Lila, Chop!

Annabanana Choco

Gluten-free High-protein Sugar-free
Christina Hallalulu

One of my first requests for Lila, Chop! came from Anna, my best friend from college. She asked me to post a smoothie recipe for beginners, and I was more than happy to oblige. I owe a lot to Anna (Mumsi Hallaulu), whose support, humour, and presence have enriched my life in Switzerland more than I could ever quantify. (Mums is the Swedish equivalent for yummy, and times spent together are mums indeed!) That's why this recipe is dedicated to her, the Ananabanana Chocolate Smoothie for Beginners.

Anna and Christina
Mumsi + Skuttis = Happy Hallalulus.

amount name
scoop Gaspari Nutrition Myofusion Elite Protein Series, Chocolate
scoop Arbonne Essentials chocolate protein shake mix, or
scoops any chocolate-flavoured protein powder
ml any vegan or low-fat milk (I used Isola bio organic coco rice milk)
chopped frozen bananas
tbsp Bob's Red Mill shredded coconut unsweetened
pot Bio joghurt natur
tbsp Sunfood Superfood organic raw cacao powder
tbsp Lily's dark chocolate baking chips, or
tbsp raw cacao nibs
raw fresh banana
handful ice (optional)
Servings: (Total Calories: .)
Anna and Lila
Anna & Lila.

Whilst staying at Anna's, I had the bizarre experience of witnessing the results of her grocery shopping when she came home carrying two bags full-to-bursting, with nothing but plain yoghurt, milk chocolate and several kilos worth of fresh bananas. I just really felt like having bananas, she said.

Having spent most of my life detesting the taste, smell and sight of them (thanks to being overfed bananas as a child), I found this a little incredulous. But as her best friend, it was my duty to honour her tastes and to create a banana experience that both of us would find delicious enough to share—thus this recipe serves two. That's why when I decided to post my first recipe dedication to her, it had to consist of the three ingredients of her weekly grocery shopping, and be simple enough for smoothie-making-beginners.

time instruction
Put aside the raw fresh banana, chocolate chips and shredded coconut for garnishing last.
Blend all other ingredients (including frozen bananas) together in a high-speed blender until smooth and creamy.
Pour smoothie into two glasses and garnish with fresh chopped banana, shredded coconut, and chocolate chips.
5 min Skål, as we say in Swedish for cheers... and mums!

Banana & Recipe Tips

I've found that using frozen fruit is so much better than fresh fruit in smoothies as it gives it a more ice-cream like consistency and experience. That's why I always make sure to chop up bananas (or any other fruit) the night before and freeze them in zip-lock bags. Note that if you don't chop them up before freezing them, they will become impossible to blend, and might break your blender altogether!

For an even richer banana taste, try using a banana-flavoured protein powder. I have yet to try one, but I have heard there is a delicious one out there from Myprotein.

Finally, for a leaner recipe, use low-fat plain yoghurt. I normally use 0% Greek yoghurt, but as this recipe is dedicated to Anna (Low fat? Yeah right), I used the normal, full-fat version.

Bananas in a blender
Frozen bananas in a blender.

Pimp My Smoothie Tip

People often ask me how I manage to decorate my smoothies, and if I was taught this at hotel school during some art de la table course. It's far simpler than you think, so I'm going to give you a tip on how to pimp up your smoothie decorations: Simply dip the smoothie glasses in shredded coconut. The trick to get the coconut to stick to the rims of the glasses is to dip the part you want the coconut to stick to in a sticky substance, such as honey. Pour honey, agave, pancake syrup or any sugar-free syrup onto a paper towel. Pour the coconut onto a separate towel. Dip the rims of the glass in honey, then dip them in coconut.

Voila! Decorated glasses.

Decorating glasses with coconut
How to decorate glasses with coconut.