This time of year, our waist line grows as our patience shortens with the rush of the holidays around us. However, there is nothing better than celebrating with family friends, and co-workers. But those endless trays of pigs wrapped in a blanket and decadent cheese platters can take their toll. What is a health minded individual to do when planning a festive, yet nutritious, holiday event?
Remember, it’s what we do 80% of the time that gives us the 20% to play with, notes our sage nutrition advisor, Johanna Thorn, N.C. Johanna has provided us with some helpful tips to make this holiday both happier and healthier. Not only did she provide us with her favorite holiday treats, but also her guarded recipe for mulled wine. Mmmmmm.
Nibbles & Noshes
- Stuff mushroom caps with pesto (use your favorite organic premade version from your local health food grocery store) and bake
- Skewer 2-3 shrimp, coat with pesto and place under broiler until shrimp turns pink
- Create a beautiful antipasti plate with several flavors of olives (brown and green are always welcome), two to three types of living crackers, a variety of cheeses, a few of your favorite micro greens, sundried tomatoes, roasted red peppers, pickles and raw unpasteurized sauerkraut
- Make a fresh herb dip for warm crusty bread: blend 1-2 cups of your favorite fresh herbs (oregano, thyme, sage, parsley, chives or basil, chives, cilantro with a dash of sea salt) with 1-2 cups olive oil or for a non carb option drizzle over Greek yogurt, feta cubes or cottage cheese. These can be served in decorative individual cups or shot glasses.
- Who doesn’t love hot soup on a cold day: serve it as an hors d’oeuvre using decorative shot glasses, garnish with fresh micro greens or a small dollop of the above herb mixture, or fresh grated Parmesan
- To satisfy your sweet tooth, pick up some organic truffles from your favorite supplier or organic ice creams in delicious holiday flavors like peppermint, pumpkin, eggnog and top with candied roasted nuts such as pecans, walnuts; served in decorative individual serving cups
- Traditional and non-dairy eggnog: Johann’s favorite – So Delicious Dairy free Nog coconut milk beverage; sprinkle with cinnamon, nutmeg
- Mulled wine – a holiday staple! See Johann’s recipe below.
Mulled Wine Recipe
- 2 bottles organic sulphite free red wine
- ½ cup filtered water
- ¼ cup organic raw sugar or can use organic raw agave (1/8 cup)
- 4 sticks cinnamon
- 5 whole cloves
- 1 organic orange – sliced into rounds
- 1 organic lemon – sliced into rounds
- Add water, sugar, cinnamon and cloves into a pot and set on stove top
- Bring mixture to a slow boil for 5 minutes and stir. Remove from heat for several minutes
- Add wine slowly while stirring along with orange and lemon
- Warm on low heat for 40 minutes without boiling.
- Strain wine and serve!
Share your favorite holiday treats below!