A Bountiful Thanksgiving
November brings thoughts of fall colors, warm hearty foods, and cozy nights by the fire. It also reminds us that a bountiful Thanksgiving awaits us!
The holidays don’t have to mean over-indulgence or the end of your efforts towards a healthier lifestyle. Try including some of the following delicious foods in your holiday cooking.
Add Nutrition to Stuffing and Side dishes: Mix in celery, onions, mushrooms, carrots, beans and even raisins and apples to boost fiber and flavor. See Recipe below!
Turkey: White meat is the leanest and dark has a higher fat content. Go easy on gravy!
Cranberry Sauce – Go natural! Fresh Cranberry sauce is a cinch to prepare, has a much fresher and delicious flavor.
Lighten-up! Use lower fat versions of sour cream, substitute plain yogurt in creamy dips and mashed potatoes. Try olive or canola oil instead of butter for a heart healthier fat option.
Vegetarian delights – with more than seven million vegetarians nationwide, it’s likely you’ll have a vegetarian guest. Combine grains like quinoa, amaranth, millet and barley with bell peppers, apples, dried apricots and nuts for a dish all of your guests will want to try.
Makes: 4 Servings
- 1 cup dry Quinoa
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 cups frozen corn, thawed
- 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 5 ounce package baby spinach
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans
- 2 ounces crumbled goat cheese (optional)
- 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 6 tablespoons well-chopped kalamata olives, pitted
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon salt & black pepper
- Cook quinoa according to package instructions.
- Add dressing ingredients into a jar and shake well. Set aside.
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add corn and chickpeas and cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Stir frequently.
- Stir in spinach for 2 to 3 minutes, until wilted.
- Stir in quinoa and pecans.
- Add desired amount of dressing and stir until fully coated.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Top with goat cheese.
Fresh Cranberry Sauce
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 (12-ounce) package Fresh Cranberries
Combine sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to boil; add cranberries, return to boil. Reduce heat and boil gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover and cool completely at room temperature. Refrigerate until serving time. Makes 2 1/4 cups.
- Freshen up the flavor by using orange juice instead of water.
- You can reduce the sugar if you prefer a more tart sauce
I have added a ½ cup pineapple chunks once the sauce is cold, its delicious!
Recipe by: Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA