Here is a thought on an over abundance of fruit, something I am often guilty of during the summer. It's so good and so cheap, I just go crazy! And then a few days later, I'm trying to figure out what to do with it before it goes bad. There is an easy fix for me that ensures none of it goes to waste, and equally important, it doesn't require a whole lot of time or effort. I just wash it, cut it up, and freeze it for smoothies.
Me and junior love to have fruit smoothies for breakfast or lunch. I'm not a big fan of fruit juice, I really want my kiddo to drink plenty of water, with sweet drinks only occasionally. But I feel a little better about smoothies, they actually have fiber and good stuff in them, not just sugar. Usually, I just keep a bag of frozen mixed berries on hand, but when the opportunity arises, making up your own blend is great! So a couple of days ago, I cut up a pineapple, a cantaloupe, and washed about half a pint of blueberries and the same amount of raspberries. I divided them equally into hard plastic ziploc containers (I don't like bags, I'm too lazy to wash them so they only get used once), and stacked them in the freezer. If you do it this way, the fruit will freeze into a solid mass, so if you have a problem with that, spread them on cookie sheets to freeze through, and then package. The fruit I used yielded 12 portions, I would guess about 1 1/2 cups each. As far as cost, I would say it was about $6 worth, so .50 per portion, not bad.
I can't really be prescriptive about how to make a smoothie, it's pretty much fool proof. I let the fruit sit on the counter top while I make a cup of coffee, so it softens just a bit. Put it in the blender with some form of liquid, usually milk, and a serving of yogurt, blend, add more liquid if it's too thick to drink, and you're on your way to a healthy breakfast. The blend we had this morning used some OJ that needed to get used up, and I also like to add some powdered milk, which is a nice source of calcium, and lends some creaminess. The OJ was perfect with the cantaloupe, it had a really nice flavor. If you have fresh spinach on hand, throw some in. You won't taste it, I promise.
It's kind of funny, I love cantaloupe, but the taste of it in anything other than its original form doesn't appeal. So tonight I was checking out Merissa's blog, Little House on the Prairie Living, and she made cantaloupe butter! I might have to give it a shot and get over my bias. Check her out! She's a Piedmont girl too!