. In a steamer basket set over a pot of boiling water, steam cauliflower and carrot until very tender, about 10 minutes.
2. Transfer the vegetables to the Vitamix container and add milk, Cheddar, Parmesan and salt. Secure the lid. With the switch on Variable, select speed 1 and turn the machine on. Gradually increase the speed to 10, then flip the switch to High and blend for 1 minute or until the sauce is creamy and warm. If desired, blend for another 2 minutes to heat the sauce further.
Tip: Use a well-aged Cheddar, so the cheese flavor will carry through and mask the vegetable flavors.
Mixed Berry Probiotic Blast
Probiotics are the good bacteria in fermented foods like kefir and yogurt. They help to populate your gut with immune-boosting, supportive microorganisms. Adding a prebiotic like oats, a fiber-rich food that probiotic bacteria love, helps your good bacteria thrive.
Makes 2 servings
1 cup plain kefir
1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
1⁄4 cup large-flake (old-fashioned) rolled oats
1 large frozen banana
2 cups frozen mixed berries
1. Place the kefir, vanilla, oats, banana and berries in the Vitamix container. Secure the lid, remove the lid plug and insert the tamper. With the switch on Variable, select speed 1 and turn the machine on. Gradually increase the speed to 10, using the tamper to push the ingredients into the blades, then flip the switch to High and blend for about 20 seconds or to the desired consistency. Serve immediately.
Tip: Frozen berries make the smoothie thicker and more like a milkshake, but if you have fresh ones, go ahead and celebrate the season by using them.
Pecan and Beet Burgers
When you want satisfying burgers without beef, these are the perfect choice. The pecans give them an almost meaty texture and richness, and the beets add chewy sweetness and tint them a familiar beefy red. You’ll hardly even notice the creamy tofu holding it all together once you slap them in a bun with some lettuce and tomato, and serve a crisp salad on the side.
What you need: Large baking sheet, lined with parchment paper and lightly oiled
1 cup raw pecans
1 large onion, quartered
1 tbsp canola oil
9 oz beets, peeled and cubed
5 oz extra-firm tofu
2 tbsp ground flax seeds
1⁄2 tsp sal
2 tbsp red miso
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1. Preheat oven to 400°F and place the pecans in the Vitamix container and secure the lid. With the switch on Variable, select speed 5 and pulse 5 times, just until finely chopped. Transfer the nuts to a large bowl.
2. Secure the lid of the container and remove the lid plug. With the switch on Variable, select speed 3 and turn the machine on. Drop the onion quarters, one at a time, through the lid opening, using the tamper if they are not falling into the blades. Turn the machine off as soon as all the onion is minced.
3. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes or until softened.
4. Meanwhile, secure the lid on the Vitamix container. Select speed 5 and turn the machine on. Drop the beet cubes, one at a time, through the lid opening, using the tamper if they are not falling into the blades. Turn the machine off as soon as all the beets are chopped into small pieces.
5. Add beets to the skillet and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes or until beets are tender. Scrape into the bowl with the pecans.
6. Crumble tofu into the bowl (see tip) and add flax seeds, salt, miso and mustard. Knead gently with your hands, mixing well, until the mixture holds together when squeezed.
7. Using a 1⁄2-cup (125 mL) measure, scoop out 5 portions and place on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them evenly. With wet hands, gently flatten the portions to about 3⁄4 inch (2 cm) thick. Using your fingers, make the edges neat and round.
8. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes, carefully flipping the patties over halfway through, until firm and browned. Let cool on pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes before serving.
Tips: If you’re not vegan, you can use 1 large egg, beaten, in place of the flax seeds. Crumbling the tofu by hand is essential to the texture of the patties. Don’t worry about it being in big chunks; the process of kneading and mixing will finish the job. Burgers are great make-ahead fare and can easily be reheated in the oven or microwave.
Millet Demi-Loaf or Round
This petite loaf is a perfect addition to a family meal, or is enough for two people to dine on for a couple of days. The option to make a free-form round loaf gives you a little variety in your bread selection. This makes 1 small loaf.
What you need: Dry grinding container (see tip), a 9- by 5-inch metal loaf pan, greased, or 4-cup bowl, lined with a kitchen towel and dusted heavily with flour and baking stone (for round loaf)
3⁄4 cup hard white wheat berries
1⁄4 cup millet
1 cup warm water
1 tsp granulated sugar
1 tbsp quick-rising (instant) yeast
3⁄4 cup bread flour
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp coarse cornmeal (for the round loaf)
1. Place the wheat berries and millet in the dry grinding container and secure the lid. With the switch on Variable, select speed 1 and turn the machine on. Gradually increase the speed to 10, then flip the switch to High and blend for 1 minute or until the wheat is finely ground.
2. Turn the machine off and fluff the flour with a spatula. Let cool for 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in a 2-cup (500 mL) measuring cup, combine warm water, sugar and yeast. Stir well and let stand for 3 to 5 minutes or until foamy.
4. When the flour has cooled, add the bread flour and salt to the container. Replace the lid and remove the lid plug. With the switch on High, pulse once. Turn the machine on and slowly pour the yeast mixture through the lid opening, then blend for 10 seconds.
5. Turn the machine off and use a spatula to scrape the sides of the container. Replace the lid and pulse on High four times, stirring the dough up from the bottom of the blender each time. Let the dough rest, covered, for 5 minutes.
6. To knead the dough, use the spatula to pull it away from the sides of the container, then secure the lid. With the switch on High, quickly pulse five times. Turn the machine off and scrape the container, then pulse five more times. Scrape and pulse three more times. The dough will be soft and slightly sticky.
Tips: For the most accurate measurements when making baked goods, weigh your dry ingredients. For this recipe, you’ll need 150 g wheat berries, 50 g millet and 103 g bread flour. The dry grinding container makes quick work of grinding grains, but if you don’t have one, the regular container will work just fine. Using a baking stone is