Monday, October 22, 2012


I miss trick-or-treating. It’s not the candy that I miss, per se, but the entire experience. Dressing up quickly after school. Waiting anxiously for everyone else. The parents were always running late. Come oooon, Mom and Dad! We need to get going! It didn’t occur to me that there was probably nobody home to hand out candy anyway. When everyone was finally dressed and ready, we went out and stayed out for hours, . Yes, hours. We walked miles to gather pounds and pounds of candy. We even stopped for a hydration break. (Thank you neighbor for handing out juice boxes. Much appreciated.) When my sister and I got home Halloween night, we would sort our candy and trade strategically. It didn’t matter in the end, though. I had a terrible sweet tooth and stole her candy after I ate through mine. I think she knew. If she didn’t, she definitely knows now! Sorry.

What is your favorite Halloween treat? I love dark chocolate. I have found that chocolate Larabars, made with chocolate, nuts and dried fruit, can really hit the spot. I also love Kind Bars. Try any flavor with chocolate or cinnamon for a seasonal treat. Find them here at Magic Potion Juice Bar!

Happy Halloween! I hope it’s a sweet one. You are never too old to celebrate.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Marching to the beet...

I am a unique kind of individual. Likely, I am one of the select few who actually enjoy writing blog posts about fruits and vegetables. I am honestly having a blast.

And, thinking this morning, I realized that I definitely do march to the beat of my own drum.
I also realized I had neglected one of the stars of the juice bar – the BEET!
The beet actually belongs to the same species as Swiss chard. Its wild ancestor still grows in the Mediterranean, where it is believed to have originated, and the Near East.
Beets can make a juice sweet and give it a beautiful red hue. Not only do beets make our juices delicious, they make them nutritious! (You like that slant rhyme, right?) Beets are indeed rich in folate.
If you buy bunched beets from the store or market, make sure to save the greens. Prepare beet tops as you would any other green.
Come in and try it out!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Go Blue


Unbeknownst to many, the blueberry is New Jersey’s state fruit. The blueberry is native to North America, unlike nearly all fruits in commercial production. (The cranberry is the only other commercial fruit native to North America.)

Nearly a century ago, here in New Jersey, Elizabeth White and Dr. Frederick Coville became the first to cultivate modern, highbush blueberries. Today, New Jersey is home to the world’s largest blueberry farm and production facility and ranks fourth nationally for blueberry production.

In 2004, New Jersey adopted the blueberry as its official state fruit, after a class of fourth-graders campaigned to make it so.

Red, white and blueberries all the way! Celebrate Jersey and enjoy a smoothie with delicious, good-for-you blueberries!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Root of It

When I get to the root of it, all I want is straight up carrot juice. Like orange juice, carrot juice has that bright, sunny color and a sweet, delicious taste. Carrots are also great sources of alpha- and beta-carotenes (the source of vitamin A).

At least orange carrots are rich in carotene. But not all carrots are orange. Carrots come in a rainbow of colors: white, yellow, orange, red, and even purple!

Not only are carrots used in juices. As we all know, they are also eaten raw or cooked. Turns out roasted carrots can be used as a coffee substitute (no thank you) and carrot wine has also been produced (again, no thank you).

Take a few minutes this morning to breathe and meditate. Maybe when you get down to the root, you’ll find that you, too, will want a carrot juice!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Orange you glad...?

There is nothing more comforting to me than a glass of cold orange juice. Maybe it reminds me of my mother, or of breakfasts at home. It could be simply the sunny color or the sweet taste or the sheer simplicity of it. Just orange.

The orange originated in Southeast Asia. It was not until 1450 or 1500 that the orange made it to the Mediterranean region. Within 200 years, the orange was known and loved throughout Europe. European explorers (including Christopher Columbus!) brought the orange from Europe to North America.

Now, the United States is the world’s leading orange producer! California and Florida produce most of our oranges.

And we love our orange juice. Rumor has it, orange wine is produced in South Africa and Brazil. I can’t imagine! I think I’ll stick with juice. Orange you glad Magic Potion Juice Bar serves delicious, fresh-squeezed, sweet and simple OJ!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Popping Sisters!

The popcorn is pop-pop-pop-ping in the whirley pop on the stove. The kitchen smells like the kettle corn stand at the farmers’ market. My mouth is watering.

Magic Potion Juice Bar now carries kettle corn snack bags made locally by Popping Sisters. Start with plain old popping corn (a whole grain!). Add maple syrup, spices, dried fruits, and seeds. Voila! A delicious, healthy snack. The Popping Sisters are starting out with two flavors. The first is maple-cinnamon with dried cranberries (which, like blueberries, are native to our area) and pumpkin seeds (‘tis the season!). The second is chocolate-raisin with a dash of ginger and a hint of sea salt. There will be more!

Even a juice bar can have popcorn to snack on! The Popping Sisters cast their spell and make a typical bar snack into something wholesome and delicious.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

And a Dash of Cinnamon

I use cinnamon on nearly everything. Okay, perhaps that is exaggerating. Still, I enjoy adding a sprinkle to my oatmeal, espresso, and smoothies. It is a key ingredient in Magic Potion Juice Bar’s seasonal special: Pumpkin Pie Smoothie. And it has an interesting history.

Cinnamon is in the same plant family as Bay Leaf and Sassafrass (which is a really cool plant that grows all over the place around here. Look for a tree with three different leaf types. Rip a leaf open and take a whiff – smells like Fruit Loops, right? But I digress). What is sold as cinnamon in the United States today may be one of two species: true cinnamon, which has thinner bark, and cassia, which has thicker bark. Both can be, and are, labeled “cinnamon.” Most cinnamon is produced in Southeast Asia.

Mmmm...warm apple cider

From Southeast Asia, it was carried by traders to Egypt and later to Europe. Before it became popular in cooking, cinnamon was used in embalming (by the Egyptians) and religious ceremonies. Venice controlled the cinnamon trade in the 1400s and 1500s and profited greatly from it. After Venice, Portugal gained control. Desire for cinnamon was so strong, and the profits from controlling the trade so great, that a fight between nations broke out and Holland seized control from Portugal! Though perhaps we don’t see as much conflict in today’s trade, I’d say that desire is still strong! At least mine is!

Pumpkin pie smoothie with pecans and maple syrup

Come in and try a seasonal smoothie or some hot apple cider. Or ask for a dash of cinnamon to spice up any of our standard smoothies! Delish.