It’s officially 2 days till the New Year and I’ve seen the countdown all over social media….”2 more days till my detox starts!” “48 more hours till the Big Diet!” Time’s ticking down to D-Day. Diet Day, that is. So why go cold turkey and suffer through an unsustainable juice cleanse when you can incorporate healthy, in season elements that keep you on track? Give up dessert? NO WAY! Cut out all the cocktails? Uh, NOT SO MUCH. These recipes are not only perfect for your New Year’s Eve party, they can help inspire some realistic goals for getting back to goodferya meals in 2016. And, lemme be the first to tell you, they cut the calories without skimping on flavor.
1 1/2 cups Wonderful Halos mandarins juiced
1 1/2 cups apple juice
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 stick cinnamon
1 star anise
1 tsp whole allspice
Thinly sliced mandarins
Juice Wonderful Halos mandarins and lemons. Strain out pulp and set aside.
Combine all ingredients in medium sauce pan or crock pot.
Heat over medium-low heat until sugar has dissolved and juices are hot.
Serve garnished with sliced mandarins.
For Ricotta cream:1 cup Ricotta, 1 cup Mascarpone Cheese, 3 tbsp Confectioners sugar (powdered) 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tbsp of Lemon (a bit of zest) Pinch of sea salt
For Grapefruit Brulee: A few grapefruit wedges, 1/2 cup Brown Sugar, ½ cup crushed Pistachios
Combine Ricotta cream ingredients in a small bowl and chill for 30 minutes.
Using a food processor, pulverize peeled pistachios.
Sprinkle brown sugar across peeled grapefruit wedge. Using a culinary torch or oven broiler, melt the brown sugar.
Garnish with crushed pistachios.
12 cups popcorn
1 cup shelled pistachios, lightly chopped
1 cup dried cherries or cranberries
½ cup light corn syrup
¾ cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup unsalted butter
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. baking soda
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large roasting pan combine popcorn, dried cherries and pistachios, mixing thoroughly.
In a medium saucepan, combine syrup, sugar, butter and salt. Over medium heat bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Continue stirring and boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and baking soda. Be careful as mixture will bubble up.
Pour syrup mixture over popcorn and stir to coat well. Popcorn will still be warm from the syrup. To keep your hands clean, slip them into two plastic bags and coat bags with cooking spray or butter. Working quickly, form popcorn mixture into balls about 3-inch (6.5 cm.) in diameter. Place on parchment-lined baking sheet to cool.
1 oz. freshly squeezed pomegranate juice* or POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice
3/4 oz. vodka
1/2 oz. liqueur (like Chambord)
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
3/4 oz. simple syrup
Assemble the first five ingredients in a mixing glass and shake well with ice. Strain into a flute and top with champagne. Serve and enjoy!
*I was compensated by The Wonderful Company for this post and segment, but all opinions are my own.
Here’s the segment on Let’s Talk Live!