Tips for Creating Healthy Jewish Holiday Recipes
Jewish holiday recipes are known for their sweetness, their high fat content and their richness. However, I have always been on a special diet because of allergies and easy weight gain, so for each holiday season I still want to sample my favorite holiday recipes. The following tips are what I adhere to for all the recipe conversions I have made over the years and hope they will help you to have a happy and healthy holiday season.
If you don’t want to alter your traditional Jewish recipes to fit your dietary needs then you have a second option. Your second option is to alter the size of your portioning. By taking a smaller portion you will cut down on the sugar, carbohydrates, fats, salt and calories on your plate. You can further trick your mind into thinking that you have a larger portion is to use a smaller plate and even smaller utensils.
Add More Smell to Your Dishes
Another way to cut down on unhealthy ingredients in your traditional Jewish holiday recipes without sacrificing taste is to utilize the properties of scent to enhance the taste of your dishes. Scent can be added to your dishes by using spices and flavor extracts. One of my favorite holiday smells is almond and butter. Fortunately both of these scents can be added with flavor extracts of butter and almond. Vanilla is another flavor extract that is widely available in shopping markets. Keep in mind that authentic extracts are going to be more expensive and more potent than imitation extracts, which are less expensive but less potent.
Use Healthier Ingredients
Most people who alter their holiday recipes to make them healthier do so by changing unhealthy ingredients to healthier ingredients. For example, many people today substitute coconut, olive or canola oil for butter. You can also substitute light mayonnaise for real mayonnaise and low fat cheese for full fat cheeses. Using leaner cuts of meat is another way to make your holiday dinner healthier. For example, if you normally serve a beef brisket during your family holiday celebration consider using a learner brisket like one from bison instead of beef. I prefer to use the 1st cut of the brisket and have the butcher remove most of the fat.
Add Vegetables Instead of High Calorie Ingredients
Another option that you have to enhance the healthiness of your holiday dishes is to load them with complimentary vegetables instead of loading them with high fat or high calorie items. For example, if you are making a pizza or lasagna, add complimentary vegetables like tomatoes, olives and celery. Other vegetables that you can sneak into marinara sauces include carrots (diced into small pieces), potatoes, peas and beans.
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