Saturday, July 28, 2012

Pop Tart Smoothie

Feeling hypoglycemic this morning? Then this concoction exploding with high fructose corn syrup and complex carbohydrates is just what you need to have an extremely short lived sugar high and subsequent day-long crash. But hey, life is all about the ups and downs, right?

  • 12 oz of your favorite fake milk product (I used rice milk)
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 8 frozen strawberries
  • 2 Pop Tarts, strawberry with frosting and sprinkles!
  • 4 ice cubes
8 easy steps:
  1. Put ingredients into blender
  2. Put lid onto blender
  3. Push button to blend for a while until it's smooth
  4. Turn off blender
  5. Take off blender lid
  6. Pour into a cup that you'd like to drink from
  7. Insert a flexi-straw
  8. Sip smoothie through flexi-straw into mouth and swallow

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Antiretroviral flavors

I just finished one month of of doing infectious disease consults at Jackson and one of my consults last week was antiretroviral (HIV) medication recommendations for a patient with a PJG (feeding) tube. In most of these cases medications are crushed, mixed with some water and pushed through the PJG. ARVs are pretty fancy high-tech pills that cannot be crushed without decreasing the efficacy of the medication or inactivating it completely. So it was my esteemed pleasure to look up what ARVs can be crushed and which come in liquid form. I found a pretty straightforward article with all the info I needed. I couldn't help but chuckle at all the exotic flavors of liquid HIV medication formulations. I'd thought liquid HIV medications would be a pretty utilitarian market, but how wrong I was. Without further ado, I give you your flavor options:

  • Abacavir (ZIAGEN): Strawberry-Banana
  • Emtricitabine (EMTRIVA): Cotton candy
  • Lamivudine (EPIVIR): Strawberry-Banana
  • Stavudine (ZERIT): Fruit
  • Zidovudine (RETROVIR): Strawberry
  • Fosamprenavir (LEXIVA): Grape, bubble gum, or peppermint
  • Tirpanavir (APTIVUS): Butternut or butter-toffee
  • Ritonavir (NORVIR): Peppermint or caramel
This is complicated by the fact that most people are on at least 3 HIV medications, adding up to some really funky flavor combo possibilities. Imagine mixing your "butter-toffee" syrup with the "cotton candy". Luckily our patient had two medications that were strawberry-banana and one that was unflavored, so there was no flavor clash issues. Did you ever think there would be a connection between SMOOTHIES and INFECTIOUS DISEASE? It happened so quickly

On a similar topic of pharmaceutical ridiculousness, take this quiz and decide if it's a drug name or a pokemon name: Drug or Pokemon
Even 3 years deep into medical school and formerly a pokemon follower, this was pretty difficult. I mostly know only generic drug names and the brand names are the weird ones. I am also only familiar with the first 150 pokemon. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Classixx: Strawberry and Banana

Smoothie enthusiasts are not a snobbish bunch. Sure we love the latest and greatest smoothies, using the most cutting edge ingredients and blending methods, but we all appreciate the classics just as well. This is my interpretation of the classic SBBS (strawberry banana smoothie). In this case, it's the Classixx remix. Enjoy these silky smooth disco tunes by LA DJs, The Classixx, while you get your blend on.


  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup of frozen strawberries
  • 3/4 cup almond/soy milk
  • 3/4 cup apple juice
  • 5-10 ice cubes
  1. Pull all that crap into the blender
  2. Press blend
  3. Add sweetener to taste if you want type 2 diabetes you fat-ass

The Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Smoothie

This creation was inspired by the classic PBJ with a glass of milk. I love a PBJ on toasted wheat bread, but it's kind of annoying to deal with. First of all, toasted bread has a way of spewing crumbs all over the place, and I rarely clean my kitchen, so these crumbs tend to stick around for a while and get stuck to my feet when I walk around barefoot. Second, I hate spreading shit with a knife, it's such a pain. And also, what do I do once I've spread the peanut butter? I have to clean the damn knife off on something so I don't contaminate the jelly with all the crudded up peanut butter detritus. So I said, let me just throw all this junk into a blender, besides, chewing is overrated.

