Healthy holiday treats to have at your table

December parties don't have to mean January restrictions. Choose the right foods to serve at parties and get-togethers and skip the weight gain this season

By Signe Langford

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1. Nuts in shells

Bowls of raw nuts in their shells are not only delicious and healthy, they contribute to pretty, natural holiday decor. Set out big bowls filled with almonds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts and pecans and include a couple of nutcrackers and picks, a bowl for discarded shells and a stack of cocktail napkins. Bonus: Cracking nuts gives shy guests something to do with their hands. Complement these big bowls or platters with small bowls of shelled raw, unsalted mixed nuts or trail mix. Add a handful of dark chocolate pearls or chips, dried cranberries and shaved, toasted coconut and no one will miss the salt and oil. Or, go all out and make our delicious savoury spiced almonds.

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