A Sweet Summertime Smoothie

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - June 14, 2006
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Alika Parker is store manager, and Amanda Abbott is senior assistant store manager of the recently opened Pier One Imports in Kailua. When walking in the door, you immediately realize that this is a very relaxing and friendly place that is great for browsing; it hits all of your senses with its colors, aromas, and the abundant array of exotic products from distant lands.

Alika and Amanda are very upbeat and friendly, and extremely knowledgeable about all of the unusual products. These characteristics appear to be shared by all of the store’s sales staff.

This column is dedicated to two people whose energy and spirit of aloha is truly infectious.

The kiwi was introduced into New Zealand in the early 1900s and was called the Chinese gooseberry. In 1953 the fruit was renamed after the kiwi, a native New Zealand flightless bird. Today, many different varieties of the fruit are cultivated in the United States, France, Italy, Spain, Israel, Chile, Australia, South Africa and Russia.

The kiwi is egg-shaped and the flesh is sweet and juicy. Small edible black seeds form a circle around the yellowish core of the fruit. The thin brownish skin is also edible, but most people prefer to peel it.

Kiwis are picked when ripe, but still firm, and will ripen at room temperature.

Choose kiwis that are unblemished and not very soft or damaged; the flesh should yield to light pressure of the fingers when ripe. Kiwis should be left at room temperature until ripe, and placing them in a brown paper bag will speed up the ripening process. Ripe kiwis should keep for about four days in the refrigerator; unripe fruit for about two weeks in the refrigerator.

The kiwi is an excellent source of vitamin C and potassium. It also contains magnesium as well as traces of phosphorus, iron and vitamin A. They are also said to be diuretic and laxative.


* 1 papaya, peeled, seeded and diced
* 1 kiwi, sliced
* 1 banana, peeled and chopped
* 1 cup strawberries
* 1 cup ice cubes
* 1/2 cup apple juice
* 1 (8-ounce) container low-fat strawberry yogurt

In a blender, blend the kiwi, banana, blueberries, strawberries, ice, orange juice, and yogurt until smooth. Makes four servings.

Nutrition Information Per Serving:

Calories: 140 Total Fat: 2 grams Cholesterol: 5 milligrams Sodium: 40 milligrams

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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