|Wild Rice Dressing with Roasted Chestnuts and Cranberries|
We are taking a brief break from my "Bucket list " menu to bring you our monthly event. We are so glad you have decided to join us once again for our Cooking Light Virtual Supper Club. This is a monthly event where 5 ladies in two neighbouring countries get together to create a delicious meal with a theme in mind. We are now in our second year and continue to share a love for Cooking Light magazine which has an emphasis on healthy eating and living. This is a team effort where we combine what Cooking Light readers like best...good food with great company!!! Every month millions of readers turn to Cooking Light for recipes, advice on nutrition and fitness.
This month our theme was chosen by Helene of La Cuisine de'Helene....
Holiday Dinner Party!!!!
Today is December 1st when I officially start thinking out loud about Christmas, the decorations go up and baking is a weekly occurance. With the holidays coming this is the perfect time of year to pump up our kitchens into high gear! Let's see what the ladies over at the Cooking Light Virtual Supper Club have brought to our Virtual Supper this month. If you would like to join in with a healthy dish from the pages of Cooking Light, from your archives or any another dish that would fit the "light" theme please feel free to join in below.
The editors at Cooking Light share their tips for slimming down classic holiday dishes. Never is this as important as it is during the holiday season when we are faced with an overwhelming variety of tasty dishes. Let's face it eating is a central part of the holidays. Whether you're serving two or 20, lightened up dishes make sure your dinner will be delicious as well as healthy.
Here is my secret to healthy holiday eating. Stop thinking you have to give up your favourite holiday treats, such as those cookies made by a special relative. I don't know about you but as soon as I even think of not eating something, I want to eat more. Instead, plan to enjoy one or two cookies rather than a whole plate even if they are just that good!!! To get the most flavour and pleasure from any food, slow down and savour every bite. Everything in moderation has always been a good philosophy to live by.
Helene of La Cuisine de'Helene brought some delicious Creamy Artichoke Dip. It made such a tasty beginning to the menu Helene. Thanks for choosing this months theme.
Next Sandi of The Whistlestop Cafe wowed us with the perfect holiday dish of Turkey Scallopine with Apricots and Ginger. This dish gave us the canvas to develop our menu that has that WOW factor.
Our newest member Mary Ann of Meet Me in the Kitchen shared a stunning Cauliflower "Caviar" with Frizzled Prosciutto . This can be used as an appetizer but also makes a stunning side dish as well don't you think!!
I brought this Wild Rice Dressing with Roasted Chestnuts and Cranberries from the pages of Cooking Light. I loved the texture the wild rice added to the dish married with the sweetness of the cranberries. The nutty, almost smoky flavour of wild rice pairs beautifully with game birds and other poultry. Although it wasn't originally planned this way this Wild Rice Dressing dotted with highbush cranberries and earthy chestnuts goes perfectly with the rest of my "Bucket List Menu". (I began my "bucket list" challenge with a tasty starter of Crab Cake Sliders with Lemon Remoulade. As the main dish I had Roasted Chicken with Tarragon Gravy which is now accompanied by this delicious stuffing).
And for dessert Jamie of Mom's Cooking Club wowed us with a dessert of Vanilla-Bourbon Pumpkin Tart. There can never be enough pumpkin in my books at a holiday table!!!!!!
On to the recipe.....
**Wild Rice Dressing with Roasted Chestnuts and Cranberries**
2 cups fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 1/2 cups whole roasted bottled chestnuts
1 cup sweetened dried cranberries
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups halved lengthwise and thinly sliced carrot
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
1 1/4 cups thinly sliced celery
1/2 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons minced fresh sage
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 400°.
Combine rice, broth, 2 cups water, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Partially cover, reduce heat, and simmer 40 minutes or until rice is tender, stirring occasionally. (Do not drain.) Place rice in a large bowl; cover.
Arrange chestnuts on a baking sheet. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes. Cool slightly; cut chestnuts into quarters.
Place cranberries in a small bowl; cover with hot water. Let stand 20 minutes or until soft. Drain and add to rice.
Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add carrot, onion, and celery; cook 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in herbs; remove from heat. Add to rice mixture. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, chestnuts, and pepper.
Spoon rice mixture into a 13 x 9-inch glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray. Cover and bake at 400° for 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
Yield: 12 servings (serving size: about 3/4 cup)
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