A healthier Christmas makeover meal

A roast turkey with all the trimmings is a very traditional Christmas meal. But take a look at these recipes which may help make your feast a little lighter, while remaining just as delicious.

Christmas is often a time that is synonymous with excess and indulgence. We not only tend to indulge in more treats than usual but we also tend to over eat, especially with plenty of buffet-style meals on offer. 

“Overeating is common during the festive season,” warns dietitian, Roslyn D’Angelo. “Socialising around food can sometimes lead us to eat more than we normally would, compared to if we’d prepared a meal at home. 

“As well as meal portions, we’re probably indulging in more of those ‘treat’ foods more often. I think it’s important to enjoy your favourite foods, but try to enjoy balance as well.”

Ros’ top tips?

  • Load plates with fruits and vegetables first.
  • If you indulge in a five-course lunch, enjoy a light meal or snack for dinner.
  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
  • Try to incorporate some physical exercise into your celebrations; think long afternoon family walks or backyard cricket.  
  • Try some to make some healthy tweaks to your recipes, like this delicious recipe for Rosemary Turkey Skewers with Festive Jeweled Salad. 

Rosemary turkey skewers with festive jeweled salad

Tip: Skinless turkey breast is a lean protein with very little fat. Pair these tasty skewers with a fresh salad for a light and healthier festive lunch.

Serves: 4-6
Difficulty: easy


Ingredients

For the skewers

  • 1kg turkey breast fillets
  • 10-12 woody sprigs of rosemary, bottom ¾ stripped
  • 7 stalks lemon thyme, picked
  • juice of 1 lemon, reserve zest for serving
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 30ml olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Lamb skewers

For the salad 

  • ½ cup wild rice, cooked as per packet instructions
  • 1 cup frozen peas, cooked
  • 1 packed cup mint, torn
  • ½ Spanish onion, diced
  • 1 medium pomegranate, seeds only
  • 100g Persian feta
  • 60ml olive oil
  • 30ml balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
Christmas salad

Method

  1. Slice turkey breast into long strips about 1.5cm thick. Set aside.
  2. Mix together garlic, mustard, lemon zest, thyme, honey and olive oil, and coat turkey well. Put in the fridge to marinade for at least an hour or ideally overnight.
  3. Thread turkey lengthways onto rosemary skewers, and cook on a bbq or griddle pan on a high heat for about four minutes each side or until cooked through.
  4. For the salad, toss wild rice, cooked peas, mint, onion and pomegranate seeds together in a bowl.
  5. Mix the olive oil, vinegar and molasses in a small bowl and season. Dress the salad with as much or little of the dressing as suits your taste and top with crumbled Persian feta.
  6. Serve together with turkey skewers.
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