How To Drink Like A Skywalker: Green And Blue Extreme Milk Recipes
Updated: Aug 26
Good morning and welcome to the Extremophile Survival Program! I'm Coach Timmy and today we are joined by Chef Fermé Brewer from Microbial Gastronomy! We all need sustenance right? Microbes, Giants, every living thing must consume something to keep them alive. The Giants have gotten pretty lazy about their food and many would likely die if it wasn't laid out in giant rows for them to pick up in giant carts! But what happens when you are in a new place, an extreme place that doesn't have the food you're used to? You have to improvise! Many microbes can adapt to extremely harsh conditions where most other life wouldn't survive, we're called extremophiles! The ability to consume unlikely foods is one of our trademarks!
Today, let's talk about a favorite of the Giants, milk! For Giants and many animals, milk is their first food and it's produced by the mother. This first food source is usually temporary as the baby learns to eat other food. The Giants seem to love milk and have found ways to consume the milk of other animals (cows, goats, sheep, camel and buffalo) and even plants (soy, almonds, cashew, peanut, sesame, oat). They also make all sorts of other foods with it like butter, yogurt and ice cream. But what happens when the world you end up on doesn't have any of those to make your milk?
This cringe-worthy scene is unfortunately hard to forget. The Giants love to watch stories about made-up characters who travel to fantastic places. One of the most beloved franchises is called Star Wars, they even have a day dedicated to it, May the 4th (get it? May the Force....). In one of its latest installments, their fallen hero is on a strange planet with no cows and few plants. How will he drink milk?! Luckily, he finds a strange creature and discovers that it produces some sort of liquid, imagine that first milking and taste test! But that is what it takes to survive in extreme conditions! You can bet it wasn't the milk he was used to, but he found a way to survive in a place where others may have withered and died - we'll honor Luke Skywalker by calling him an honorary extremophile! And, of course, he goes on to help save the universe, again!
Bon Jour le mon petit microbes! Thanks for having me Coach Timmy! Let's talk about the milk the Giants usually drink. Typical cow's milk collected from domesticated dairy cows and is then pasteurized, killing off many of the native microbes. This process extends the shelf life of the milk. It also makes them all feel a little less icky about drinking another mammals' breast milk.
Not Luke though, he grabs life by the horns, or by the titty I suppose.
Chef! Microcopic 'ears'!
Oh, sorry! Choosing to get his nutritious milk straight from the udder of Thala-siren is pretty exciting, and that beautiful blue/green color, so much more exciting than plain old white!
The Benefits Of Milk
Most milk, at least on our planet, contains copious amounts of oligosaccharides. Oligosaccharides help us grow and are a great food source to beneficial microbiota within the gut microbiome! These sugars may also deter pathogens from setting up camp! Finally, they have been linked to assisting the body's immune system! Human milk contains over 200 different oligosaccharides. This diversity helps establish and build an infant's new microbiome. I wonder how many oligosaccharides Luke was drinking?
Besides oligosaccharides, Luke’s green milk was likely full of a diverse set of microbes. Mother’s milk is one of the earliest introductions of microbes to infants. Human milk is thought to comprise good lactic acid bacteria like Bifidobacterium. Some believe, particularly in humans, a mother’s milk helps seed and protect an infant's gut. So just like mitochondria, the early microbiome also comes from mom. If you don't understand the last sentence, see this blog post!
The microbes found in milk have been studied not only in humans and cows but also in goats, sheep, and water buffalo. All these mammal's milk shows the presence of Pseudomonas and Staphylococcus. These microbes are part of the current core milk microbiota. Pseudomonas and Staphylococcus are also prevalent in almost all microbiome studies meaning they are capable of living, surviving, and thriving in just about any environment - extremophiles!
The field of milk microbiota is still in its infancy and we are galaxies away from finding out what is in Thala-sirens’ milk that makes Luke grimace like that.
We don't have any Thala Sirens here at the Society of the Symbionts, but I've got recipe to make some extreme milks for us!
*Note about recipe...part of being a scientist and survivalist is experimenting - so I won’t give you exact amounts for the ingredients….experiment and have fun!
The Blue Milk Recipe
Frozen Pineapples (couple cups)
Frozen Watermelon (about ⅕ as much as pineapples)
Coconut flakes (few tablespoons)
Lime juice (fresh is best)
Sugar (until desired sweetness)
Blue Food Coloring (until desired color)
Some dairy/coconut/almond/cashew/etc milk (enough to mix all ingredients)
The Green Milk Recipe
Spinach (A handful or two)
Apple (1; we used gala)
Maple syrup (until desired sweetness)
Green Food Coloring (until the desired color)
Some dairy/coconut/almond/cashew/other milk (enough to mix all ingredients)
A banana/avocado or another smoothing ingredient would also be great!
*Optional (ADULTS only!) Add a little, or a lot, no judgment but be safe) of tequila! Straws are also optional but highly recommended...especially if they are reusable, we don't want Ms. Myco Rhiza getting upset about plastic straws!
Place ingredients in a blender. Blend. TaDone! You’re a chef/scientist and survivalist now!
Keep experimenting until the flavor is just perfect!
*Note scientists usually don’t drink/eat/smell their experiments….that’s a no-no in labs. But here it is ok.