If you’ve been reading this column for a while, you probably figured out by now that in this partnership, Chef Jeannette develops the recipes and I write the introductions. Which is a good division of labor, because I’m no chef! But every once in a while, I come up with a self-made concoction that I just have to share.
That’s the case with this recipe, which I’ve been eating every night for years. I call it my secret anti-aging dish, but my friends call it “Dr. Jonny’s Berries and Cherries.” I honestly believe that eating this dish every day is one of the things that keeps me youthful and healthy—it’s that powerfully rich in natural antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.
So I called up Chef Jeannette and said, “Look, I’ve got this dish that’s really amazing—so healthy, so delicious—but I have no idea how to turn it into a recipe. Normally, I just take the ingredients, throw fistfuls of each of them into a bowl, and mix!”
She did a little experimenting and came up with this brilliant blueprint, which, I can tell you, is every bit as good as the one I make by “feel” every night. This dish makes a great breakfast (maybe supplemented with an egg or two), dessert, or even a late-night snack. And don’t blame me if your friends start suddenly asking you if you had any “work” done.
Berries & Cherries “Trail Mix” Yogurt
6 oz. plain organic Greek yogurt
3 Tbs. 100% pure pomegranate or açai juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract, optional
1/2 cup frozen organic cherries, pitted
1 cup fresh organic blueberries (wild, if possible)
2 Tbs. unsweetened coconut flakes or 1 Tbs. grated coconut
6–8 whole roasted almonds (gluten-free tamari almonds are a great option)
Combine yogurt, juice, and vanilla extract in serving bowl, and mix until blended. Add cherries and blueberries, and mix until well coated. Fold in coconut and almonds, and serve immediately.
PER SERVING: 257 cal; 8g pro; 15g total fat (10g sat fat); 23g carb; 15mg chol; 33mg sod; 4g fiber; 16g sugars
Notes from Chef Jeannette: If you prefer a sweeter yogurt, add a sprinkle of stevia when you mix the yogurt with the juice. For an additional probiotic punch, mix ¼ tsp. powdered acidophilus into the yogurt. The frozen cherries give the mixture a pleasant chilled, slushy texture, but you can also use fresh. Customize this treat to suit your tastes and the season—it’s also great with black-berries or raspberries. Try a splash of pure, organic blueberry or tart cherry concentrate in place of the juice for a different flavor and antioxidant profile.
Jeannette Bessinger, CHHC, is a certified holistic health counselor and recipe developer. Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS, is a nationally known health, nutrition, and weight-loss expert. Bessinger and Bowden have collaborated on numerous cookbooks, including their newest, The 150 Healthiest Slow Cooker Recipes. Visit them online at thecleanfoodcoach.com and jonnybowden.com.