If the temptations of holiday snacking are too much for you, be a game changer and make some healthy, tasty party mix to munch on.
Oscar Wilde wrote, "I can resist anything except temptation."
True enough, especially this time of year. Those of you who know me know that I'm a big guy. I always reach for crunchy carbs when I want to snack, so I decided to try and make a party mix that I can eat without guilt and without popping buttons. Yesterday's snow was a perfect opportunity to get in the kitchen and experiment. Here's my first two versions:
Holiday Survival Party Mix Version 1 (super simple)
6 cups shredded wheat squares
1 small bottle mango-orange juice (I used Naked juice)
2-3 tablespoons Mrs. Dash Hot and Spicy
In a non-reactive saucepan over high heat, combine the juice and spices. Bring to a boil and then lower heat to a bubbling simmer. Continue simmering, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is reduced by about half (approx. 30 minutes). It should be a thick syrup at this point.
Preheat the oven to 250 F. In a large mixing bowl, combine the shredded wheat and the syrup. Toss to coat evenly. Spread the mix on a large cookie sheet and bake for about 90 minutes. With a spatula, turn and rearrange the mix every 30 minutes. The mix should be thoroughly dry and some squares will be golden to dark brown.
Cool completely and store in zipper bags.
Holiday Survival Party Mix Version 2
5 cups shredded wheat squares
1 small bottle mango-orange juice (I used Naked Juice)
1 tablespoon Mrs Dash Lemon and Pepper
1 tablespoon Mrs. Dash Hot and Spicy
1/2 tablespoon Mrs. Dash Tomato, Basil and Garlic
1 cup walnuts
1 cup dried cherries
Follow the directions above for making the syrup. Add the nuts to the cereal in a large mixing bowl and then add the syrup to this mix. Toss to coat evenly.
Bake on a cookie sheet in a 250 F oven for about 90 minutes until pieces are golden and some are a rich brown. Remove from oven, add in the dried cherries and allow to cool before bagging for storage. Enjoy!
And while you're munching with impunity, here are some suggested book titles to make your holidays a little lighter and brighter: