Gifts from Santa, yummy treats and parties –yes you guessed right, it’s time to join the Christmas cheer. So are you ready to spread some Christmas joy? It is after all the season to get merry and indulge in your favorite calorie filled deserts. But if you or your friends are concerned about fitting into that perfect New Year’s dress, then we suggest going the healthy way this year. So even though Christmas is hardly about low-fat recipes, throwing a Christmas party doesn’t always have to be all about food overladen with tons of calories.
Here are a few ways to host a wonderful Christmas gathering, without letting your health conscious guests down.
A Healthy Start
Ditch the fried chips and snacks served at the beginning of most parties, for something a little healthier this year. No, we are not suggesting you feed your guests a boring salad or vegetable juice! Try serving grilled veggies with meat and fish as side dishes. Instead of store bought chips, you could even serve homemade zucchini or sweet potato chips. Guacamole salad is a wonderfully healthy as well as a delicious treat for all your vegan as well as vegetarian guests. If you have the time, then you can always prepare a thin wheat crust pizza base at home and top it off with anything your guests prefer.
Balance It Out
While you want to go healthy, you also want your guest to enjoy the food. Winter and the holiday season clubbed together, brings to mind plenty of choices including several healthy ones . Balance out the main dishes by serving a continental dish with some fresh grilled veggies and mashed potatoes. You could even try a winter chicken stew it will need- plenty of fresh vegetables, chicken stock and also lots of water for preparation.
With the chill in the air, this is a great dish to serve. However, make sure to check the water filter and the water you use as you want to avoid catching any water borne diseases or flu especially during the holiday season.
Skimming the Fat
Swap and skim are the magical words that can help you light up the fag end of your year. Swap the full sugars with lower calorie alternatives or add pureed fruit to your deserts to make them lower in calories but not in taste. Fooling your taste buds (and those of your guests) isn’t that difficult, you just need to put on your creative thinking caps.
Try using yoghurt instead of cream for your dips, nuts instead of bread crumbs in soups and salads, fresh apples sauce instead of mayonnaise for the sandwiches. For desserts too you can use Stevia or other lower cal sugar alternatives instead of sugar. Opt for jellies or easy to make sorbets which are light and sweet.
Your body requires as much water in the winter as it does in the summer. But fizzy and carbonated drinks do not quench the thirst and are also not very healthy. Try serving your guests infused water instead. There are several creative concoctions you could try such as- apple and cinnamon, blueberries and raspberries, mint and lime and so on. If you feel your old water filter is not working that well, then now is a good time to invest in a new one. Try water filters from well-known brands such as Kent, so that you know you are drinking completely pure and safe water. While making a cocktail or a mocktail too, you could add fresh fruit and herbs to the drink.
Adding natural fruit to your drink, or soda or water - will not only add flavor but also reduce the added calories or sugar found in pre-made mixes.
Organic and natural seems to be the new mantra of the fit and healthy -and we can carry this into our festivities too. Try honey instead of maple on your pancakes or fresh strawberries and yoghurt or low fat cream.
How about trying a delicious olive oil carrot cake made with wheat flour and sweetened with dates and banana puree instead of the sinful red velvet or an apple strudel baked with fresh organic apples and wheat drizzled with honey.