"Jaws Wired Shut turned 5 today!" reads the email tumblr just sent me, hilariously demonstrating the limitations of automated targeted marketing. 
I’m not exactly celebrating the incident that started it all, but okay, fine, let’s take a moment and mark the passage of time since my liquid summer.
Plenty has changed, plenty is the same. I’m even still using the same blender, even though, sometimes when I’m lusting after a Vitamix, I not-so-secretly wish the old one would die.
Looking back at my list of recipes, I still can’t believe some of the things I ate.
While I don’t have a lot to add these days, Jaws Wired Shut will continue to live on as an archive because people keep breaking their jaws and they need recipes. Even I found myself reviving some old favorites last winter in an attempt to get Dan to eat something other than mashed potatoes while recovering from oral surgery. 
Anyway, I’m still here for ya, guys. Time has not erased my vivid memories of how much having a broken jaw sucks. Hang in there. But take care of yourselves. Love your blender and drink things made from real food as best you can. I promise it will help you feel better than anything out of a can or pouch. You can reward yourself with this.
Oh, and I’m still learning new tricks, occasionally. It turns out a strawberry-rhubarb smoothie is a thing. Seriously. It’s like, healthy pie. 
- full fat yogurt
- dash of cinnamon
- dash of cardamom
- 1 banana
- handful of strawberries
- 1 stalk of rhubarb (just chop it up! You don’t even have to cook it unless the tangy-ness bothers you!).
I think I thinned it out with coconut water but you could use milk or almond milk or orange juice.

"Jaws Wired Shut turned 5 today!" reads the email tumblr just sent me, hilariously demonstrating the limitations of automated targeted marketing.

I’m not exactly celebrating the incident that started it all, but okay, fine, let’s take a moment and mark the passage of time since my liquid summer.

Plenty has changed, plenty is the same. I’m even still using the same blender, even though, sometimes when I’m lusting after a Vitamix, I not-so-secretly wish the old one would die.

Looking back at my list of recipes, I still can’t believe some of the things I ate.

While I don’t have a lot to add these days, Jaws Wired Shut will continue to live on as an archive because people keep breaking their jaws and they need recipes. Even I found myself reviving some old favorites last winter in an attempt to get Dan to eat something other than mashed potatoes while recovering from oral surgery.

Anyway, I’m still here for ya, guys. Time has not erased my vivid memories of how much having a broken jaw sucks. Hang in there. But take care of yourselves. Love your blender and drink things made from real food as best you can. I promise it will help you feel better than anything out of a can or pouch. You can reward yourself with this.

Oh, and I’m still learning new tricks, occasionally. It turns out a strawberry-rhubarb smoothie is a thing. Seriously. It’s like, healthy pie.

- full fat yogurt

- dash of cinnamon

- dash of cardamom

- 1 banana

- handful of strawberries

- 1 stalk of rhubarb (just chop it up! You don’t even have to cook it unless the tangy-ness bothers you!).

I think I thinned it out with coconut water but you could use milk or almond milk or orange juice.

4 weeks ago | Comments (View) |

From the Recipes for Health column in the New York Times, here are five unconventional but healthy smoothie combos:
Pear and arugula with ginger and walnuts
Mixed berry and beet
Red berry, cabbage, and almond
Arugula piña colada
Pineapple, orange, granola and carrot
I’m a fan of Martha Rose Shulman’s recipes and these sound intriguing. However, I feel fairly confident — even without having tested these — in advising, if you are wired shut, to be cautious putting arugula or granola in your smoothies. Unless you have a supremely powerful blender like a Vitamix, or you like a challenge. Of course, if you’re wired shut, isn’t that challenge enough? Don’t make your life even more difficult.
Note: each recipe has nutritional info at the end.

From the Recipes for Health column in the New York Times, here are five unconventional but healthy smoothie combos:

I’m a fan of Martha Rose Shulman’s recipes and these sound intriguing. However, I feel fairly confident — even without having tested these — in advising, if you are wired shut, to be cautious putting arugula or granola in your smoothies. Unless you have a supremely powerful blender like a Vitamix, or you like a challenge. Of course, if you’re wired shut, isn’t that challenge enough? Don’t make your life even more difficult.

Note: each recipe has nutritional info at the end.

2 years ago | Comments (View) |

If you’re watching this video here on Jaws Wired Shut, instead of on its creator’s YouTube page or No Meat Athlete (which is where I found it), then it is unlikely that “Blend” and “Happy” are words you’re using side by side these days. But despite not being happy about a mandated blender diet, you can crack a little bit of a smile in having another resource dedicated to helping you get the nutrients you need up a straw. So just watch this, and don’t worry about the fact that it’s vegan if that’s not your thing, or that it’s meant to be consumed after the workout you are probably not doing while wired shut. Oh, and BlendHappy has other recipes, videos, and blender reviews. You’re probably going to need those, too.

