Getting our greedy on

On Saturday evening, hubby Bryan and I celebrated our annual Greedy Santa party with a pretty large group of friends. I think at last count there were 19 at the gathering.

I don’t know how many years we’ve been doing it, but the premise is that we get together to eat, drink and be merry — and pick from a large stack of presents with the option to steal someone else’s gift, hence the “greedy” part.

In previous years, Bryan and I have tried to bring something more substantial to the potluck— brisket or pulled pork sandwiches, for instance — so there was more than just snacky stuff. This time, however, friend Millie volunteered to make cheesy turkey sandwiches, leaving me free to delve into other fare.

After some deliberation, I finally decided to make two things: one healthy appetizer option, since there’s been a rash of heart-health issues among our friends; and then something decidedly not-so-health, rum cake. (Isn’t getting through the holiday season all about balance?)

Since we have several friends who are especially partial to blue cheese, including one of the guys with heart issues, I challenged myself to create a low-fat blue cheese dip. I found several such recipes on the Internet and eventually combined ideas from a couple of them. Of course, since the blue cheese itself does contain some fat, it’s not totally fat-free, but it is a healthier version. Alongside the dip I served crudités — celery and carrot sticks, cauliflower florets — and some plain bread sticks that also claimed to be low-fat. (Tomorrow I’ll share the more decadent cake recipe.)

Heart-Healthy Blue Cheese Dip

In a blender or food processor, combine 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese, 4 ounces non-fat cream cheese, 1 cup non-fat plain yogurt, 2 tablespoons chopped onion and 1 garlic clove. Process until smooth.

Pour into a serving container and stir in about 4 ounces crumbled blue cheese (package size varies). Serve with pita chips or fresh veggies. (Could also be used as a salad dressing.)
 

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