Two years ago, on a trip I took to Nicaragua with my boyfriend, I had some of the most delicious smoothies I ever tasted.
The very first one was on Corn Island, which is a remote island located in the Caribbean Sea. The sun was shining bright and the heat was almost reaching 30º: those were the perfect conditions for a cold tropical drink. The one we tried was made with mangoes, bananas, and pineapple. The balance of each flavour was absolutely exquisite; the mango gave it a touch of sweetness; the banana made it wonderfully creamy, whereas the pineapple added a hint of acidity.
This smoothie actually was what started my smoothie spree in the Central American country. Following that first drink on Corn Island, I ordered a tropical smoothie at almost every spot that offered one on the menu. Many were tasty, but few beat the one we sipped on on the beach of the Caribbean island...
... Until... we arrived to Ometepe, another island in Nicaragua best known for its two volcanos and black sand beaches. During our stay on the island, we stayed at a B&B called the Cornerhouse, which had breakfasts that brought us back home (eggs benedict, baked potato wedges, and veggie-packed omelettes) and smoothies that tasted like a tropical heaven. You could choose the fruits you wanted in your smoothie and two of my favorite combinations were: (1) grapefruit, mango, papaya and (2) passion fruit, mango.
When I first took a sip of the smoothies, I immediately felt transported back to my childhood in Africa, where all these tropical, fresh, perfectly ripe fruits were widely available and eaten almost daily. I am convinced that my love for tropical fruits comes from the fact that for the first 8 years of my life, those were the fruits I was most exposed to. However, when immigrating to Canada, my eating patterns changed quite a bit and my love for mangoes and passion fruit changed to a passion for blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and cherries.
Nevertheless, every time I go back to a warm country, I come back with a massive craving for tropical smoothies. For example, this year, I got the incredible chance to travel to Peru along with the Pure Art Foundation and on this trip I had a mango passion fruit smoothie at a popular restaurant in Cusco called Jack’s Cafe. Upon my return, I stocked my fridge with ataulfo mangoes and passion fruits (I was lucky because I came back right on time for the beginning of the passion fruit season! Yay!).
Hence, my trip to Peru is what inspired this smoothie. It is sweet, slightly tart, creamy, and silky smooth. The garnishes add another layer of textures and flavours, while complementing what I call the pure tropical goodness that gently rests under them. I truly hope you try this recipe; I promise you will not be disappointed.
2 frozen bananas
1 orange, peeled and seeded
½ an ataulfo mango
1 tbsp of yogurt (I used coconut yogurt)
1 tsp of turmeric
¼ cup of coconut milk
½ cup of water
1 tbsp of lime juice (optional)
Coconut flakes (raw or toasted, to taste)
Yogurt (I used coconut yogurt)
- Place all ingredients of the smoothie in the blender. Blend until creamy and smooth.
- Pour in your favorite bowl.
- Top with your preferred toppings & enjoy as you feel transported to a warm tropical destination.