Unsung Foods of Adolescence

And I’m not sure who to credit with this one! And though I have a long life yet to live, I will be forever resentful of my cherry-less, coconut-less, olive-less youth. Well I blame myself for the olives. My parents, they tried! But I would hear nor taste nothing of an olive. But let’s explore the cherries and coconuts, and see if we can’t unearth the root of their unsung delicious lyrics.

Cherries: plump, red, sweet, tart, and a delicious sign of summer. Minus the pit (but most good fruit has seeds and/or pits…read: summer peaches), cherries seem to have all the qualities any child or teen would adore. For me, I think my mistaken impression of them started at Friendly’s (are those still around??). Yep, the maraschino cherry. Not red, but a neon red. Not the diverse tastes of sweetness, tartness and sour, but just sugar. And not even sugar, because after all who doesn’t like sugar, but that syrupy aftertaste sugar. I don’t know, maybe I just never had a good quality maraschino cherry, if such a thing even exists! All I know is that the one I had was traumatic, and robbed me of a youth filled with delicious cherries! But, I’m making up for all that now. Tis the season!

How about coconuts? Until recently, you couldn’t dare me to eat coconut. So where did this scarring begin? I suspect somewhere in the aisles of a corner store hidden in the good old Almond Joy. Or was it an Almond Joy-esque bon bon? Anyway, that hyper sweetened coconut paste.. Or coconut “flavored” paste, gave rise to a couple decades worth of coconut avoidance. Now, eating raw and learning more about superfoods and the natural delicious taste of coconuts (even in all their omega 6ness…more on that later!), they are among my favorites! And I can’t bear the thought of a chocolate or muesli without them!

So as we scuttle through the food labyrinth that we exist in, before writing off foods we may have learned to dislike growing up–especially raw, unrefined and unprocessed ones–let’s give them another go. In our own ways, without the commercialization and without that lovely SAD influence.

Ode to Cherries and Coconut Smoothie
2 cups cherries, pitted
1 cup water
1/4 c hemp seeds
2 T unsweetened coconut shreds
2 T cacao nibs
1 T raw honey

Blend away! Enjoy! Yummmm!

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