If you associate the words “holiday foods” with guilt, it’s time to stop the blame game. Dr. Oz revealed on his talk show that you can eat delicious foods around the holidays without wrecking your diet goals. It all has to do with smart substitutes, careful planning, and choosing the right combinations.
For example, consider Geoffrey Zakarian’s Pine Nut and Pomegranate Salad, which makes 6 servings at just 181 calories each. It’s full of holiday bright colors but also packed with health, from protein in the pine nuts to healthy fats in the olive oil.
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp shallots, minced
- 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
- 4 cups frisée, washed, dried and torn (about 1 medium head)
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmiagiano-Reggiano
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Scatter the nuts on a rimmed sheet pan and toast until lightly golden, about 8 minutes. Let cool.
2. In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar and shallots. Whisk in the oil in a slow steady stream to make a smooth dressing. Season with salt and pepper. Whisk in the mint. Add the frisée, pomegranate seeds, and pine nuts. Toss to coat everything with the dressing.
3. Sprinkle with the cheese and toss to combine. Adjust the seasoning to taste and serve.
If you’re seeking a sweet treat to serve with coffee after a meal, steer clear of those cakes and pies. Instead, consider an intriguing biscotti recipe that uses natural cocoa powder and espresso for fabulous flavor and exceptionally low calories.
Geoffrey Zakarian’s Espresso Biscotti makes 36 servings with just 68 calories per delight.
While some biscotti lack flavor or are too dry, this recipe incorporates orange zest and almonds to turn it from boring to bazinga!
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tbsp instant espresso
- 1 tbsp natural cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 large eggs plus 1 large egg yolk
- 1 cup sugar
- zest of 1 small orange
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, espresso, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the eggs, yolk, and sugar on medium speed until thoroughly combined, about 1 minute. Add the flour mixture and mix just until a dough forms. Add the zest and almonds and continue to combine.
2. Divide the dough in half and form into two 12-inch long logs, about 3 inches apart, on a baking sheet. Work on a floured surface if the dough is slightly tacky. Bake until puffed and cooked through, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and carefully move the logs onto a cooing rack. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F.
3. Let cool until you can handle the logs, about 10 minutes. With a serrated knife, cut on a slight bias into 1/2-inch thick biscotti. Arrange the biscotti on a baking sheet and bake until firm on the top side, about 10 to 12 minutes. Flip them all and bake until the other side is firm, 10 to 12 minutes more. Cool completely on baking racks.