Staying healthy over the holidays, experts advise, requires at least two simple steps: planning ahead and taking time for yourself.
Fortunately, this can be simpler than many suspect because the “cool aisles” of the grocery store have many “secret weapons” to make holiday food preparation and entertaining easier and more enjoyable. Frozen and refrigerated foods provide an excellent opportunity for planning ahead for the holidays so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time for yourself.
It helps to “stock up” your freezer and fridge with:
• Delicious breakfast selections—waffles, pancakes, eggs, cheeses and breakfast sandwiches; combine fruit with yogurts and juices for smoothies to make holiday mornings even more fun.
• Super snacks and appetizers—cheeses, dips, egg rolls, shrimp, pizza, wings and meatballs; serve on attractive platters and let the party begin.
• Dinner plans—the frozen aisles offer a variety of fully prepared entrées; they can be on the table for your family in minutes on busy nights.
• Side-dish pleasures—ready-to-heat-and-eat vegetables, potatoes and breads can make holiday meals less work.
• Delightful desserts—fill the freezer and refrigerator with enough delicious pies, cakes, ice cream, puddings, whipped toppings and ready-to-bake cookies to please your family, friends and guests.
Here, from the experts at the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA), is a delicious, easy holiday dessert you can serve with a “homemade touch”:
- 1 frozen cheesecake
- 10 ounces sweet or sour pitted cherries (frozen works well)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- ½ cup water
- Fresh mint
Thaw cheesecake according to package directions. To make topping, combine cherries, lemon juice, sugar, cornstarch and water in medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Once boiling, cook it for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, then remove from heat. Cool completely. Spread on top of cheesecake. Garnish with mint leaves. Serves 4−6.