It's just not holiday time without a cellophaned tower of chocolates, cheeses, biscuits, cookies and salty, salty nuts. And why not? If ever there were a time to treat yourself.
Gift-givers going the gourmet-extravaganza route are a populous lot. It's hard to beat delicious, beautiful food -- unless, of course, it's delicious, beautiful food that doesn't deliver enough fat, cholesterol, sodium and calories to last the rest of the year.
Homemade, store-bought or ordered online, the angle on gift baskets tends to be taste over health -- not a ridiculous way to go for a once-a-year thing (if a bit short-sighted). But why not give both? Healthier foods can be equally gourmet, possibly more impressive-looking and just as well-received.
No, seriously. You can put together a healthier gift that doesn't scream "I'm healthy!" with just a few thoughtful tweaks on the old standbys. And you don't even have to leave out the cookies.
That's right -- or the brownies, muffins or scones. Because with baked goods, as with so many foods, fresh vs. packaged makes much more of a difference than some people think.