BY KATHY HESTER
It happens to me every year around this time. I’ve indulged little by little until I’m back on the path to unhealthy eating again. Then comes January 1 and it’s time to eat virtuous all over again. It’s hard to go from one extreme to another.
Don’t wait until New Year’s Day to work towards your goals. You can have food that’s good for you that seems decadent too. Just take a look at some of the suggestions and recipes below. I bet none of your guests realize you’ve healthied up their favorites!
There’s still time to do a little holiday baking. I know, you’re thinking with this healthy eating that you have to give up all your sweets. All it takes are a few modifications to get some of your old favorites whipped into shape.
• Use whole wheat pastry flour or whole wheat flour in place of refined white flour. Whole wheat pastry flour is made from a softer wheat than regular whole wheat flour. The pastry flour is also ground finer so your baked goods cook up lighter too.
• Instead of all that butter and oil, try substituting applesauce for at least ½ of what’s called for. In place of eggs add in some ground flax seed mixed with warm water to make a paste. 1 tablespoon ground flax to 2 tablespoons warm water equals one egg.
Here are a few recipes to try. They all remind me of the holidays without being too bad for you.
Here are a few cocktail options that will tantalize your taste buds while being festive and they are at least slightly healthier than some of your other choices.
Eggnog is one of the worst offenders at the holiday with tons of fat and sugar. Why not try one of the vegan versions that are out there? There is one by SoDelicious made out of coconut and two soy nogs from EarthBalance and Silk. Each one has a unique flavor and no cholesterol!
Another way to lighten up a drink is to make your own simple syrup. That allows you the freedom to add less sugar or even substitute agave nectar or stevia for all or some of the sweetener.
You can also use some natural flavorings in place of some of the sugary liqueurs. Orange and almond extracts are a great way to cut the sugar and calories in your favorite drink.
Kathy Hester wants to show you how tasty vegan food can be. Her favorite way to get dinner on the table is by using one of her many slow cookers. So, it’s no surprise that her first cookbook is The Vegan Slow Cooker. Kathy lives in Durham, N,C., with 2 cats, a dog, and a picky eater. When she’s not feeding the family she writes two blogs HealthySlowCooking and BusyVegan in addition to her other freelance writing.