Wednesday, November 22, 2017

50+ Primal Thoughts, Tips and Recipes for Your Thanksgiving

Christmas or Thanksgiving turkey on rustic wooden tableThe team and I are hustling today, getting everything in place before the holiday weekend, and all of us are already thinking about the festivities (not to mention feasts) to come. So, you’ll forgive me if I indulge the holiday spirit and even wax a bit sentimental—just a little. (Thanksgiving IS my favorite, I’ll admit….) And, on a more practical note, let me share some “best of MDA” tips and recipes for making the holiday weekend healthier and happier.

By now most of us have the “stuff” that typically goes into the meal itself: the food, the napkins, the centerpiece, etc. We’ve unearthed the ginormous serving tray from the basement and dug out the carving set. We’ve taken down the box that holds the heirloom gravy boat. And we’ve likely ironed out the logistics of the occasion: when guests will arrive, when the turkey will go in the oven, and who will bring what. We’ve straightened the house, cajoled the kids to make their bedrooms presentable. Maybe the more ambitious and organized among us have even made a dish or two ahead of time.

Some of us tomorrow will be hosting large gatherings or perhaps celebrating with just immediate family, a partner, or a friend. A few of us will eat alone. Others of us will be guests in friends’ or families’ homes or part of larger groups hosted by religious or neighborhood communities.

It’s true that there’s something about a holiday meal itself—the variety, the rich flavors, the calm (and flurry) of annual preparation rituals, the deep-seated emotional associations and memories. Nonetheless, the day has the potential to feed us in ways the best turkey or family recipe can’t.

Our culture and even individual responsibilities sometimes encourage us to get so caught up in the practical operation of the holiday that we find ourselves shuffling through the motions, hitting all the obligatory dishes and events, but never really touching down emotionally or interpersonally. It’s likely that some of us have previously taken the lesson and pared down or honed in on what we deem the most essential (and enjoyable) aspects of the holiday. (The gathering, the gratitude, the giving of time….)

In this hectic part of year, the suggestion bears repeating. Carpe Diem. Enjoy the moment—the company, the conversation, the chance to connect and tell stories new and old. Start some fresh traditions or revive some old ones (a pre-dinner family game of touch football, an after-dinner walk, an evening around the board games or family albums, a morning of volunteering).

Whether you’re alone or with a whole horde, here’s to making the most of the day in such a way that we’ll all go to bed that night fulfilled (not just full), inspired, at peace, nostalgic, and grateful for the day instead of just relieved the dishes are done or glad we made it through.

Whatever you’ll be doing, wherever you’ll be celebrating, whatever you’ll be looking back on (or looking forward to) in the spirit of thankfulness, everyone here wishes you the best for your holiday.

Thoughts On the Spirit of the Holiday

No matter how we’re observing the day, celebration and gratitude offer significant benefits as well as meaningful reflection.

15 Primal Ways to Savor the Holiday Season

What It Means to Be Thankful for Your Health

The Benefits of Benevolence

The Power of Food Rituals

The Benefits of Giving Thanks

Applying Primal Motivation To the Meal

The big feast doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing event. Where does your health commitment best intersect with your enjoyment of the meal? That’s your sweet spot for approaching the holiday.

A Primal Take On the Holidays: Surviving or Thriving?

The 10-Week Countdown to 2018

The 80/20 Rule

The Importance of Non-Negotiable, “No Matter What” Rules

Gateway Foods: The Slippery Slope of “Just a Bite”

Post-Holiday Triage (For Anyone Who Needs It)

No judgment… We Primal types don’t deal in regret after all. We do, however, pride ourselves in being informed.

Burning Off Holiday Sugar

How to Recover from Holiday Overindulgence

Last (But Certainly Not Least), the Recipes…

Over the years, we’ve put together a small cookbook’s worth of delicious holiday recipes. (It’s hard to pick favorites, but I might have to go with the turkey legs.)

Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Simmered Cranberry Sauce and Spicy Cranberry Relish

Braised Turkey Legs with Fennel and Artichoke Hearts

Heritage Turkey and Mashed Parsnips

Crock Pot Turkey and Primal Stuffing

Cornish Game Hens With Egg and Sausage Stuffing

Crispy Roast Duck with Holiday Seasonings and Sauces

Breadless Cauliflower and Mushroom Stuffing

Ultimate Walnut Pie Crust with Pumpkin Filling

Homemade Turkey Stock

How to Make Turkey Jerky

And for those of you who can never get enough ideas (for this year or next), here’s yet a whole set of menus to choose from.

Have a great holiday week and weekend, everyone. What’s on your mind—and on your menu—this week? I’d love to hear in the comment board. thanks for reading.

The post 50+ Primal Thoughts, Tips and Recipes for Your Thanksgiving appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

from Mark's Daily Apple

CNC Is Broken – Make Sure You’re On The List

Make sure you’re on the list!

It’s a good thing it’s a short week this week because I’m about to lose it with technology issues. If you signed onto Carrots ‘N’ Cake on Monday morning, you might have been redirected to a sketchy gaming site. I’m so sorry about that! Apparently, CNC was attacked by some sort of malware over the weekend. Ughhhh. Thankfully, my web guy was on it right away and got my blog up and running again, but the dashboard is still messed up, which is why I’m sending out a newsletter today. Keep an eye out for it in your inbox this afternoon!

The post CNC Is Broken – Make Sure You’re On The List appeared first on Carrots 'N' Cake.

from Carrots 'N' Cake

Go Green For The Holidays {Tips For Making This Your Healthiest Thanksgiving Yet!}

It’s getting colder here in Virginia, and Thanksgiving and holidays are just around the corner! (Wait, really? Yes, really.)

I’ve written about balance and the focus of choosing activities that make you feel good all of the time. When it comes to food, that can mean different things for everyone. Potlucks, family gatherings and work events all happen around this time of the year, so balance can fall to the wayside – especially in the food realm. As you know my food philosophy focuses on eating real food, rather than following any particular diet. I do love my veggies, though, and find them to be an important part of balancing my meals.

To help keep us on track I am sharing some ideas to find balance this season – all with greeeeens! Here we go.

Start the day with a green monster.

(A smoothie, that is.) : )

A light and bright green breakfast can really set the tone for a healthier day. It’s not a wise idea to sit down to Thanksgiving dinner totally famished, so I always try to eat three regular meals, but I make them on the petite side so I work up a good appetite. Green smoothies are an ideal breakfast on a day that you want something light and nutrient-dense that will set up a good snowball effect for the rest of the day!

Warm up with some tea.

Tea is a great pick-me-up any time of the day, and it will help curb your appetite while you’re waiting for the bird (or tofurkey…!) to cook. Plus, if it’s super cold where you live, you need tea in your life! It’s good for the heart and brain, helps to hydrate you, and is an easy way to find a moment of zen in your day. Try drinking green tea for extra antioxidants.

Find new recipe inspiration.

The best way to ensure there is something with greens on the table is to make it yourself! Even if others don’t seem excited, you can bring your friends and family over to the green side with dishes that combine healthier greens with delicious richer ingredients like bacon or crumbled blue cheese. (And for the days that follow, try this squash salad that is leftover-friendly!)

Keep the plate half full.

Nobody wants to skip out on the best of the best Thanksgiving dishes: the sweet potatoes with marshmallows or the decadent stuffing. Definitely have some of those! But, don’t go totally crazy and get so full that you can’t walk. Have some of your favorites, but balance them out with healthier options too – like that green side you brought. : ) 

Make time for the outdoors.

Eat your greens and see them too! A nice long walk, especially after a big meal, does wonders for the mind and body. It’s great for digestion and an active way to get family and friends together outside. Maybe all of the green leaves have turned and fallen, but the evergreens will carry you through! 

What are your favorite ways to “go green” during the holidays?

The post Go Green For The Holidays {Tips For Making This Your Healthiest Thanksgiving Yet!} appeared first on Kath Eats Real Food.

from Kath Eats Real Food

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

For those of you who celebrate, Mini Chef and I wish you all a very happy holiday season.

We are taking today and tomorrow off to be with family and will return on… Read more →

from The Gracious Pantry