"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious" ~ Albert Einstein

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Acai/Maqui Berry Bowl with Incan Warrior Energy Drink

One thing I have been enjoying about this new superfood trend Rebecca and I are on is all the new exotic foods to try, many of which I have never heard of before, like the Sacha Inchi seeds and Maca Powder that I already talked about in earlier blogs. They're always from faraway places like the Himalayan region for Goji Berries, or some high-altitude region in South America for Maca and, so on. 

This blog will cover a breakfast with two exotic fruits I also hadn’t heard of before: the Acai Berry and the Maqui Berry, as well as a drink with a real energy-kick! 

Acai and Maqui Berry Bowl

The Acai (Pronounced like Ahhhh-Sighhh-eeeeee) and Maqui berry both have a somewhat similar appearance to the blueberry and I think if you enjoy those, you’re going to love Acai and Maqui Berries. Although, they do both have their own characteristic flavor.

Both of these berries are antioxidant powerhouses, with a one-two knockout punch for any free radicals that dare cross paths with them.  Blueberries, which everybody knows are high in antioxidants, come in with an ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) score of 7000 per 100g. Acai comes in with a score of around 42,000 and Maqui Berries, which are the highest antioxidant containing fruit in the world, comes in with a score of 92,000.  Before you get too excited though, the ORAC scale is measured in vitro and has been dropped by the USDA for “insufficient evidence of biological significance”. Regardless, I don’t think a nutrient dense fruit could be a bad thing, could it?

This breakfast bowl is a pretty light breakfast, which I can’t eat every day, despite now being one of my favorites. I need something with a bit more protein on a daily basis. But, it really is delicious. It’s almost has a fruity ice cream like appeal to it, but it is very low in sugar.

It's a very slight modification to the Acai Bowl in Superfood Kitchen by Julie Morris.

Here are the ingredients:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 Tbsp Acai Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Maqui Powder
  • ¼ cup milk of choice (I used almond or hemp milk)
  • A bit of stevia for sweetness

Throw those guys into a food processor and mix.  Easy, Peasy!  I'll also sometimes throw some extra bananas and granola on top, along with some frozen blueberries.

I’ve also thrown in some Psyllium Husk for extra fiber and Maca powder for an energy kick, but I find the flavor is never quite as good with these guys included. Simple seems best, with this one.

I never thought I was the best photographer, but I guess I do okay in the outdoors.  Take 300 pictures per trip and you're bound to get something good, right?  But, this food photography is a bit more challenging.  For one, when the food is done, I just want to eat while the eat'n is good, ya know?  Then, the indoor lighting is always a challenge.  I also don't really have the patience for the setup to make the pictures look all nice, either.  I'm trying, though.

In the meantime, Rebecca helped me with these.  She's like a pro.  The first one with the Incan Warrior Energy Drink is my photo, which is clearly the least visually desirable .  The next two photos, which are much nicer, Rebecca took of another Acai-Maqui Berry bowl I made.  The last photo is of an Acai bowl (no Maqui here) Rebecca made a ways back.  Notice the color difference between the pure Acai bowl and the ones with Maqui Berry.  Maqui Berries have a deep purple pigment!

The recipe for the Incan Warrior Energy Drink is down below.


Acai and Maqui Berry Bowl with the Incan Warrior Energy Drink
Acai-Maqui Berry Bowl

Acai-Maqui Berry Bowl

Rebecca’s Acai Bowl

Incan Warrior Energy Drink

This drink would make a great coffee alternative. It sort of tastes like a dark chocolate latte, or something similar. Also, I think the Yerba Mate could be replaced with a caffeine-free alternative. I personally don’t do well with caffeine, so I plan on trying this again with Organic India’s Goto Kola Tulsi Tea, but I think any dark roasted, or earthy tea, would go well in this drink. The cacao and maca should provide plenty of energy without the caffeine, anyhow.

Also, for comparison with the fruits above, cacao comes in at 95,000 on the ORAC scale. Yikes! 

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp Cacao
1 Tbsp Maca Powder
1 Tbsp Yacon, or Agave, Syrup
1 Scoop Amazing Grass Chocolate Powder, or something similar
1 Cup Milk of Choice (I used hemp milk)
1 Cup brewed Yerba Mate

Simply combine ingredients in a blender and have at it.  If you don't get an energy kick from this guy, something is wrong  ;-)

UPDATE:  I recently made this with 1 Cup Peppermint Tulsi tea and 1/4 tsp Peppermint Extract, in place of the Yerba Mate.  This a delicious caffeine free alternative!

This recipe came from Navitas Naturals: Incan Warrior Smoothie 

Ingredient Highlight - Maqui Berry!
The Maqui Berry is a staple of the Mapuche Indians in Chile.  Is it a coincidence that the Mapuche Indians are some of the longest-living people in the world?  Perhaps ;-)  As I mentioned above already, Maqui Berries are the highest known antioxidant rich fruit in the world, at 92,000 ORAC pts per 100g.  The Maqui Berry is particularly strong in two antioxidants of the flavonoid variety - polyphenols and anthocyanins.  Studies indicate these help repair and protect DNA.  Additionally, studies show that anthocyanins are beneficial when it comes to anti-aging effects, since it helps to reduce oxidative stress, as well as improve brain function.  Maqui Berries are also rich in Vitamin C, minerals and help to fight inflammation.   Did I mention they are delicious too!**

**Julie Morris, Superfood Kitchen

2 comments:

  1. This sounds delicious! A light, healthy way to start the day. Can't wait to try it!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks! It really does make for a yummy breakfast. Hope you enjoy it!

    ReplyDelete