SOMEBODY in your family or circle of friends has to make the first attempt at making healthier holiday meals happen.
Why not let it be you? Just please do not announce it. As Nike says, “Just do it”! Everyone will feel better whether they will admit it or not. And with January just around the corner, why not give yourself and others an advantage for the typical new weight and health goals for the upcoming year?
So, my friends, here are some tricks, suggestions and secrets for making a healthier holiday happen.
1. Most important is to plan ahead.
When pushed into just getting it done and making it all happen, it’s too late to start doing things differently. Get your menus done now for all that is coming up in the next few weeks. You will give yourself the gift of a peaceful spirit knowing at least what you are going to be doing. This is my personal priceless gift–just knowing what I will be doing.
2. Make it pretty.
One of my best tricks to enhance/upgrade the very simplest of foods is to serve them in lovely dishes. With all the sales and outlets now for reasonable tableware, this is easy and fun to accomplish.
3. Make it taste good.
Sounds obvious for sure, but nothing is gained with a healthy dish that no one likes or will eat. Use tested and reliable sources for your recipes or ideas.
Looking at our free download on holiday foods would definitely put you into a new level of healthy, but oh so delicious, holiday cooking.
4. Do not call it healthy!
Enough said 🙂
5. Set a beautiful table.
This is SO important really, and whether you agree or not, it is noticed and appreciated and makes any food a special experience. Use candles, place mats, tablecloths, flowers, etc., but give it some thought ahead of time and you will reap the rewards of your efforts!
6. Use fresh ingredients when possible.
An example would be fresh parsley. Difference is not only in the taste but in the color; what a great garnish, too. Fresh green beans, freshly baked rolls… you get the idea.
7. Get out of your comfort zone and try some new ideas.
8. Of course, keep some of your “sacred traditions.”
9. Don’t make a big deal out of changing anything.
10. For shared meals, tactfully give suggestions or even a recipe for those offering to bring a dish to your holiday meal or gathering.
I have done this for years, and most often, it is met with a sigh of relief for those not having to come up with something out of the blue. Most people like suggestions. Of course, there are always going to be those that just have to have their thing, and so be it!
So there you have it… my thoughts and ideas on cooking smarter this holiday season. What a true gift you will be giving those you love. You will be giving the gift of health and appreciating the beautiful experience in sharing an intentionally “designed” holiday celebration meal.
This is truly a priceless gift.