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How to cook for a health-conscious crowd

Andrea Correale

Andrea Correale Photo Credit: Andrea Correale

Celebrity caterer Andrea Correale has made it her mission to help her clients throw great parties, but with a healthy twist. Clients of her business Elegant Affairs have included Jimmy Fallon, Mariah Carey, P. Diddy, Kevin Spacey, Donald Trump and Russell Simmons, among others. She shared with amNewYork her top tips on how to cook for a health-conscious crowd:

1. The gluten-free and carb diets are trendy at the present time. If you’re throwing a party for friends and family, I suggest setting up a grazing table of carb and gluten-free edibles in lieu of the standard fatty cheese and crackers, breads, chips and dips. You can decorate it with an array of health items for guests to enjoy.

I would suggest filling it with options like frozen grapes, celery with peanut butter, hard-boiled eggs filled with hummus and avocado, truffled popcorn and other bite-size treats.

2. Another idea is to pair up fruits with vegetables for hors d’oeuvres and appetizers. A great pairing is watermelon and cucumber stacks.

You can pair them to be served as an appetizer, or serve it crudités style with a citrus honey vinaigrette. You can also try putting together mango, carrot and cucumber sticks dusted with herbs and spices.

3. If you’re going the no-carb route, a great way to present your food to guests is by filling a rocks glass with a healthy salad, like a corn and black bean salad, and top it with a low-calorie protein. You can use salmon or chicken to place on top of the salad. These little delights are a huge hit because they are visually pleasing to the eye and delicious to the palate.

4. If you decide to serve cocktails, I would suggest creating a juice bar with all fresh in-season juices. Devise a bar menu with ingredients such as fresh watermelon juice, cucumber juice, papaya juice and blood orange juice.

-- Keep the ingredients pure and natural.
-- Stay away from simple syrups (sugar mixed with water) and replace with agave syrup or honey powder.


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