I can imagine nothing worse than facing the holidays on a diet. Parties with fun, little high-carb, high-fat finger foods and cocktails; Big, festive dinners; Seasonal holiday candy (I’m not the only one with a severe problem avoiding peppermint bark, am I?); plus those favorites that we make ourselves.
I mean, I’m trying just to do what I need to do to get through the day with my sensible diet, so when my husband mentions something about all the amazing cookies that I bake every year? Yeah. I hadn’t thought about that. Not looking forward to that festival of sugar and flour.
At Thanksgiving, I survived the carbohydrate challenge—largely because we stayed close to home (only because my husband was sick). While he rested and the kids watched the parade, I threw together a last-minute dinner featuring a roasted turkey breast and boxed stuffing, fresh cranberry sauce (with added orange zest and fresh juice to offset a slight reduction in sugar), and cranberry bread in lieu of pie. I used half whole-wheat flour and half all-purpose in the bread, and my picky family didn’t notice the difference. Next time I plan to try this coconut flour I’ve heard so much about, which will cut the carb load even further.
Even with our mini feast that left off so many family favorites, everyone was happy. And my husband even said he felt better not having had so many carbs with his dinner. I filled most of my plate with spinach salad, going easy on the stuffing and other carbs. But I did splurge on a heart-healthy glass of wine.
And next year, while we’ll probably make the green bean casserole and the cornbread-sausage stuffing again, we might just forego the potatoes. But since my kids are probably the only kids in America who actually hate mashed potatoes, I’m thinking this will suit them just fine.
But still the cookies loom; I know I’ll be running the gauntlet of sugar cookie cutouts and Russian teacakes and jam thumbprints and peanut butter and chocolate chip and oatmeal butterscotch and chocolate peppermint. I predict many more spinach salads in my future.