3 years ago | | Comments (View)

This. Looks. Amazing. And for anyone on the blender diet, you’ll be guaranteed a good amount of the nutrients and calories you need.I can’t even deal with the texture of pudding (let’s get into that later), yet still want to try this. So what I’m going to do is thin it out with extra water — although more likely milk or rice milk — and see how it turns out as a chocomole shake.
Note: if you generally care about good nutrition, food, and planet, you should be reading Susheela’s blog on a daily basis. 
holisticmiss:

Is there anything that avocados can’t do?
They’re high in LDL cholesterol-lowering fats, fibre, potassium, and folate. Among other things, this makes them great for heart health!
I promised you dessert, so here’s one that employs the mighty avocado:
Avocado Chocolate Pudding (also lovingly referred to as Chocomole!)
Ingredients
1 ripe avocado
1/3 cup pure maple syrup (substitute: 8 medium-sized dates)
3 1/2 tbsp. raw cacao powder (substitute: carob powder)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/4-1/2 cup water
Directions
Process everything in a food processor, adding water as needed, until smooth.
Yield: 2 servings
The original recipe was another one shared in class by my lovely friend, Erin.
I should warn you that this amazing pudding is seriously rich, so pace yourselves!

This. Looks. Amazing. And for anyone on the blender diet, you’ll be guaranteed a good amount of the nutrients and calories you need.I can’t even deal with the texture of pudding (let’s get into that later), yet still want to try this. So what I’m going to do is thin it out with extra water — although more likely milk or rice milk — and see how it turns out as a chocomole shake.

Note: if you generally care about good nutrition, food, and planet, you should be reading Susheela’s blog on a daily basis.

holisticmiss:

Is there anything that avocados can’t do?

They’re high in LDL cholesterol-lowering fats, fibre, potassium, and folate. Among other things, this makes them great for heart health!

I promised you dessert, so here’s one that employs the mighty avocado:

Avocado Chocolate Pudding (also lovingly referred to as Chocomole!)

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup (substitute: 8 medium-sized dates)
  • 3 1/2 tbsp. raw cacao powder (substitute: carob powder)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4-1/2 cup water

Directions

  • Process everything in a food processor, adding water as needed, until smooth.

Yield: 2 servings

The original recipe was another one shared in class by my lovely friend, Erin.

I should warn you that this amazing pudding is seriously rich, so pace yourselves!

4 years ago | Comments (View) |

Peanut Butter and Everything

Amazingly, of all the shakes and smoothies I drank while wired shut, many of which involved either peanut butter OR bananas, none involved both. Well, here’s an easy recipe for one shared by Carol, a food blogger who unfortunately recently joined the broken jaw patient ranks.

Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie

  • 1 serving Greek yogurt, 0 or 2 percent fat
  • 1/2 cup 2 percent milk, or whatever kind you want
  • 1 banana, frozen or not
  • 1 T of natural organic peanut butter

"Just blend it all together.  It is delicious and has lots of good stuff for you.  You could probably substitute any kind of fruit."

It’s true - any fruit whose jam or jelly tastes good on a peanut butter sandwich will probably taste just as good blended. But don’t actually use jelly. (Or bread.)

Carol is just at the start of her healing process, so if you’re looking for more recipes, keep an eye on her blog, where I’m sure there is more blended deliciousness to come.

4 years ago | Comments (View) |

Guest Post: Pumpkin Pie & A Blender

Perhaps the most ubiquitous reason to take a turn on the blender diet is having one’s wisdom teeth removed. I unwittingly took a trial run myself, getting all four wisdom teeth out about a year before I broke my jaw. Luke from Tuna Cupcake went through it himself last fall and managed to make it fun — beyond the requisite painkillers — by testing out this awesome milkshake and then generously sharing the results with JWS:


When I was little, our neighbour grew these prize-winning pumpkins. They were MASSIVE. And every year, the vines would grow under the fence and a good number of pumpkins would grow in our yard. And by ‘a good number’, I’m talking like 20-30. Needless to say, we had a problem with hooligans smashing pumpkins in our neighbourhood. We also had an absurd number of Jack-O-Lanterns, which led to an absurd number of smash Jack-O-Lanterns in our driveway.

