Juicing is often an experimental process…frangipani anyone?

Recently I found myself lounging in my new garden chair, smelling the roses, communing with nature and contemplating my navel (as you do) and I got to thinking how I could incorporate edible flowers into my treat juices…coz lets face it, they’d be lost, if not completely wasted, in the “must-have-daily-green.”

I already use jasmine and rose in my tea’s and have started playing with them in juice, but what about frangipani?

A locally grown dragon fruit.

A locally grown dragon fruit.

Well, yesterday I had the joy of finding a locally grown dragon fruit. Remember me raving on about the amazing heavy metal detox abilities of the dragon fruit recently? Well, they are rather expensive for such a somewhat plain tasting fruit, but oh my gosh are they just divine to look at, and seeing as I know how good they are for detoxing and bearing in mind that we should all support our local growers whenever the opportunity arises, I bought this baby here and set about experimenting with a new juice.

If you remember my last experiment with a dragon fruit produced my Imperial Dragon; a divinely exotic fruit smoothie slash juice made with dragon fruit, mango, lychee, rambutan and lime. It was absolutely delicious, but very very high in sugar. So this time I decided to go for something a little less opulent.

Here is what I tried:

Dragon ExperimentI popped the whole dragon fruit including the skin, in my blender along with both cheeks, also including skin, of 1 mango, 10 frangipani flowers, – yes, the flower, it is edible and it is delicious and tastes just like it smells, sweet and exotic. I then tipped in the water from 1 young drinking coconut.

By the way, I considered using the flesh of the coconut. Young coconut should have a very thin soft layer of flesh, however when I cracked this one open it was very thick, as you can see from the picture, and not much softer than a mature coconut, so I left it as it would have been just too much coconut fibre, taste and fat (for me personally).

Now to the frangipani’s. Despite recent navel ponderings about using them in a juice, the idea came as an afterthought, so I popped out to the garden and grabbed a handful off the tree, washed them to make sure there was none of the milk on them, I have a feeling that would be bad, and threw them all into the blender too.

Last but not least, I added a large handful of ice.

Blend blend blend blend…la la la…dum de dum and voila, a new smoothie is created.

Okay, but was it fabulous like my last dragon fruit experiment?  No, not really. It wasn’t horrible, in fact it was quite lovely and refreshing, but I will do it differently next time simply because it wasn’t fabulous, and as lovely as lovely is, it isn’t quite the same as fabulous is it?

Here is what I would do differently.

I would use my stick blender to blend the mango with skin, and the dragon fruit flesh in the jug of my juicer. Then I would run the dragon fruit skin and the frangipani through the juicer into the jug. I wouldn’t use the coconut water, I found the coconut overpowered the flavour of the frangipani. This might not be the case if I had used packaged coconut water which never seems to taste quite like a fresh one. If it needed watering down I would use just water…(maybe almond milk, hmmm, there’s a thought). I might also use 2 handfuls of frangipani rather than 1 so that the frangipani flavour and fragrance was more pronounced. I would then squeeze the juice of half a lime in, yes, squeeze, not juice, as just a hint of lime is all it would need.

Now I realise not everyone has a frangipani growing in their garden, but the point is, flowers really can add a lovely exotic touch to your juice. If you don’t have flowers in your garden, why not try rose water or orange blossom water? You can pick up a bottle of these waters in an eastern store if your local supermarket doesn’t have them. Remember my Orange Blossom Fruit Salad Juice? Oh that was divine indulgence for sure.

Okay, enough about indulgence. Before I go perhaps I should remind you that these sweet fruity juices and smoothies really are a treat and not the sort of thing you’d be indulging in all the time, not just because of the sugar hit, but also the cost, ouch! But every now and then, when something fancy is in season, don’t be afraid to spoil yourself and experiment with your own exotic blends.

Happy Juicing everyone :)