Sunrise Daiquiri Smoothie

Today is the first day of the rest of my life. For such a cliché moment, it doesn’t feel all that dramatic. I even feel pretty silly just typing that phrase. Yesterday’s graduation was a whirlwind of chaos, dehydration, disappointment, sunburn, and (despite it all) delicious food. Maybe how it all played out should have only been expected, given that they were asking a group of 3,000 22-year-olds to sit in the middle of a football field in 80 degree weather in black gowns and heavy hoods as they read each of those 3,000 names and honors aloud – in addition to many drawn-out speeches. Admittedly, it was a poorly executed ceremony. It took 2 solid hours just to award the degrees. Still, I can’t muster up pride in association with my fellow graduates, and I don’t think the poorly run ceremony is any excuse for their behavior – out of 3,000, a scant 100 of us remained by the very end (yes, they just got up and walked out as soon as they were handed their diploma holders), and I can’t even begin to estimate how few were still fully clothed in their graduate regalia as they recessed out of the stadium. Yes, it was hot and long and miserable, but this is your graduation for pete’s sake! For all of the “Pomp and Circumstance” surrounding what was supposed to be The Big Day…I felt oddly like I was back in kindergarten. I guess things don’t really change, huh?

Regardless, today still feels somewhat special. I’m not a college student anymore. I have a diploma (well, I have a diploma cover – the diploma will be mailed in a few months). To commemorate this special new path unfolding in my proverbial and cheesy journey, I thought it appropriate to tell you about this absolutely delicious Sunrise Daiquiri Smoothie (you know, like the Sunrise Smoothie, the sun is also rising in a new chapter of my life! I know, I know, I’m beyond corny. I can’t help it). It’s non-alcoholic, but I tried to mimic the flavors of a fruity cocktail in it to add an edge to the otherwise sweet flavors.

And let me tell you, this is one seriously tasty smoothie! It’s citrusy, the perfect temperature and consistency, and all around a great choice for the morning to perk you up and get you ready for the day. There are only 2 things that would make this smoothie even more-out-of-this-world: first, a VitaMix to totally pulverize the coconut flakes, which in my blender remained a little chunkier than I would have liked; second, a layered effect making first an orange and then a strawberry smoothie in the finished glass to produce a gorgeously marbled effect that would really remind you of a true sunrise. Another example of how the Martha Stewart gene is somewhat lacking in my DNA. I do have a goal this summer to work on my presentation/plating/photography skills, though, so maybe you’ll start seeing cutesy things like swirled smoothies in the near future. For now, the smoothie is just plain old pink, and it’s in just a plain old glass, photographed against a plain old wooden desk backdrop, but I like it. A lot. And I hope you do, too.

One Year Ago: Chicken & Egg Soup

Sunrise Daiquiri Smoothie
This (virgin!) morning beverage is alive with fruity and citrusy flavors, with just the slightest edgy undertone from the rum extract and a silent-but-deadly-nutritious component masked by all of the deliciousness of the other ingredients. No protein powder required.

Yield: 1 serving
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes

The Ingredients
1 tablespoon shredded coconut
¾ cup frozen strawberries
1 container Orange Vanilla Chobani Champions
½ banana, chunked
½ cup unsweetened almond milk
scant ¼ teaspoon rum extract1
1 tablespoons ground flax meal
zest of ½ small orange

The Method
Combine all of the ingredients in a well-powered blender, starting with the coconut and strawberries to give them the most contact with the blade (as these will be the most challenging to puree completely). Blend until you reach the desired consistency and transfer contents to a glass.

1I don’t have a measuring spoon for ⅛ teaspoon, so I just tried to get as close as I could to that small measurement using the ¼ teaspoon. I didn’t find it to be overpowering in the slightest, though, so even if you do have that small of a measurement you might still want to just use the larger one and not fill it all the way up. I aimed for half-way, of course, but ¾ full is probably closer to what I actually achieved.

I also want to wish everyone who is celebrating a very happy Mother’s Day! I hope you have some wonderful food-filled plans set for the rest of the day. I won’t be cooking (probably a good call – after the hectic events of the past week between moving out and graduation, I’m pooped!), but I will be going out to eat with L’s family and then hopefully stopping by my grandparent’s house tonight to see them and other family members who couldn’t make it to graduation yesterday. It should be a good day!

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