That said, it also meant that we had easy access to pumpkin for eating. My mom makes delicious pumpkin pie that starts with a real pumpkin and not some crap from a can. And oh, the difference it makes. I definitely have a heart-on for all things pumpkin.

A few months back, I posted that I’d had my wisdom teeth out and was trying to find interesting things to eat, Connor from Hold the Beef recommended a pumpkin pie shake. I got the recommendation at about 8:30am and was at the grocery store 10 minutes later, buying up all the ingredients. Not only until I got home and got to talking Emily did it hit me that an actual pumpkin pie is pretty blendable (and in my case, soft enough to eat as-is, but I was pretty paranoid for the first couple of days). So we decided to try a delicious experiment: concocted shake vs. blended pie.

Note: Months and months passed (and I healed fully from my wisdom teeth ordeal) before I actually got around to finishing this post. So rather than relying on faded memories, I invited my friend Pam over for a Saturday night of milkshakes.

Pumpkin Pie Shake

The complex option

Connor pointed to a recipe on another Toronto food blog, Closet Cooking. I knew I needed it before I even saw the recipe, but once I saw the picture and the comments, well, that cemented the deal.

As far as smoothies/shakes go, this one is fairly complicated. You’re mixing all the flavours of the pie, which gives you total control over the final product, but honestly, it’s a bit of work for a milkshake. Especially since I had to grind cloves.

Closet Cooking’s Recipe (Source)

  • 2 cups vanilla frozen yogurt
  • 1/4 cup milk (I needed more, to make it drinkable without a straw)
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin puree (I used canned)
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon gingersnap cookies (crumbled for the topping, I didn’t use these)

Blend it all together and you get: a delicious shake that tastes like the idea of pumpkin pie in milkshake form. Delicious, subtle flavours. Downside: you can definitely tell that there was no crust involved. You may get some semblance of that if you mix the gingersnap cookies in, but the recipe calls for them solely as a garnish.

Blended Pumpkin Pie

The simple option

This is definitely the simpler option. My process: Throw some milk, frozen yogurt, and pumpkin pie into a blend and GO. From 10 ingredients down to three.

This is how I like to cook.

From the first sip, you can definitely tell this is an actual pumpkin pie in milkshake form. To my mind, that’s a great thing. Some part of me just loves knowing that I’m drinking pie crust. The… grit (is that the word?) it adds might not be for everyone, but it brings a smile to my face.

The downside: your shake is really going to vary based on the pie you used. If you’re using your mom’s homemade pie, you’ll likely love the shake. The first pie I made with it was pretty mildly spiced, and the shake was delicious. When Pam and I did our taste test, we found the spice a bit overpowering. In later attempts, it was hard to mask the spice of the Sara Lee pie without diluting the pumpkin-ey-ness more than I wanted.

The End Result

Based on the taste test Pam & I did in February, the Pumpkin Pie Shake from Closet Cooking came out the clear winner. If you’re trying to impress someone with your pumpkin-pie-shake-making skills, it’s definitely the way to go. Having control over the spices means you can make it a bit more delicate than the blended pie option, and you can prepare a consistent shake every time. You really do get the idea of pumpkin pie in milkshake form, versus a blended pumpkin pie and everything that entails. The one issue: 1.3 of a cup of pumpkin puree leaves the majority of a can left for some other purpose… I ended up throwing mine out.

Thinking back to my days on a soft food diet, though, I ate a whole lot more of the blended pumpkin pie shakes (an entire pie’s worth, in fact). They were just so easy, what with three ingredients (four if you’re adding protein powder—I did and enjoyed it). And there’s something satisfying about throwing some pie in the blender and drinking it down. If you’ve got access to a delicious pumpkin pie but can’t down it in its soft-but-solid form, give it a shot! But as with anything, the quality of your ingredient dictates your results.

Future experiments: Check out the list on Closet Cooking’s recipe - I’m pretty excited to try out some more pumpkin pie-flavoured goods and use up this can of pumpkin puree!

4 years ago | Comments (View) |

Medal count for wired jaw survivors: 1

Congratulations to Shannon Bahrke — mogul skier, bronze medal winner at the Vancouver Olympics, wired jaw survivor. As if becoming an Olympian isn’t hard enough, several years ago Bahrke faced the setback of a broken jaw after an accident while competing in Japan. Well, here’s what we all really want to know:

What does an Olympian eat when her jaw is wired shut?

Go ahead and make the obligatory joke about Wheaties in the blender while I try to find out the details of Bahrke’s regimen of smoothies and strained soup that had to make up for her usual FIVE meals a day. And I thought I had a hard time getting enough calories.

4 years ago | Comments (View) |

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