Health dishes for Christmas

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- During this gift giving season, perhaps you have someone in your life who's rather "challenging" to actually "gift."

Katie Johnson with Mayo Clinic Health System joined Hello Wisconsin with a couple of easy and fantastic recipes that are great year-round, but could also make for festive treats for the holidays, or as projects to do with the kids over break. Added bonus: Your kitchen will smell great!

Granola is one of the most versatile snacks or toppings. Making your own granola can help to cut down on unnecessary, added sugar and is totally customizable. The oats are loaded with fiber and also include protein, fruit like apples and raisins contain potassium and fiber. Granola can be stored in a cool dry place for use over time and can be a beautiful gift for the holidays. *Demonstrate Cinnamon Granola

Almonds are packed with protein and essential vitamins like Vitamin E, magnesium, potassium, and calcium. Almonds are also plumped with natural monounsaturated fat which is associated with decreased risks of heart disease. This dish can satisfy your sweet tooth and fuel you for a long day of family gatherings. Packaged just right, roasted almonds can also make for a great gift. *Demonstrate Cinnamon Roasted Almonds

Recipe: Granola with raisins, apples and cinnamon
By Mayo Clinic Staff
Dietitian's tip:
Granola is a cereal-like combination of dried fruits, grains and nuts. Though it's a good source of protein and fiber, granola can also be high in fat and calories, especially the store-bought varieties. Watch your portion sizes or create your own granola to limit the amount of fat, calories and sugar in each serving.
Serves 12 - Ingredients
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 cups dry old-fashioned oatmeal
2 cups bran flakes
3/4 cup dried apple pieces
1/2 cup golden raisins

Preheat the oven to 325 F. Lightly coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and bake, stirring occasionally, until golden and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Transfer immediately to a plate to cool. Raise the temperature of the oven to 350 F.
In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, applesauce, vanilla and cinnamon. Set aside.

In a large bowl, add the oatmeal and bran flakes. Stir to mix well. Add the honey mixture and toss with your hands. Don't break the clumps apart.
Spread the cereal mixture evenly onto a baking sheet. Place in the oven and, stirring occasionally, bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool slightly.

In a large bowl, combine the cereal mixture, toasted almonds, apple pieces and raisins. Cool completely. Store in an airtight container.
Nutritional analysis per serving
Serving size :About 1/2 cup
Cholesterol0 mg
Sodium120 mg
Total fat2 g
Total carbohydrate33 g
Saturated fat Trace
Dietary fiber4 g
Trans fat0 g
Added sugars6 g
Monounsaturated fat1 g
Protein3 g

Recipe: Cinnamon-Roasted Almonds
16 servings/ 231 cals each serving
1 egg white
1 teaspoon cold water
4 cups whole almonds
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Add all ingredients to list
1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (120 degrees C). Lightly grease a 10x15 inch jellyroll pan.
2. Lightly beat the egg white; add water, and beat until frothy but not stiff. Add the nuts, and stir until well coated. Mix the sugar, salt, and cinnamon, and sprinkle over the nuts. Toss to coat, and spread evenly on the prepared pan.
3. Bake for 1 hour in the preheated oven, stirring occasionally, until golden. Allow to cool, then store nuts in airtight containers.
Tip: Aluminum foil can be used to keep food moist, cook it evenly, and make clean-up easier.

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