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Beyond Thanksgiving: A Week of Healthy Meals and Recipes

Healthy dishes to serve your holiday visitors all week long.

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Thursday (Thanksgiving)

Breakfast: Simply bake or assemble the "make ahead" breakfast you put together on Wednesday.

The Feast (Lunch/Dinner): If you're hosting, you can make your day easier by delegating a few dishes to family members or family. If Aunt Martha makes the best pumpkin pie, ask if she wouldn't mind bringing one. And maybe your sister has a new stuffing recipe she wants to try --sign her up! While many desserts, appetizers and side dishes can be assembled the day before, certain key components are best made the day of, like the roasted turkey, green salad and some vegetable side dishes like Easy Green Bean Amandine. You can actually make the mashed potatoes a day before, but you might need to add more milk to soften the texture once they're reheated.

Easy Green Beans Amandine

WebMD Weight Loss Clinic members: Journal as: 1/2 cup 'vegetables with 1 tsp fat maximum'.

1 24-ounce bag extra fine French green beans
1 1/2 tablespoons whipped butter
2 tablespoons Amaretto (or similar almond liqueur)
1/4 cup toasted flavored sliced almonds

1. Briefly rinse frozen beans in hot water from the tap to lightly thaw. Start heating a large, nonstick frying pan, skillet, or wok over medium-high heat. Add the whipped butter and let it brown just slightly (about a minute), stirring constantly.
2. Add the green beans and saute© about 2 minutes, stirring often. Drizzle Amaretto liqueur over the top and continue to saute© 2 to 3 minutes more or until beans are still a nice green and just tender.
3. Spoon the green beans into a serving bowl and sprinkle the almond slices evenly over the top.

Yield: 8-10 servings

Nutritional Information: Per serving (if 8 per recipe): 73 calories, 2 g protein, 8.5 g carbohydrate, 3.2 g fat (0.9 g saturated fat), 4 mg cholesterol, 3 g fiber, 60 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 38%.

Just A Thought: Everyone wants to save their appetites for the big feast but it's good to have some quick, light appetizers that you can put out before the feast (if your family is having a Thanksgiving dinner) or after the feast, once people get hungry again (if your family is gathering for a Thanksgiving lunch.)

Some easy appetizers for light munching:

Fruit and cheese platter (buy presliced and prepared fruit if you're short on time). Some fruits that complement cheese nicely are pears, apples, grapes, and melon.
Veggie platter (buy presliced or diced vegetables if you are short on time). Good vegetables to use are celery sticks, baby carrots, zucchini and cucumber coins, broccoli and cauliflower florets, sugar snap peas, cherry or grape tomatoes, etc.
Soup can be light if it's broth- or tomato-based (and not creamy or cheesy). You can have homemade soup made and ready to warm up, or keep some store-bought favorites on hand.
A nice hot dip or spread, such as my Parmesan Artichoke Dip, can be quite satisfying when served with high-fiber bread or crackers.

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