Mango Smoothie Bowl
I looooove a smoothie bowl, but this Mango Smoothie Bowl really surprised me, being one of the first things that I wanted to recreate from my trip to the Netherlands. Last week I went on a trip with my mom to Amsterdam and, being a couple of foodies, we usually plan our trips around what we’re going to eat. Normally, I would have a bunch of restaurants picked out ahead of time and then we just plan to do whatever is nearby those restaurants. Food first, sights second. This is how I like to travel. I don’t enjoy being in crowded, touristy spots anyway. I’d rather roam around the quieter areas and soak up the cultural vibe of a place; bathe in the unique sounds, light, and shade of foreign trees.
Since there were just two of us on this trip, we winged it a little more than I normally do. With two, it’s easy to make decisions, mobilize, keep track of one another and get a table, even at busy times. I give my mom credit for finding our favorite (if we’re judging by times visited) restaurant on this trip, which was around the corner from our hotel and casually named “Corner Bakery”. Normally, I would not repeat a restaurant visit on a week long trip (there are so many places to try!) but we actually ate at this place a whopping 4 mornings, IN A ROW. No regrets, but this is a personal record I am pretty sure will not ever be broken.
I got hooked on acai smoothie bowls last summer and if you’ve had a really good one, you’ll know that they are a combination of flavors and textures that is like nothing else. I started making the acai bowls for myself at home using a recipe I found online, the base of which was frozen bananas, with acai powder. For this reason, I now always have a bag of frozen bananas in my freezer. I love bananas but sometimes forget about bananas. You know? There’s so much to keep track of and they’re very quiet. And then I notice them and they’re getting all spotty and I’m not going to eat the whole bunch today, nor have time to bake something. So I cut them up and throw them on a cookie sheet in the freezer until I remember later in the day that they are in there, and then put them in a zip-lock bag. Viola! Ready for smoothies, or nice-cream or even thaw them out and make bread another day.
Today I used them as the base for this Mango Smoothie Bowl, which was the first thing I ordered at Corner Bakery. (O.K., fine. The croissant was first; bowl, second.) I liked the way they served it in a shallow bowl so there’s more surface area for toppings. I’m all about toppings. I believe theirs had coconut cream in it and believe me, I KNOW…that sounds amazing. The problem is yesterday I happened to eat not one, but two pieces of coconut ice-cream cake, so I thought maybe I’d lighten up on the coconut cream today and use bananas for the creamy factor. But if you are feeling like cream of coconut is a good idea (like I might tomorrow), then you could sub it for the coconut water or do a half/half thing. We’re not baking here so feel free to make it how you like it.
The only other thing that would make this better is homemade granola. But I just got back from vacation and thrown into holiday weekend so just unpacking and grocery shopping was a challenge. I used Purely Elizabeth Ancient Grain Granola, which is one of my favorite store-bought brands. (I also adore Sheila’s Crunchy Delight, which is a local brand available at the market). You don’t want to skip the nut butter on top, if you’re into that kind of thing, you could use peanut butter or any kind you like, but it really adds something Extra to the bowl, and I really like Extra. A note about coconut: this Bob’s Red Mill Unsweetened Flaked Coconut beats the pants off of regular shredded coconut. Just sayin’.
I hope you have fun making these! Send pics!
P.S. This strawberry towel is hand screen-printed by my friend Rachael at Open Eyes Press in Baltimore and available online. Her vintage inspired kitchen linens are not only GORGEOUS but incredibly useful and washable.
- 1 Mango, peeled, cut into pieces and frozen
- 1 Banana, peeled, cut into pieces and frozen
- 1/2-3/4 cup coconut water
- Granola, coconut flakes, almond butter, various cut fruit (I used banana, kiwi, pineapple, strawberries, blackberries, grapes)
- Place mango, banana and 1/2 cup coconut water in blender or smoothie maker. Blend until smooth, adding more coconut water until desired consistency.
- Spoon mango mixture into shallow bowls. Top with granola, fruit, coconut and almond butter.