My father was a passionate cook, always clipping recipes out of The New York Times. At Christmas he'd buy little wooden boxes of salt cod from Wulf's Fish Market in Brookline, near Boston, and soak the cod for two days, changing the water twice a day. He'd poach it in milk with a bay leaf and onion, then blend it with potato and garlic to make the brandade. He'd buy two or three jars of the best caviar he could afford. And then he'd steam Red Bliss potatoes, leaving them al dente so when he sliced them, each piece became a sort of crouton that he'd top with the brandade, some sweet butter, and the caviar. It really is perfect food.
Chocolate chip cookies may just be the most beloved cookie in the country, not to mention the undoing of many healthy eaters. This chocolate-chip-cookie rehab uses date puree to give moisture to the cookies without any added fat. Made from cooked dates and water, date puree can be substituted one-for-one in place of oil or butter fat in most dessert recipes. Unsweetened cocoa powder, egg whites, whole-wheat flour and just a half-cup of mini chocolate chips come together to create a soft, chewy and low-fat chocolate chip cookie with a nicely crisped outer edge. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to two days.
Our December issue features Oprah's Favorite Things—as well as your chance to win them all! You'll also find our easy holiday declutter plan, Dr. Oz's guide to sleeping better (starting tonight) and the ultimate holiday menu.