Right now I am in Austin, Texas kicking up my heels and eating too much barbecue (is that possible?). I thought you might enjoy this article from Debbie Keene, a physician and health writer from Wisconsin. She offers a variety of ways to cut down on calories during typical summer barbecue parties without sacrificing any flavor or sense of satisfaction.
I will be back soon with reports on the fun of BlogHer Food ’13 and a rundown on the goodies we got to sample. Happy Festive Friday!!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Summertime — time to pull the cover off the grill and host outdoor picnics poolside for friends and family. Replace heavy stews and soups from the winter with light and refreshing summer fare. Imagine fresh fruit, grilled meat and veggies and icy cool drinks. Especially since it’s bathing suit season, keep your summery eats low calorie and healthy. Picnic favorites, such as burgers and potato salad, are packed with calories and weigh you down. Throw a summertime soiree that’s nutritious and delicious by serving these light summertime options:
Main Dishes by Star Chefs
A successful outdoor dinner party should have a main dish to serve as the anchor or focal point of the meal. Up the ante at your barbecue and serve Grilled Fish Tacos with tequila marinade and cilantro lime crema as featured on “Guy’s Big Bites” on the Food Network. Guy Fieri’s tacos are stuffed with grilled and skewered chopped Mahi Mahi filets. His red cabbage slaw adds refreshing crunch and the cilantro lime cream sauce gives a tangy kick.
Step outside barbecue traditions with delicious grilled cheese sandwiches on the grill. Play up Grown-up Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Granny Smith apple slices, grilled onions and red peppers, baby arugula and gouda on rye or sourdough bread. Get creative! Avocado and tomato also taste incredible on grilled cheese. Once you start to play with these recipes, you’ll become a pro in the kitchen and master at the grill. For easy, breezy and fun menu items, “Guy’s Big Bites” is aired on Food Network and is offered with most DirectTV specials.
Light & Veggie
A picnic just isn’t a picnic without a bowl filled with potato salad. Take a Rachael Ray spin on this barbecue favorite by lightening it with Greek yogurt. You’ll simply substitute Greek yogurt for half of the mayonnaise used in traditional recipes. Pair potato salad with grilled citrus-marinated veggie kebobs that burst with fresh flavor, color and healthiness. You can trade orange juice for vinegar and chili powder with another type of seasoning for your veggie marinade. Lightly charred and glazed with marinade, the skewered eggplants, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and sweet onions will satisfy every taste bud.
As the weather warms up, every type of fruit imaginable seems to be in season, from delicate berries to juicy watermelon. Rather than cut up your favorite summertime fruits and toss them in a bowl to make a ho-hum salad, make fruit exciting by threading cubes of melon and whole strawberries onto skewers. Also, certain fruits grill well and taste great with a unique, smoky flavor. Avoid grilling delicate fruit, such as strawberries or raspberries. Instead, grill up peaches and pineapple for a divine treat. Serve grilled fruit with a scoop of ice cream or dollop of Greek yogurt topped with cinnamon, honey or coconut.
Adding a splash of alcohol to a fruity drink can actually boost the antioxidant power of the fruit, according to Eating Well. For a tasty beverage, serve blueberry lime margaritas, which is an icy drink still packed with nutrients. Prepare a pitcher of fresh lemonade for the kids and guests who want to sip on a sweet beverage but don’t prefer alcohol. Substitute Stevia for sugar to keep it lower in calories.
Create a New Tradition Today!
Unauthorized use, distribution, and/or duplication of proprietary material on The Heritage Cook without prior approval is prohibited. This includes copying and reprinting content and photographs. If you have any questions or would like permission, I can be contacted via email: theheritagecook (at) comcast (dot) net. Feel free to quote me, just give credit where credit is due, link to the recipe, and please send people to my website, www.theheritagecook.com. Please see the Disclaimers page for additional details.