Happy new year everyone! The beginning of January is always synonymous of a new way of eating for many people. You’ve just come out of a month-long eating extravaganza and with a new year, you’ve likely set some goals for yourself. That often means re-vamping some of your eating habits.

This doesn’t have to be a pain, and it also doesn’t mean that you can only eat “rabbit food”; it simply means better portion control and limiting the amount of treats and snacks you get to enjoy. It also means trying to stick to the main food groups, as suggested by Canada’s Food Guide.

Some people have the misconception that healthy eating means boring, bland food; but spices don’t count as calories and you can still add tastiness to your meals without adding more fat and calories.

Take for instance our recipe for coconut and ginger pancakes with sesame mango pulled chicken – it’s not hard to make, has flavour and is still a healthy, balanced meal.

Coconut and ginger pancakes with sesame mango pulled chicken

1 cup rice flour
1¾ cups coconut milk
1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp. grated palm sugar
1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
Salt and pepper to taste
Cilantro leaves
Vegetable oil

Sift rice flour into bowl, make a well in the centre and stir in egg, coconut milk, palm sugar and fresh ginger. Whisk into a smooth batter. Let this rest at room temperature.

In hot crêpe pan, add oil and cilantro leaves (be careful, it will sputter and spat) and pour in pancake batter. Once golden on the edges, flip over until golden on that side as well.

Mango sesame chicken

2 cooked chicken breasts
1/3 diced mango
1/4 diced red pepper
1/4 julienne of cucumber
1 tbsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. chopped ginger
3 tbsp. chili sauce
1 tbsp. rice vinegar
1/2 tbsp. sesame oil
3 leaves chopped mint

Pull chicken into shreds; combine all other ingredients into bowl and marinate. Once ready, roll into pancake with the cilantro leaves facing out. Place on platter and serve.

And of course, on nights when you’re too busy to whip something together, don’t automatically go for the fast food option. Stop by our Food Shoppe in downtown Elmira and pick up a homemade, healthy meal (including preservative-free and gluten-free options). Best of luck with all of your resolutions this year!

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