Put the Food Away
It’s the BIG DAY! The family is all present, the dinner food is about to be plated. What do we do with all the appetizers? You know, the cheese plate with crackers, the veggies and dip and the nachos and salsa that some how made it out of the pantry. Put them away. Clean up the appetizers before the meal gets plated to cut down on filling up too much on the snack foods and then over filling on dinner. About an hour to 45 minutes before the meal begins start clearing up the appetizers. If you are at a friend or family members home just start “helping” to prepare room for the meal and I use my children (because it’s true) as an excuse, stating that they are filling up on the appies and won’t have room for their delicious meal.
Dinner just ended, everyone is singing the praises of the AMAZING meal, what happens next? Do you get out dessert? Do you sit and talk? How about putting dinner away? If the food goes away, there is less of a chance to be sitting around picking at the turkey, dinner buns and trimmings. To cut down on the leftovers you can be prepared with small take away containers for each of the guests OR have your food prep containers ready to start putting away January meals! If you are not in your home just simply stand up and start bringing food to the kitchen. It’s always appreciated when there is help with clean up after cooking and preparing a meal all day. This little break between the meal and dessert also allows digestion to begin and for the brain to get the signal from the stomach that it may be too full for dessert right away.
Dessert is being served. There are pies, cookies, cakes, tarts, and well, you get the picture. Should we place all the desserts out on the table for everyone (but mostly ourselves) to pick at? How about having each guest come into the kitchen and serve themselves and then individually taking their plate to the table to eat? This seems simple, but I find that when the dessert is removed from view there is less need to continue to serve ourselves one more bite.
For some I think these ideas are simply the way things are done. But I know that in my family the food just piles up and it’s a continuous feeding from appetizers till second dessert. (That is totally a real thing in my family!!) Putting food away and separating the courses of the meal with small breaks helps with digestion but it also helps keep you aware of the food choices that you are making and how full you are getting. I personally LOVE this for the clean up that comes along with it! It can be a daunting task being faced with all the dishes and food clean up at the end of the night! For the record, if you come to my house for dinner, I would rather have the help with clean up than a bottle of wine upon arrival...just throwing that out there!!
Bottom line, put the food away, and like it’s said, out of sight, out of mind. Thanks for joining me again today for the Holiday Health Challenge! It’s Christmas Eve tomorrow!! Are you ready? Let me know if your family puts away the food or if it’s available all night for snacking! Have a great day!!