Cocktail: “A mixture of agents usually in solution that is taken or used together especially for medical treatment or diagnosis”
I made this drink a while ago when for some strange reason, I felt I needed some serious beta-carotene and vitamin C. I was feeling a bit under the weather and overworked, and really needed a nutrient boost. Carrots, mangos and oranges were the most obvious choice for me. All yellow and orange fruits and vegetables contain beta-carotene but I thought these particular three would work their magic on me in more ways than one. Carrots are naturally sweet to start with so they would mix well with the mango and oranges.
Off to the kitchen I went in my droopy state determined to revive myself with a newly-found tonic. My list of elixirs and tonics (i.e. Spice and Hearth Chocolate Elixir Pudding, Sunshine Nutrient Smoothie ) is pretty broad already, but this drink would be a blindingly orange drink with both bark and bite; plant-style.
I started with fresh carrots. I remember when I used to hate carrots. Now I eat them at least once a week, raw. You can buy the carrots already peeled in little bags; convenient that way. I stick with the carrots with peel only because I like them and the extra nutrients in the skin. But rest assured, carrot under the peel is the same color as the peel so you’ll get your beta-carotene either way. Not to0 many vegetables can make this bold claim.
The human body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A (retinol). Beta-carotene is a precursor of vitamin A. We need vitamin A for healthy skin and mucus membranes, our immune system, and good eye health and vision. Beta-carotene in itself is not an essential nutrient, but vitamin A is. Taking big doses of vitamin A can be toxic, but your body only converts as much vitamin A from beta-carotene as it needs. That means beta-carotene is considered a safer source of vitamin A.
Beta-carotene is an antioxidant. It protects the body from damaging molecules called free radicals. Free radicals damage cells through a process known as oxidation. Over time, this damage can lead to a number of chronic illnesses. There is good evidence that eating more antioxidants foods helps boost your immune system, protect against free radicals, and may lower your risk of heart disease and cancer. Source: Beta-carotene | University of Maryland Medical Center
Yellow and orange fruits and vegetables contain zeaxanthin, flavonoids, lycopene, potassium, vitamin C as well as beta-carotene (vitamin A). These nutrient-rich foods pulse our bodies in so many different ways, from our eyes to our bones.
- Aid in eye health and reduces the risk of macular degeneration of the eye
- Reduce the risk of prostate cancer
- Lower blood pressure
- Lower LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol)
- Promote healthy joints
- Promote collagen formation
- Fight harmful free radicals in the body
- Encourage pH balance of the body
- Boost immune system
- Build healthier bones by working with calcium and magnesium
To the fresh carrots, I dropped in some chopped mango and freshly squeezed orange juice. Blend and breathe. So fragrant and felt the healing already. I added a few other ingredients and poured into anxious glasses. I added a little extra zing by splashing in some fresh lemon juice, garnished with a soft leafy stalk from the inside of a bunch of celery, black pepper and sea salt. I had to step back and admire this orange beauty. This was a cocktail, a real cocktail, the kind that heals and generates good intentions.
One sip and I knew I had quite a little concoction; a delicious alcohol-free cocktail if you use it in that sense. I especially enjoyed this “cocktail” knowing that I didn’t have to worry about any side effects. No hangover in sight. Now that’s a mix no party or occasion should be without (effective remedy for a hangover too). Half way through my tonic I was feeling a heady reprieve, and ready to face the world again.
I hope you enjoy this delicious and healing drink for all it has to offer. And in case you too are feeling a bit out of sorts I hope you get your shine back very soon, maybe with a little help from this enticing tonic.
This recipe is raw, dairy and nut-free, and serves 2 – 3 persons.
- If orange juice isn’t available, you can substitute with tangerine, tangelo, clementine or any other sweet citrus fruit juice.
- You can substitute with 1/2 cup fresh carrot juice if carrots are not available.
- I like it on the sweeter side so I add a little orange-flavored stevia to the mix.
- 1 cup chopped unpeeled or peeled carrots
- 1 cup fresh mango chunks
- 2 cups fresh orange juice
- 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled
- 1 slice of lemon (about 1/4- inch thick slice) or a lemon wedge with peel
- few drops of orange essential oil (optional)
- 1/2 – 1 tsp pomegranate powder or goji powder or other tart fruit powder of choice (optional)
- sea salt and ground black pepper or cayenne for garnish
- several stalks of celery or other vegetable for garnish
- Add all ingredients garnish to a blender.
- Blend until very smooth. This may take a couple of minutes.
- Pour into glasses.
- Garnish with sea salt, black pepper or cayenne and celery stalks if using.
- Serve and enjoy.
- Yields about 3 cups.
- Can be stored refrigerated up to 3 days.