Here are a couple holiday favorites with adaptations I have used to ease my calorie conscience at Thanksgiving.
Candied Sweet Potatoes and Pineapple
* 1 cup brown sugar (for a cup of brown sugar, you can substitute 1 cup Splenda thoroughly mixed with one-fourth cup sugar-free maple syrup,
* One-fourth cup butter/margarine,
* 40-ounce can sweet potatoes (you may want to cut these in half if they are big),
* One-fourth cup water or pineapple juice, and
* One-half cup pecan halves or one-half package mini-marshmallows -- colored or white.
How to do it
In heavy skillet, mix together brown sugar or substitute above; butter and water/juice and heat until mixture bubbles. Add sweet potatoes until the sweet potatoes and pineapple are "candied," or glazed. This process includes turning the potatoes gently once in a while, maybe two or three times. With a little care, you can avoid mutilating them too much.
Transfer to baking dish, sprinkle top with pecans or marshmallows and broil lightly, watching carefully.
Note: Generally speaking, the above amount is enough for six. Twice the amount will probably serve more than twice the number of people, if there are proportionately more food choices.
Here is a lighter version of an autumn favorite that I have used with success:
* Two cups canned pumpkin (not pie mix),
* Two eggs or one-half cup egg substitute or four egg whites, slightly beaten,
* Three tablespoons brown sugar,
* 12 packets Equal,
* One teaspoon ground cinnamon,
* One-half teaspoon ginger,
* 12-ounces of evaporate skim milk, and
* One 10-ounce pie crust.
How to do it
Preheat oven to 425-degrees. (Check temperature in curriculum poss. 20-minutes, then reduce to 350-degrees).
Combine ingredients and pour into pie shell. (If a 10-inch shell is not available, the remainder makes a nice small baked pudding. Bake in a pie pan of water, which has been placed on an oven rack).
Just a note: The Equal (aspartame) usually loses its sweetness when it is heated for more than 15 minutes, but this recipe preserves its sweetness by combining it with brown sugar. The spices and naturally sweet taste of pumpkin also help keep the pie sweet.
Evaporated skim milk is an excellent substitute for regular evaporated milk and can also be substituted for cream in many recipes.
Note: Recipes adapted from "Peggy's Kitchen," and the Purdue curriculum, "Dining With Diabetes."
You can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 812-829-5020 in Owen County or 448-9041 in Clay County for more information, or for comments regarding this week's column topic. There is an Indiana Extension Homemaker club near you.
Call the Extension office for more information.