Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

'Tis Not the Season.For Diets Side Dishes Make Holiday Meals Extra-Special

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

'Tis Not the Season.For Diets Side Dishes Make Holiday Meals Extra-Special

Article excerpt

If you guys and gals haven't lost the weight you had intended to yet, forget it. No dieting after mid-November. Adrian's rule number two.

Too many holidays coming up. Too many big meals. Too many parties. Any effort at belt-tightening from now until the end of the year is an exercise in brutality.

What is Adrian's rule number one, you ask? Here:

All dieting is tasteless, so why bother.

While we always have shunned dieting (and we have the waistline to prove it), we have tried to practice a sensible approach to eating. Most of the time. Poker nights and bridge nights are out. There is something about a deck of cards in the room that makes us forget all of our good intentions.

But on routine days and nights, we work toward what our limited knowledge considers good nutrition. That means lots of fruits, vegetables, fish, chicken and fiber. And only a modicum of red meat, desserts, heavy sauces and fatty things. And only one drink before dinner.

Come mid-November, however, all good intentions are added to the compost heap. We feel that the cool nights justify a little more fortification to protect the bones. So it's a bad excuse. We figure a bad excuse is better than no excuse at all.

We're sure you know where we are leading you. You're right. Recipes for fattening, sinful food. Holiday food.

If you want to serve some of it with your Thanksgiving meal, it's your kitchen. It's perfectly acceptable, however, to try these on any other night or afternoon for the next 45 days.

Which brings us to Adrian's corollary to rule number two: From Nov. 15 till Jan. 1, calories not only don't count, you don't count calories. Pretend they are not there. And certainly don't step on a scale again until Jan. 2.

Thanksgiving starts with a turkey, of course. Anyone can cook a turkey. Simply follow the directions on the wrapping the bird comes in, if you have no better recipe. Just remember to take that plastic bag full of parts out of the rear cavity before you start cooking.

A real Thanksgiving dinner, one such as the Native Americans might have shared with the founding mothers, has to have all sorts of side dishes. Up to 14, we figure. And at least three or four desserts covered with lots of whipped cream.

You're on your own with the bird, but we'll offer a couple of tasties to serve with it or after it. Ready?

***** TWICE-BAKED SWEET POTATOES

4 large sweet potatoes

2 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg

2 tablespoons bourbon

1/4 cup chopped pecans

Bake the potatoes, unwrapped, for one hour in a preheated 400-degree oven. Let cool for a few minutes. Cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out the pulp, leaving about 1/4 inch along the peel. Put the pulp in a food processor along with all of the remaining ingredients except the pecans. …

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