Entertaining need not break the calorie bank. Having a few friends over for dinner can be fun and doesn’t mean you need to spend hours in the gym the next day working off everything you ate. There are many different options that will impress even the most fussy diner. If you choose wisely you can easy integrate it into your weekly food plan and still loose weight if you want to.
- Start with a good plan, choose a meat or protein that is low in saturated fat. Seafood and fish are always a winner especially fresh from your local fishmonger.
- Make sure you include a good amount of green vegetables. A few different kinds of salad or lightly stir fried greens will complement your protein.
- Skip the pre dinner cheese and fattening dips. If you have a great meal planned you don’t need to fill people up on crappy snacks beforehand. Some cut up vegetables with fresh salsa if you must.
- Dessert need not be heavy or calorie laden. Check out my chocolate cupcakes or choc chip cookies or even a nice fresh fruit salad with a dollop of fresh coconut yoghurt. If you do option the dessert, make sure only slice it thinly and eat it slowly and savour every mouthful.
Here is the menu for my latest dinner party. It was a birthday celebration for one of our clients Judy who was celebrating a special birthday.
- Starters- Fresh tiger prawns and Sydney Rock Oysters served with fresh lemon and cracked pepper.
- Apple poached Salmon with papaya and fennel salad and beetroot salad.
- Dessert- provided by one of the guests.
1 x Salmon fillet for each person
1L Apple juice for poaching
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. Apple Juice Concentrate
Handful fresh mint and parsley
1 tbsp. Fresh lemon or lime juice
Rind of 1 lemon or lime (I prefer lime)
Pinch rock salt
In a frypan, slowly heat the apple juice to just before it boils, then add the salmon skin side down. Poach the fillet for about 8 minutes until it feels firm to touch (just like the pad of your thumb on the palm of your hand). Turn the fillet over then poach for 2-3 minutes and then remove from juice and place on a plate to rest.
Place the fillet on a serving plate and top with the dressing. Add a little cracked pepper if you wish.
Papaya and Fennel Salad
1/2 red papaya
1 cup walnuts
red wine vinegar
Combine all ingredients. Better if done ahead of time so the dressing soaks into the fennel.
1 x beetroot for each person
fresh leaves from the beetroot you just bought
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
Peel and cut up beetroot and pre boil until soft (will cut down baking time, boil until you can easily insert a skewer into beetroot). Put in a baking dish and drizzle a little olive oil onto it and sprinkle of rock salt and pepper. Bake in a pre warmed oven at 180 degrees for approximately 45 minutes until the skin caramelizes. While beetroot is boiling finely shred beetroot leaves and place in a bowl. Add the lemon juice and olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and macerate with your hand until it feels soft. Set aside, best done well in advance so leaves soak up the dressing. Place in a serving dish and top with pumpkin seeds and surround the salad with the baked beetroot.
Make sure you prepare the meal ahead of time, there is nothing worse than being stuck in the kitchen while everyone is enjoying themselves in the loungeroom! Enjoy a glass of wine or a beer if you like, life is always best enjoyed in moderation!
Happy Birthday Judy!