Last week I had the pleasure of visiting the Four Seasons Hotel in Georgetown, downtown DC, where I met the beautiful Tess Masters: The Blender Girl. Tess, whose background led her to creating wholesome and balanced meals in her blender, partnered with the Four Seasons Hotel to add healthy additions to the Seasons menu that are all free from gluten, dairy and refined sugar.
When we arrived at the Seasons restaurant Tess was busy in the kitchen creating two delicious smoothies. While tasting, Tess shared her story and how she had used food to heal her body. She elaborated on how the blender is one of the greatest kitchen appliances/gadgets and the bounty of recipes that can be made in that single appliance.
Tess obviously has an amazing knack for creating smoothies, but listening to her talk about making a perfect smoothie was really helpful. Tess explained that although the most popular smoothie google search is a strawberry banana smoothie, what people are looking for is an easy to make smoothie that is bold in flavor, fulfilling, and filling. Tess Masters left us with 6 steps for making a perfect smoothie, and I wanted to share those steps with you today.
Step 1 – You’re going to want to start with liquids. Tess helped me to think outside of the box when it comes to liquids. Her ideas included water, coconut water, milk, juice, herbal or green tea, kefir, kombucha, and aloe vera juice. You’ll add in 1-2 cups of each liquid, except the aloe vera juice, which is only 1/4 cup.
Step 2 – Next you’ll want to add a base. Tess again was great about encouraging us to add fruits and veggies, ones that we wouldn’t necessarily think of adding, like red bell pepper. We also talked about the benefit of freezing your fruits and veggies, how it changes the structure of the cold smoothie and how freezing locks in nutrients. Some of her ideas included freezing zucchini, cauliflower, butternut squash, and a plethora of fruits. You’ll add 2-3 cups of your base total.
Step 3 – Although I never thought of it, we all want a creamy smoothie. The addition of cream at step 3 helps you to achieve just that! Think of fruit – avocado, mango, or banana, coconut – 1 tbsp creamed or 1/2 cup raw meat, yogurt – 1/4-1/2 cup plain or flavored, nuts – 1/4-2/3 cup raw cashews, macadamias, or blanched almonds, flavored iced cubes – milk or coffee ice cubes, nut butters – 1-2 tablespoons of your favorite nut butter, tofu – 1/4 cup silken tofu, and cooked vegetables – cauliflower, pumpkin, and squash.
Step 4 – Some of us are scared of adding greens to our smoothies, but between the nutrients and the flavor, a little green goes a long way. Tess encouraged adding greens like spinach, romaine, radish greens, chard, bok choy, collard greens, kale, arugula, or fresh herbs like mint or parsley.
Step 5 – Adding boosters add just that, a boost of nutrients to your smoothie. Think seeds – flax, chia, or hemp, oil – avocado, olive, flax, or coconut, superfoods – acai, popmegranate, goji, or maca powder, green powders – spirulina or wheatgrass, protein powder, or a probiotic powder. Lots of people are now into adding collagen powders!
Step 6 – Last, but not least, you’ll want to add a touch of magic! Spices, fresh herbs, zest, chocolate, natural extracts, sweeteners, and/or salt. These take your smoothie to a new level and round out every else you’ve added in steps 1-5.
I definitely have my favorite smoothies here at home, but I’ve enjoyed experimenting with new flavors through the 6 steps this week and thinking outside the box. I will say, adding cauliflower is a game changer! Especially frozen cauliflower!
After enjoying our smoothies, we all headed to the dining room where we enjoyed the new additions to the Seasons menu, most of which were created by Tess Masters.
The new menu is delightful, filling, and complex in its own way. I absolutely loved the idea of having a avocado salad and know I can make it at home. The avocado sat on a bed of zucchini ribbons and was topped with tomatoes, chimichurri sauce, and watermelon seeds. It was delicious!
The rock fish, gluten-free and vegan bread, and the perfectly portioned pecan-mousse pie were delicious and perfectly filling. It was a wonderful lunch!
Having the opportunity to have lunch at the Four Seasons Hotel and to meet Tess Masters was amazing and I loved learning from Tess. These past few months I’ve been learning a lot about the healing power of food and her words took what I had learned up to that point to another level. I appreciated her wisdom and her tips for making a perfect smoothie!