Before we get to this simple and delicious Fig and Tahini Smoothie, let talk about how Chinese people follow recipes, shall we?!
The other day in class, my teacher and I were studying Chinese by looking at a Chinese recipe. We recorded my teacher reading the recipe out loud and then played back the recording, stopping the recording when needed to talk through new vocabulary. I not only learned so many new vocabulary words, but I also learned a lot about how Chinese people cook.
One of the steps in the recipe was to grab the “appropriate amount” of tomato paste and dilute it with water. What?! The appropriate amount? What does that even mean? Apparently I’m supposed to know the “appropriate amount” of tomato paste to use by looking at the other ingredients.
In some ways I find Chinese recipes confusing and frustrating, but I also think they’re a great way to get more experimental in the kitchen. I think most Americans are used to following recipes to a T and never get creative with ingredients or proportions, because they’re so set on following a recipe. Hopefully living in China and wanting to get better at Chinese cooking will help me step out of my comfort zone!
In my opinion, smoothies are a great way to start being more experimental in the kitchen. So many fruits go well together and you can easily create different flavors by adding in different spices. Green smoothies are a cinch to make by adding in a handful of spinach or, my personal favorite, are chocolate smoothies made with cocoa powder and sweet bananas.
I had the idea for this Fig and Tahini Smoothie from a restaurant Brett and I ate at while traveling this past summer. A restaurant in Hong Kong was selling a smoothie called the Babylon Shake and it was made with figs and tahini and cinnamon. Yes please!
Thankfully, figs are finally in season here in China. While they’re not as vibrant in the inside as other country’s figs, they are still sweet and delicious. Then, when you pair them with rich tahini and sweet cinnamon, you get an amazing flavor combination!
But again, get creative with this recipe. If you love tahini, add in another tablespoon or so. If figs are your favorite fruit, chuck a couple more in the blender. Have fun and let me know what variations you come up with!
- 2 frozen bananas,
- 3-4 small, ripe figs
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 1 cup soy milk
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Place all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
- Taste and adjust any ingredients as you desire.