When I think back to all the New Year’s Eve parties that I’ve ever gone to or hosted, I can’t remember one that didn’t involve pizza, chicken wings, frozen meatballs, chips and dip, soda, and beer. So I was thinking today about what kinds of foods we should have now that we eat non-processed foods on a daily basis. Many of our friends and family, though, do not eat like us, so trying to come up with ideas that will please a crowd of people who eat a Standard American Diet can be a bit daunting. Since we changed how we eat, I have found holidays and other family gatherings the most challenging, so I thought it might be helpful if I put together a list of suggestions for healthy fare that everyone can enjoy.
Most everyone loves meatballs. Why not use your favorite meatball recipe and make it with grass-fed beef. Make some marinara sauce in the crock pot and simmer the pre made meatballs in the sauce or use the tomato mint sauce recipe from my recipe page…so much healthier than those prepackaged meatballs you get in the freezer section of the grocery store (and tastier, too).
I also suggest a veggie tray. Many party goers love some nice vegetables with dip, and the dip is usually the unhealthy part of this popular combo. Instead of that tub-o-dip from the dairy section at the local market, try this amazing version of avocado dip. Take 1 avocado and process together with 1/4 c of organic salsa. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon in with the avocado, and add some ground garlic pepper to taste. You may even want to double this recipe because this stuff is just that good. Even my veggie-phobic son gobbled this dip up like there was no tomorrow!
This dip is also great served with cheese crisps. Cheese crisps are simply thin slices of sharp cheddar (or other hard cheese that you like) cut into 1-inch squares and baked on parchment paper at 400 degrees until they turn bubbly and crispy – about 15 minutes or so. When you take them out of the oven, blot the oil from the cheese with paper towels and let cool. I guarantee you won’t have any leftovers with this snack!
What about dessert? How about a fruit tray? Even better, take cut up fruit and put it on skewers. Fancy! Kids love this; they feel like they are getting a special treat, and almost all kids love fruit. You might also like my cashew ginger bark to complement the fruit. This is a spicy treat that’s healthy, too!
Most important! Enjoy your time with family and friends regardless of the menu! Happy New Year to all my readers; I hope you welcome the new year as an opportunity to be everything that you want! Out with the old; in with the new! 2014 is our year to shine!