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“Real Food” Protein Custard

April 2, 2010

My breakfast every day for the past few weeks has been pretty consistent. It’s chocolaty, creamy, and is probably my favorite breakfast or after workout snack.

I can’t even begin to describe fluffy this is! There’s no need for expensive protein powder, and if you don’t use Amazing grass, the shake is pretty economically. When you get burnt out of oats, the rich chocolate soft-serve ice cream consistency really gets you out of bed. (Seriously. It’s the only reason I’m motivated to wake up! haha)

I use xanthen gum to thicken this shake/ice cream hybrid. I see nothing wrong with xanthen gum, but many people don’t consider it a “real food” and it falls under criticism. (cough, Mikey Pollan, cough) If you choose to eliminate it, as I have many times, you will have a luscious and thick shake. It just won’t have an ice cream consistency.

killer clam Did you know?

Xanthen gum is a natural thickener (a polysaccharide) derived from decomposing corn? It has a funky smell, but don’t let that scare you off. It works wonders!

And remember: everything in moderation.

Ingredients

frozen banana cubes ice cubes amazing grass chocolate cocoa powder egg white cooked squash

Frozen Chocolate Protein Custard

  • 1/2- 1  banana, frozen in chunks
  • 4 ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup cooked buttercup or kabocha squash
  • 1/2 cup pasteurized egg white
  • 1.5 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 cups baby spinach, if desired
  • 1/2 tsp xanthen gum, if desired

In a blender, crush the ice cubes and banana with a high speed setting. Use one full banana for a sweeter result.

Why? This “crush first” step makes super thick, delicious smoothies possible in any blender.

Add the squash, egg white, Amazing grass, cocoa, nutritional yeast, spinach, and xanthen gum. Blend for about a minute, then spoon into a bowl.

Why?

  • Squash= soluble fiber, vitamins, and bulk.
  • Amazing Grass= vitamins, probiotics
  • Nutrition Yeast= Energizing B Vitamins
  • Spinach=Iron and more nutrition
  • Xanthen gum= fluffy thickening power

Top with 2 tbsp granola and 1/2-1 tbsp nut butter or tahini. I also add some coffee beans to mine- so good!

*If you need to omit this, add an extra tsp of cocoa

Ready to fall in love all over again?

imageimage

Left is without tahini and granola, right is with tahini and granola toppings. Look at that fiber, fat, protein and vitamins!

It packs a nutritional punch and is really delicious. Don’t be afraid of the egg whites, they’re pasteurized plus the whites of the egg have antiseptic qualities.

In fact, I’ve used raw whites from local eggs (yes, I trust them more) and I’m still alive! Those smoothies were super fluffy.

Why don’t I use the yolk? I love egg yolks with all my heart, especially runny over a salad. Unfortunately, you have a much greater chance of becoming sick from a raw yolk than a raw white. If I use whole eggs, my dog eats the yolks or I save them to bake dog treats.