  • 1/2 cup grape nuts or other hearty cereal, I bet granola would be good. This is our "bread"
  • Soy milk or almond milk
  • 1 frozen banana - peel it you idiot
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries - or any frozen fruit you like. This is the "jelly"
  • 1 heaping spoonful of peanut butter - a little goes a long way in a smoothie
  • Agave nectar, honey, or other sweetener, to taste.
  • 5-10 cubes of ice
  1. Put grape nuts in blender
  2. Add fake-milk-product until the grape nuts are fully submerged then pour until the liquid is 1-2 cm above the cereal. Learn your damn metrics
  3. Add the banana, peanut butter, berries, and ice
  4. BLEND BLEND BLEND - Some grittiness should remain, especially if you're using grape nuts, that stuff is like rocks, so it adds a nice crunch as you slurp down the smoothie.
  5. Sweeten to taste - honestly I can't remember if I added any extra sweetener when I made this. But if so I use splenda or agave.

The best smoothie ever

Well, unfortunately every other smoothie I post after this one will be shittier, so if your time is limited, make this smoothie and go no further. It is a recipe I stole from Choices Cafe where it is called "Este Coco Loco" and sells for the paltry price of $11. I bought it one time and it was a religious experience. Then I snapped out of it and kicked myself in the nuts for buying and eleven dollar smoothie.

As far as smoothies go, this is about as labor-intensive as they get. And by that I mean, there are at least 3 steps involved. It is pretty well worth it though. The star of the show is the young coconut, which you need to go to Whole Foods or El Palacio de los Jugos (if you're in Miami) to obtain. I've included a good youtube video on how to get into a young coconut.


  • 5-7 pitted dates - depends of size of your dates and desired sweetness level
  • 1/3 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 the meat from a young coconut - Watch this video about how to open a young coconut. Once open, pour the coconut water into a container and use a spoon to scrape out the white crud/golden ecstasy inside. This is your coconut meat. One young coconut and it's water is good for two smoothies
  • Coconut water from your young coconut - to taste and desired consistency
  • A dash or two of kosher salt - key to unlocking the savory aspect of this smoothie
  • Ice to taste - 5-10 refrigerator  ice cubes does it for me
  1. Put dates, cashews, coconut meat, and salt into blender and blend. It will be dry and gritty still, but the coconut water will remedy this.
  2. Add ice and some splashes of coconut water. Blend some more.
  3. Keep on adding coconut water until you reach desired consistency and taste.
  4. If you want to make it sweeter, add more dates. If you want to make it saltier, add more salt. 
Quick and Dirty version:

I don't live near anywhere they sell young coconuts so this is my quick and dirty, slightly less awesome version. Replace the young coconut meat with 1/2 of a 6 oz bag (3 oz) of frozen shredded coconut flakes. Replace the coconut water with soy milk or almond milk, probably about 6 or 8 oz. The frozen shredded coconut does not have the buttery savoriness of young coconut meat, but it's a shitload less time-consuming and cheaper. 

Important Announcement

"What the hell is happening?" you might say. Where have all of the witty, partially-realized, poorly-executed, pun-based comics gone? Well loyal fans, I've been busy. I've been busy slurping blended fluids out of a straw to nourish my weary old bones. Yes, that's right, my dearest mother got me an awesome new blender! My masseter muscle is atrophying, as I haven't chewed on anything for weeks. Solid foods are soo overrated. So, without further ado, Purple People will be taking a foray into thickened-liquid gastronomy for a while. I might also talk about infectious diseases a bit.

FYI, this is the blender I'm working with: BRRRRMMMM! It's pretty great although it's a little bit annoying to wash since it has lots of nooks and crannies. Also, it is only a pulse blender, so I have to stand there and hold down this stupid button for a whole minute.