It’s already been a year since Michelle Obama and the USDA revealed the MyPlate logo, which has helped thousands of Americans make healthier choices when grocery shopping, preparing meals, and eating. Thankfully, we went from the confusing, complicated MyPyramid (where’s the nutrition?) to the streamlined, easy-to-understand MyPlate. And just in time, too – statistics from the Centers for Disease Control show that more than 1/3 of American adults are obese, as well as 17% of all U.S. children and teens. It’s time we make healthier choices, for ourselves and future generations!
So as MyPlate celebrates its first birthday, I thought I’d share some timely tips for keeping your party plates fresh, colorful, and healthy!
- See things in a new light! Even simple ingredients can be re-imagined in exciting new ways. Take my recent example: I had delicious roasted radishes in a restaurant last week. I would never have thought of cooking radishes! But it’s totally simple – tossed with oil and sprinkled liberally with sea salt, these are a mellow, sweet side dish. They’d be perfect for a backyard barbecue!
- Make things festive with garnish. It’s deceptively simple, but the addition of spices, fresh herbs, or nuts can boost a dish’s allure. Put pear slices in your salads, sprinkle sliced almonds on sauteed veggies, and dust your grilled meats with fresh herbs. Who needs restaurants when you can play chef in your own kitchen?!
- Try something new. Turn to other cultures and traditions for inspiration! Italians regularly serve up plates of cheese with fresh pears and other fruits. Simple, fresh, healthy.