“You look like it’s Christmas and your birthday at the same time” said Stacey as I opened the UPS box. “I feel like it is” I replied as I lifted out my shiny new red Vitamix BarBoss. I think I even squealed.
Now you should know a couple of things about me to appreciate how unusual this reaction is. I don’t like to shop. Acquiring new things more often fills me with a sense of overwhelm than satisfaction. I do not normally feel deep attachment to kitchen appliances. But this was special.
I’m fairly addicted to green drinks and smoothies and I’d just finished burning through my second Black and Decker blender in 16 months. I wanted something that would last and something that would do the job. The Barboss promised to be both. And it’s kept its promise. At four years old it’s still going strong. Plus for the last 6 months the Barboss has been in near-commercial use in a community kitchen. In short? It rocks!
Editor’s Note: To Check out The Vitamix Barboss deals at Amazon and to view the accessories available, please use this link to view the page.
Here are some pros and cons:
|Strong||Price can be prohibitive at $400-$500|
|Long lasting – 15 year warranty||Plastic pitcher – I’d prefer metal so that I could blend hot soup in it without fear of chemicals leaching from the plastic|
|No lumps – can handle nuts and hard vegetables and bring them to creamy smoothness|
|Automatic shut-off so you don’t have to stand around and listen to it|
|Has lighter and stronger settings so as not to ‘overblend’ a mixed drink|
|Can be used to blend compost from food scraps to use in the garden|
|Makes great ice cream|
This blender has been used for smoothies, salad dressings, ice cream, grinding flour, making nut milk, blending buckwheat pancake batter and more. First I’ll give some guidelines for making yummy green smoothies. Then I’ll share two of our favorite recipes.
Green Smoothie Tips
- Start easy. If you don’t usually juice or drink your greens, start with a leaf or two of greens and make the rest something yummy like fruit and nuts.
- Be creative with your greens. I’ve used kale, swiss chard, collards, turnip greens, radish greens, arugula, mustard greens (spicy!), beet tops, carrot tops, sorrel, dandelion, parsley, cilantro, or even lettuce. Wild harvested dandelion leaves are great for the liver and make one of my favorite spring tonic smoothies.
- Be creative with your fruits. Apples or grapes are often my first choice because of their concentrated sweetness but I’ve also used strawberries, bananas, pineapple, oranges, kiwis, lemon, and raisins. Dried fruit is great when other fruit is out of season or you want something that won’t spoil.
- Use organic and local if possible. Our planet is having a hard time. Let’s be nice to the microorganisms, plants, animals, and people and buy from our local farmers. Speak with them about their methods. Let them know you value their time and care about their health, too.
- Involve your kids. Children are more likely to eat it if they helped make it. They can wash, cut, and feed things to the blender. Not sure that kids can use knives to cut? You might enjoy this article https://parentcoaching.org/archives/616 at parentcoaching.org about how my girls were safely using knives when they were very young.
Classic Kale Green Smoothie
- 1 medium bunch of kale (~1/3 pound)
- handful of raisins (~ ½ cup)
- two handfuls of sunflower seeds (~1 cup)
- one clove of garlic (immune boosting)
- Bonus – kombucha or water kefir (~1 cup)
Load the Barboss with the leafy parts of the washed kale then add the stems. Loosely add remaining ingredients. Place the lid on tightly, set blender on ‘30’, and walk away.
Strawberry Ice Cream
- 2 cups frozen strawberries (bananas, blueberries or any frozen fruit)
- 1/2 cup raw milk or cream (pasteurized works fine too)
Load the Barboss with the strawberries and milk. You can add sweetener like maple syrup if you wish. Use the tamper to push the strawberries in again and again until they are blended to perfection. Tip: If you’re dairy free check out this video on on strawberry and banana ice cream using just strawberries and bananas.
This is a guest post by Kassandra Brown who loves cooking with her children and hopes you will too. She lives in rural Missouri at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage where she is creating a new Parent Coaching business to help create a more sustainable, happy, and just world.