Back in January, I participated in my first juice fast. It wasn’t anything excessively long or crazy, just a 3-day juice fast to reset the palate (much-needed after enjoying a few too many holiday goodies). It was a great experience, one I’m looking forward to repeating again at some point this year. I was feeling so good by day three that I was tempted to continue on but wanted to complete the program as written (and let’s be real here, I missed chewing so much that the idea of a simple baked sweet potato had me salivating like a dog).
I learned a lot about myself during those three days, one of which is that I really enjoy the flavour of juices with beets in them. Go figure. They are sweet and earthy and lend a lovely flavour to any juice they’re included in. So, I’ve continued having juices regularly since the fast, many of which contain beets. Partly because beets are awesome for you, full of cancer-fighting antioxidants and rich with nutrients, but also partly because I’ve become a closet beet junkie. There, I said it.
I’ve even gotten the kids involved, trying to get a nutrient-rich juice into them on a semi-regular basis. They can always recognize the beet juices, and love to joke about who’s bathroom by-products are going to turn pink after drinking one. The thing about beets is, that beautiful rich colour they have is so intense that it will stain if not removed quickly. Fingers, counters, cutting boards, and if you’re really unlucky, that brand new white shirt you decided to wear while cutting them (come on rookie, smarten up)! So, I’m pretty diligent about washing hands and cutting boards as soon as I’m done handling them. I think you can see where I’m going with this.
Spoiler Alert: Children + beet juice = something resembling a crime scene.
Anyone with children can relate to the fact that it feels almost impossible to keep your home clean and your belongings intact. This tends to get a little better as they get older, but even with a tween and school-aged child, I often find myself muttering “This is why we can’t have nice things!” Add a couple of animals to the mix and it almost seems like an exercise in futility. Still I try. After all, as a mother, it feels natural to regularly straddle the border to insanity.
While we discussed what to make for dinner, my husband made a beautiful jug of beet juice for the family to have before dinner. My girls insist on drinking their juices with a straw. This straw often gets used to stir the juice, draw pictures in the foam and whatever other things kids think of to make a 5-minute task take 5 times as long. To their credit, I’ve yet to see them joust with the straws, which is something I could totally see myself and my brother doing as kids, so I’m calling this a win.
While sipping my juice, I went back to chopping up some veggies for dinner. Then all got quiet for a moment. Any parent knows, when your kids get quiet it’s time to investigate. This brief moment of silence was followed by the last thing in the world I wanted to hear after handing my children glasses of bright red stain-inducing liquid. “Uh Oh!”
I turned back to them in time to see the massacre that had just occurred all over my kitchen table. Bright red liquid dripping from the table, pooling on the fabric-covered chair and flowing down to the floor. She not only knocked over her glass but had done so in such a spectacular fashion that droplets dripped down the wall behind her. Had there been any knives near her, my first instinct would have been to call 9-1-1. It most definitely resembled a crime scene.
We rushed over with paper towels, wet cloths and spray cleaner, ready to try to salvage what we could before the stains set in. Our dog, hearing the sudden commotion came running, knowing instinctively that there was some kind of food item she might be able to gobble up. As a lab-mix, Shilah’s not super picky when it comes to dropped food. Hell, she’s been known to eat tissues straight from the box if it is left within her reach. Much to her dismay, I quickly thought of the pink fur she would be sporting and coaxed her outside instead.
The good news is, you almost can’t tell it happened. I managed to get it off the floor and walls before it stained the grout and paint. Sure, the chair might have a slight pink tinge to it, but that can serve as a much-needed reminder for my darling girls that straws are NOT toys. Oh, who am I kidding? It won’t be long before they are fighting over the pink throne and the lesson is all but forgotten. No regrets though, it really was a great juice. Recipe below.
- 3 Beets, with their greens
- 4-5 Carrots
- 2 Lemons, skin removed
- 2-3 Apples
- 1 Cucumber, peeled if the skin is waxy
- Prepare your ingredients by cutting them into chunks that will fit through the spout of your juicer.
- Feed you ingredients through your juicer, then stir and enjoy.
*Fresh juices are best enjoyed right after juicing. If you intend to save for later, store in an airtight jar, filled as close to the lid as possible and refrigerate to reduce nutrient loss.
*If you don't have a juicer, you can make this in a high-speed blender, then squeeze through a nut bag or cheesecloth to remove the pulp. If you are going the blender route, just be sure to core your apples first.
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Feature image credit: Photo by Nagygyongyi via Pixabay