So don’t be afraid to try this! No natural or artificial sweeteners, no isolated protein, just wholesome ingredients. (and some xanthen gum, but you guys can duke out that battle on your own. ;-))

~~~

So. I’m all better I think!

After work, I walked around downtown Saratoga in in beautiful weather for a few hours and then met a friend for coffee and to go exploring. Really, I was procrastinating coming home.

Side note: [iced coffee + honey = LOVE]

Finally, we parted ways and I made my way back to the house. When I got home, I logged onto Cornell’s admissions site and…. I got in!

image

MaymayMar08 251

My dad and I, on our visit to Cornell. Oh Ithaca autumn!

To tell you the truth, I have no idea where I’m headed.

Cornell is so prestigious and the education is fabulous. It’s close and really beautiful.

Clemson is in the south where it’s nice and warm. It would be a blast, and they have a Culinology program (the science of cooking), which I’m really looking forward to.

Cal Poly and Penn State are great too.

I have a lot of thinking to do over the next month.

I’m nervous but excited. I think next year is going to be great. I’m not letting any other disappointments or petty high school things bring me down anymore because I’m so fortunate! For God, for my amazing parents, for my best friends, for my favorite teachers, for the wonderful schools, and for the supportive blogging community… This is the end of bad moods.

The sun is shining, and I’m a happy girl!

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32 Comments leave one →
  1. April 2, 2010 10:06 am

    CONGRATS!!!! Yay!!! So happy for you!
    And if you went to Clemson, you would be like an hour or less away from me… and we have the most gorgeous weather down here… just saying 😉
    For real though, I know you will make the right decision! At least you have options! And never forget that you have the blogging community out here supporting you, no matter what you do. You are going to do great things and have such a bright future ahead girlie!
    Love ya!

    • April 2, 2010 9:06 pm

      Ooooh! That would be awesome. We could meet up and cook together all the time!! 😛

  2. April 2, 2010 11:42 am

    Congrats on your acceptance! It’s really a great honor and I know you will enjoy whatever you choose because it will be right for you.
    The smoothie/ice cream/delishishness sounds aboslutely amazing! Why do you always tempt me to make more squash (not that I needed convincing) :P? I do have two questions, though. First, do you find that crushing the ice makes the smoothie too watery? When I put it in first It ends up turning to water after the rest of the blending. Also, I’m vegan so I cannot use the egg white. Do you think this would change the consistency any? Should I substitute anything?

    Thanks for a wonderful recipe and congrats again!
    Have a lovely day!
    xox

    • April 2, 2010 9:05 pm

      For the egg white, sub almond milk. The ice shouldn’t water it down as long as the rest of your ingredients are cold. It really helps to use xanthen gum because it suspends the water and keeps it from that ice crystal consistency.

  3. April 2, 2010 12:53 pm

    Congrats!!! That is so great. Sometimes making decisions can be so nerve-racking!

  4. April 2, 2010 1:39 pm

    How exciting.. hard choices, but you’ll end up exactly where you should be. And I made a version of your custard tonight.. so good!

  5. April 2, 2010 5:45 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS!!
    California is wonderful. 😉 I love it there. People are definitely more laid-back than in the East Coast (coming from a girl who grew up in Cali and now goes to boarding school in the East Coast)
    One of my best friends just got into, and is going to go to, Cornell….

    Such a decision, but a good one 🙂 Keep us posted 😉

  6. April 2, 2010 6:00 pm

    eee, you GO girl!! I am SOOO happy for you!! Congratulations for all your hard work. Really paid off!! Whichever decision you make, you are bound for success 🙂
    Oh, yeah, the food! The custard looks delicious, too 😛 I love that you give an Alton-esque vibe.

  7. April 2, 2010 6:02 pm

    Congrats to you beautiful girl!!! 🙂

  8. April 2, 2010 6:18 pm

    Congratulations!!! My offer of kitchen + laundry room use still stands if you come to Cornell. And you’d have me as a food sci resource 🙂 Does that make up for the weather here? 😉

    • April 2, 2010 9:03 pm

      So excited savvy Julie! When will you be in Ithaca? I want to make a visit this month, and it would be awesome if we could meet for lunch/dinner

  9. April 2, 2010 7:02 pm

