Ugh! That’s pretty much all I can say about this time of year, clearly my absolute least favorite! I don’t know about you guys, but I am decidedly not a fan of this grey, dark, wet-and-cold (in German, we have a word for this: “nasskalt”, which translates to “wetcold”) January and February weather, where winter just doesn’t seem to want to end. At least in November and December you have Christmas to look forward to, which makes it so much more bearable! And now, it’s supposed to get even colder next week… brrrr!
So, what to do? Most days, I pretty much resort to hurrying home after work, getting into my sweatpants and beloved woolen sweater, and snuggling up on the couch with a movie or series and some good food. Then I fall asleep on the couch around 9pm while watching the movie, wake up at 11pm, and decide it’s time for bed. I’m not kidding, this is unfortunately 100% accurate.
These dreary days are energy-draining, and people tend to get sick. The amount of sniffing I hear every day on my morning commute is concerning - especially because I’m stuck in very close quarters with those carriers of viruses and bacteria and whatnot! Again, the German language offers a perfect word for those people: “Bazillenschleuder”, which I’d roughly translate to “bacteria catapult”. Ah, German. You rock!
So, long story short, it’s undeniable that we all need to boost both our energy levels and immune systems, so instead of swallowing countless vitamin pills, why not try something distinctly more delicious? I found the recipe for this smoothie on the awesome food blog Cookie & Kate, and adapted it to my taste. I never actually thought of using citrus fruits in a smoothie, apart from a squeeze of lemon or lime juice. But here, we’re just blending the whole thing (minus the peel, of course), for maximum vitamin yield! This smoothie tastes like holidays and sunshine in a glass, and a little bit like those ice creams I used to get at the public pool in the summer… Anyway, on your next trip to the supermarket, grab a bag of clementines and give this one a try!
Immune-boosting clementine smoothie
(for 1 tall glass - adapted from Cookie & Kate)
1 cup (250ml) vanilla yogurt (plain will work, too)
1/2 cup (125ml) Alpro Coconut (if you can’t get this, maybe try coconut milk)
1 tbsp dried goji berries
Peel the clementines and remove the worst of the white stuff (you’ll strain the smoothie before serving, but the white stuff just adds bitterness). Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until combined. There will be rests of the clementines’ skins, so I would always strain through a fine sieve, unless you like to chew on that stuff!
What’s your favorite way to boost your energy and immune system in winter?