Vegan Immortality Smoothie (Happy Birthday to Me!)

by Dorothy Reinhold on February 1, 2014

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If you want to sing me Happy Birthday today, I won’t object.

My mother called me early to sing her charming off-key version, and later my family sang to me over breakfast – my daughter offering harmony to my husband and son’s squeaky man version. It was PERFECT!

Picture Cook-See. Make. Eat by Katie Shelly“Many, many more,” my friend Denise wished for me in a private message, and I sat up straight and took note of that sentiment.

Indeed, many, many more. There is so much delicious food to prepare and eat, and so little time!

So let’s get crackin’ with this Immortality Smoothie, from the new book, “Picture Cook: See. Make. Eat,” by Katie Shelly. This book breaks new ground. Instead of offering text instructions, it offers step-by-step illustrations, a welcome alternative to the usual cookbook format.

Since a lot of people are “visual learners,” this book really fills a need. Take a glance at the recipe illustration above for the Immortality Smoothie. You really do “get it” without all the usual words, don’t you? The author calls herself a media designer — a graphics and video producer for the Cooper Hewitt Museum in NYC who freelances in graphic design, illustration and animation. Her skills are well on display here.

I think it would be a perfect gift for a teen, pre-teen or youthful cook who might need a general idea of how to make something, but doesn’t want or need to wade through a bunch of verbiage to get it. In fact, author Shelly encourages personalizing the recipes — “The recipes are not intended as precise culinary blueprints. Instead, they are meant to inspire improvisation, experimentation and play in the kitchen.” That sounds fun, doesn’t it?

Sweet-potato-fries on ShockinglyDelicious.comShe has a bunch of recipes I have bookmarked – Chana Masala, Sweet Potato Fries, Cheating Peanut Sauce, Actual Chai, Candied Ginger…the list is endless for the quirky illustration-recipes I want to make.

Today, though, it’s going to be about living forever, in this sweet life. And for those who need some words, I have taken the liberty of creating the wordy version. My present to YOU!

Recipe: Immortality Smoothie

Summary: Shall we live forever with this naturally sweet, healthy smoothie? Yes, we shall.


  • 2 frozen bananas, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 8-ish leaves green romaine lettuce, chopped
  • Handful strawberries with stems, sliced in half


  1. Whirl everything in a blender. Pour into a glass and drink.
  2. Serves 1 or 2.


“Picture Cook: See. Make. Eat,” by Katie Shelly (2013 Ulysses Press; $18.95)

Preparation time: 5 minutes
Diet type: Vegan
Diet tags: Low calorie, Reduced fat, Gluten free, Raw
Number of servings (yield): 1-2
Culinary tradition: USA (General)

Disclosure: Recipe and illustrations used with permission. The publisher sent the book for review. All opinions are my own.

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