Wellness and prevention information from the experts at the Penny George Institute for Health and Healing

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Holiday recipes

by Kelly McBride, LAc

As our days grow shorter and we move into the holidays, we have two strong pulls on our mind, body and spirit.  One pull is to gather friends and family together, eat great food and celebrate being together. The other is to move our attention inward, rest, seek quiet spaces and watch the landscape change and snow fall.  Although these pulls may feel like opposites, they don’t have to be, and it is important to honor both.  One way to embrace both is to make recipes that reflect both the celebration and the quiet.

For the pull toward celebration with friends and family, I think about desserts.  When cooking for family at this time of year, everyone’s dietary restrictions come to mind.  After a long search, I have found a rich, moist brownie recipe that meets those needs. Even “the people who can eat whatever they want” love this recipe.  This is an all-natural, grain-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free and, potentially, egg-free recipe (depending on how you like your brownies).  Are you asking what ingredients could possibly be left after you take all those things out?  The answer: the best ones!  Skeptical?  Give this recipe for Great Zucchini Brownies a try and you will be convinced!

Because this dessert has lots of protein, you won’t feel weighed down after eating it.

Now for the recipe that nourishes us when we yearn for quiet reflection and rest:  Balsamic Root Vegetables. Root vegetables are very grounding – both by their energetic nature, as well as the fact that they are full of carbohydrates.  After eating this, just think to yourself “Nap time – here I come!”  This recipe is sweet, rather than savory.

Whether you are craving some quiet time to rest and recover, or you are ready to get out and celebrate with friends and family, honor yourself, the season and the activity you have planned with foods that support you and what you need.  A simple way to remember this is to add protein to your diet when you need energy for the celebration, and add carbohydrates to your diet when you need to settle down and feel quiet.

Wishing you a wonderful winter season filled with friends and family balanced with quiet and rest!