    i think u are a bright girl. and i think that u ought not to put a whole lots of pressure on yourself about the decision. u know what? u could very well choose the “wrong” one…but so what? ….unless we are all saints and godly figures, there is no no way we will ever know what the right thing to do it…so i dont think u can do any wrong…all the schools seem right and when u do decide, all u can do is make the best decision u can at that very moment…u and your dad look lovely.

  10. danielle permalink
    April 2, 2010 8:40 pm

    Congratulations! So happy for you!

  11. April 2, 2010 8:41 pm

    yummmmm that looks sooo delish…since winter is definitely coming to a close i was wondering what type of squashes u eat in the summer? I have yet to have a kabocha becuz they dont sell it at the market around here 😦 but i will have to try looking harder next winter!

    -Lena

    • April 2, 2010 9:03 pm

      Lena, Buttercup works awesome, butternut is decent and delicata is okay. I bought a bunch while it was in season, cooked and froze it. Now I’m using up those stashes, but I have a recipe coming up using sweet potatoes… They’re much more available!

  12. April 2, 2010 8:44 pm

    I vote Cornell! I actually had an inkling it would work out for you…I haven’t decided yet where I will go, but I’ve basically narrowed it down to two unless I get off a waitlist.

    • April 2, 2010 8:59 pm

      Thank you so much Caroline! I know you will be happy wherever you end up… what two are you deciding between? (I’ll e-mail you!)

  13. April 2, 2010 9:57 pm

    Congratulations on getting accepted into Cornell that is amazing! I know where your coming from girl, college decisions are pretty much the only thing that is stressing me out right now. I still cant decide and I just want to make sure that I end up at the right place for me. Unfortunately most of the school’s I applied to don’t offer nutritional science as a major, so if i went to the only school that does it is a whopping four hours away!

    Right now im kind of having to make a career choice too and its a lot of pressure. Hang in there and enjoy the weather 🙂

  14. Erica H permalink
    April 2, 2010 9:59 pm

    I went to Ithaca College, and the town/city of Ithaca make up for any icky weather!! The people there are FABULOUS, and it is a TOTAL foodie city. More restaurants per capita than New York! So many of them are vegetarian/vegan too … awesome farmer’s market .. plus the Cornell campus is gorgeous. After 4.5 years there I still loved it, and I miss it every day!!

  15. April 2, 2010 11:22 pm

    CONGRATS on the acceptance!! Cornell- wow, you’re a smart girl!! I have a ton of friends at Penn State, and they absolutely LOVE it. Little tip though: if you hate the cold, I wouldn’t go somewhere freezing. I transferred after my freshman year, and a huge reason I disliked my old school was the constantly rainy and cold weather! Good luck with everything, I know you’ll make a great choice!

  16. April 3, 2010 12:16 am

    Congrats Congrats! That is amazing news! You do have some thinking to do but at least you have choices! And great choices those are!

    And about the smoothie… wow. I am trying that TOMORROW morning! I can’t wait! Sounds absolutely amazing! yum!

  17. April 3, 2010 3:26 am

    Congrats on yet another acceptance letter!! You are amazing!! 🙂 The pic of you and your daddy is so sweet.

    Your custard looks awesome. I love the pics of all the ingredients, great touch to this wonderful post! 🙂

  18. April 3, 2010 8:00 am

    big decisions to make! but exciting! that breakfast looks so good. I don’t think I can do the egg whites though, I think mentally I couldn’t handle it knowing they were in there.

  19. April 4, 2010 12:58 am

    I still have protein powder in the house so I Did: banana frozen, ice cubes, strawberries, choc.hemp protein powder, and milk 🙂 not thick enough, but delish!

  20. April 4, 2010 10:47 am

    Congratulations on getting in to Cornell!! I know it’s in cold Ithaca, but all my friends who went there have LOVED it! (I had over 5 high school friends attend Cornell, and each and every one of them had a blast) I grew up in Hong Kong where it’s WARM like california so it says alot. 🙂

    I’m sure you’ll make the right decision. Make sure that you go with your gutt and your heart. Pick the school that you think will support you in ALL your interests, no matter what direction (i.e. major) you think you may go!

  21. justaudrey permalink
    April 5, 2010 5:17 am

    Congrats on your acceptance! yay!

    I love the little clamshell guy. Your posts are so cute. Oh, and that’s a great pic of you and your dad.

    I know what you mean about the college decision thing. I’m in that boat right now. Ahh! So much uncertainty.

  22. April 5, 2010 9:47 am

    Yay, Meagan! You are so blessed to have such great college opportunities!

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