1. COOK WITH QUINOA
Preheat oven to 180 degrees. In a bowl mix 12 oz cranberries, ¼ cup maple syrup and water, and zest of 1 orange. Pour into baking dish to form a single layer; bake 20 minutes. Add cooked berry mixture, ¼ cup olive oil and vinegar, ½ cup crumbled goat cheese, walnuts, and 2 stalks chopped celery to 1 cup of cooked quinoa, then toss.
2. WHIP UP A SPREAD
Combine ½ cup softened low-fat cream cheese, ½ cup fat-free feta crumbles, 1 cup diced dried cranberries, and 1 cup chopped green onion. Mix all ingredients and refrigerate.
3. MAKE A SAUCE
Combine 12 oz cranberries, ½ cup each of dark brown sugar and water, 6 oz mandarin oranges, ¼ tsp ground cardamom, and 2 (½-by-3 inch) strips orange rind in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat. Simmer until cranberries pop and mixture thickens. Remove orange rind, chill 2 hours. Can make 2 days ahead.
4. PACK A TRAIL MIX
Mix together 1 cup dried cranberries, ¼ cup pumpkin seeds, ¼ cup raw almonds, ¼ cup unsweetened dark chocolate, and 4 tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut. Perfect for on-the-go snacking.
5. BAKE A PROTEIN BAR
Whisk ½ cup each of oats, whole wheat flour, and cocoa powder, ¾ cup dried cranberries, two scoops whey, 1 tbsp cornstarch, and 1½ tsp baking powder. In separate bowl, whisk ¼ cup each of honey and applesauce, and 2 egg whites. Stir this into flour mixture and add 10 tsp dark chocolate chips. Spread batter into 8-inch square baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes at 300°. Let cool. Slice into bars.
BY JIM WHITE, R.D.