Friday, February 6, 2009
Fruit For Dessert
Fruit for Dessert
You're struggling to break the habit of having something sweet at the end of each meal, and you need to get more fresh produce into your diet. What are you going to do? Bingo — one solution fixes both problems! Replacing high-calorie, low-nutrient dessert foods like cookies, cakes, and full-fat ice cream with fruit is an easy way to kill two birds with one stone.
Here are some ideas for delicious, light, nutritious fruit desserts:
Make a fruit salad. Slice up and toss two or three of your favorite fruits in a bowl for a simple, colorful, fresh-tasting dessert. Frozen and canned fruits can help out in a pinch, too — make sure, though, to choose fruits canned in their own juice rather than heavy syrup, which is full of added sugar.
Bake an apple. If you think the only place to find baked fruit is in pies, think again! Apples, for instance, bake up beautifully on their own — just scoop out the core from the top of the apple (without cutting all the way through), fill the well with nuts, raisins, and a touch of maple syrup or brown sugar, and bake for about 30 minutes. There are lots of variations on this simple recipe, so check out your cookbooks or the Internet for more ideas.
Bake another fruit. Apples certainly aren't the only fruits that take well to baking. Pears can be baked much in the same way as apples, and mixtures of dried and fresh fruits can be baked into delicious compotes. Also, fruits you might not expect, like bananas and grapefruits, can be baked, too, for a tasty dessert or breakfast. While many of these recipes call for a little sugar to be added to the fruit to bring out its taste when baking, the results are still much higher in nutrients and lower in calories than typical baked desserts.
Bring on the berries. Berries are so full of flavor and good-for-you nutrients that it would be a shame not to incorporate them into your meals and snacks. When it comes to dessert, top them with some fat-free whipped topping and some low-fat granola for a yummy sundae. Or drizzle some melted dark chocolate on top. Mmm...how delicious!