Holiday Temptations

The holidays are upon us!  How will YOU resist the temptation that comes with the season?

Here are a few helpful tips.

  1. Drink lots of water.  It will hydrate you and keep you feeling full longer.
  2. Plan time for exercise.  Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevents weight gain.
  3. Assess party buffets before filling your plate.  Choose only your favorite foods and make sure to include vegetables and fruits to keep your plate balanced.
  4. Bring your own holiday dish to the holiday gathering.  We have two delicious recipes to share with you.  (Please see below)
  5. Take the focus off food.  Plan group activities with family and friends that aren’t all about food. Try serving a holiday meal to the community, playing games or going on a walking tour of decorated homes.

Here are 2 healthy versions of our classic Thanksgiving and Christmas favorites.  Enjoy!

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Pumpkin Pie – By Whole Health Everyday 

Crust:

1.5cups Gluten Free Flour

3 T sweet rice flour

1.5 T brown sugar

¾ tsp xanthan gum

½ tsp sea salt

1/2cup plus 2T palm shortening

2 1/5 tsp Ener-G egg replacer mixed with 3T rice milk

1T lemon juice

Preheat oven to 375

In a standing mixed combine the dry ingredients: flours, sugar, xanthan, and salt

Add the shortening and mix about 1 min

Add the egg replacer and lemon and mix until it forms a ball, about 1min

Turn the dough onto parchment paper and mold into a disk – top with another piece of parchment and roll to about ¼ inch think and about 2 inches wider than your pie dish. Grease the pie dish with more shortening.  Remove the top parchment and flip the dough into the dish.  Press down the dough into the corners and then remove the parchment paper.  Prick the dough with a fork 5 times.  Bake 25min until golden brown.  Cool at room temp.

Filling:

2cups pumpkin puree

2T coconut oil, melted

¾ cup brown sugar

1/3 cup maple syrup

½ tsp salt

1tsp vanilla

½ tsp cinnamon

1 tsp ginger, fresh grated

¼ tsp nutmeg

2 ½ cups cold rice milk

¼ cup tapioca starch

1 packet .3 ounces vegan gelatin (or use non vegan)

In a small sauce pan combine the first 9 ingredients and only ¼ cup of the milk – whisk.  Bring this mixture to a simmer and cook for 5minutes stirring often.

Meanwhile whisk the starch and ¼ cup more of the milk.  Pour into the above mixture  and whisk continuously for 2 more minutes and remove all lumps.  Remove from heat and set aside.

In a small saucepan whisk the remaining milk with the gelatin and stir until it reaches a full boil.   Then pour into the above mixture.  Do this quickly and whisk well to combine.   Pour into the cooled pie shell.

Refrigerate for about 3 hours before serving.

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Green Bean Casserole – By Whole Health Everyday

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a 2 quart baking dish with coconut oil

2. Prepare the mushroom soup and friend onions – recipes below

3. Wash and trim about 4-5cups (1lb) fresh green beans

4. Place green beans in a pot and cover with about 2cups soup.  Simmer for 10min until beans are softened.  Pour into baking dish and top with onions.

5. Bake 15min

Fried onions

3 tablespoons coconut oil

¼ cup rice milk unsweetened

1 sweet onion, thinly sliced

½   teaspoons salt

½  teaspoon white pepper

¼  cup gluten-free flour mix (or use brown rice flour)

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Whisk flour, paprika, garlic powder, and salt in a shallow dish. Toss onions in flour – then dip in milk – then toss in flour again. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion along with any remaining flour mixture and cook, turning once or twice, until golden and crispy, 4 to 5 minutes.

Cream of Mushroom Soup

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, chopped

3 large carrots, chopped

1 pound cremini mushrooms, chopped

4-5 cups veg stock

fresh thyme – just pull the leaves from a few stems

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup raw cashews

2 tablespoons sweet rice flour –whisked with 1/4cp veg stock

In a large pot sauté the onions in the olive oil until soft, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic, carrots, and half the mushrooms; sauté for a few minutes more.

Add the stock, herbs, pepper, and salt. Simmer for 15min. Add the cashews and sweet rice flour and simmer another 15min. With an immersion hand blender, blend   until smooth and creamy.   Add the other half of the chopped mushrooms and simmer 10 more min.

Makes about 5 cups of soup.   Use half for casserole.

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Most importantly, enjoy the holidays, plan time for activity, incorporate healthy recipes into your holiday meals and don’t restrict yourself from enjoying your favorite holiday foods.  Just make smart choices.  In the long run, your mind and body will thank you and so will I!  🙂