Holiday Entertaining—The FoodTrients Way

I love to open up my home and invite friends and family over for celebrations. And the holiday season provides irresistible opportunities to throw great parties that people will remember. My first priority is always my guests, and I ensure that they are well fed, entertained, and delighted.

Good food is vital to any party. Hungry guests are not happy guests, so I have a wide variety of food available for the duration of the party. During the holidays, a time when people tend to overeat and overindulge, I offer some healthful party fare in addition to seasonal favorites. Here’s where my FoodTrients recipes can shine! These recipes in my cookbook, FoodTrients: Age-Defying Recipes for a Sustainable Life, and on my website feature essential compounds I call FoodTrients, powerful nutrients that promote health, wellness, and longevity.

I’m a huge fan of appetizers. The varieties are endless. In my cookbook, I offer a simple recipe featuring a nutrient-dense ingredient, quinoa, Quinoa Tabbouleh on Pita. Give your appetizer trays a FoodTrients boost by adding nuts, mushrooms, cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, radish), and edamame (soy beans).

I can’t remember a party where I didn’t serve a full meal. During the busy holiday season, I prefer to lay out a grand buffet with dishes that echo my childhood meals. I plan the buffet carefully so that it’s always colorful and varied: a good way to ensure your guests are getting a balance of essential vitamins and minerals. I keep things colorful with lots of vegetables and fruits. I also like to include vegetarian proteins like tofu or beans for my friends with restricted diets so they aren’t stuck with only salad or side dishes.

My health-protecting Spinach and Grapefruit Salad served with my Tangy Ginger Dressing, provides amazing antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. You can use the same dressing with my Green-Tea Noodles with Edamame. My Seafood with Wild Rice, Veal Meatballs with Parsley and Mushroom Gravy, and Tofu and Vegetable Stir-Fry all lend themselves nicely to a holiday buffet.

You can make your own party favorites more healthful by adding foods, herbs, and spices that increase energy and vitality, help prevent the diseases of aging, and taste great. For example, add curry powder to a rice dish, garlic and ginger to a stir-fry, citrus to a sauce for poultry. Or consult my “Guide to Age-Defying FoodTrients” at the back of my cookbook, which identifies all 26 powerful FoodTrients featured in my recipes, as well as their food sources and their benefits to your health and well-being.

I personally don’t drink alcohol, so I like to have some nonalcoholic party beverages available to my guests. My Mint Agave Tonic is inspired by the Cuban mojito, my Soursop Lassi is a healthful alternative to frothy, tropical blended drinks, and my recipe for Chia Frescas takes this fruit drink to a new, fun level.

And what’s a holiday meal without dessert? In my cookbook and on my website, I put healthful spins on popular desserts such as Pear and Apple Tart and tapioca (Mango Tapioca) and introduce stunning and delicious recipes, such as my Almond-Blueberry Gelatin Parfaits, which will electrify your dessert table. My Cinnamon Coffee and my Gingerroot Black Tea complement any dessert.

Now you’re entertaining the FoodTrients way!

About Grace O

Grace O has been cooking and baking professionally and recreationally all of her adult life. As a child in Southeast Asia, she learned the culinary arts by her mother’s side in her family’s cooking school. She became so well versed in hospitality and the culinary arts, she eventually took over the cooking school and opened three restaurants. She is widely credited with popularizing shrimp on sugar-cane skewers and being one of the first culinarians to make tapas a global trend. She has cooked for ruling families and royalty. Grace O’s move to America precipitated a career in healthcare, inspired by her father, who was a physician. Twenty years and much hard work later, she operates skilled nursing facilities in California. Grace O strives to create flavorful food using the finest ingredients that ultimately lead to good health. Her recipes, although low in saturated fat, salt, and sugar, are high in flavor. Grace employs spices from all over the world to enliven her dishes, creating food that is different and delicious. She believes that food can be just as effective at fighting aging as the most expensive skin creams. And since she’s over 50 herself, she’s living proof of that.
What Do FoodTrients Do?
Ai Anti- inflammatories

Reduce inflammatory process in cells, tissues, and blood vessels, helping to slow aging and reduce risk of long-term disease.

Ao Anti- oxidant

Prevents and repairs oxidative damage to cells caused by free radicals.

IB Immunity Boosters

Support the body’s resistance to infection and strengthen immune vigilance and response.

MB Mind

Improves mood, memory, and focus.

F Disease Prevention

Reduces risk factors for common degenerative and age-related diseases.