Healthy Holiday Indulgences

Healthy Holiday Indulgences

by Kim Cooke, Acqualina’s Spa Operations Manager

Ahhh November, the beginning of the holiday season.  Thanksgiving truly is my favorite holiday – a day full of cooking and entertaining combines my two all-time favorite things.

Every year, I like to try a healthy alternative to a traditional recipe. This year, I’ve created a healthy take on the traditional green bean casserole. Once your guests try this, I’m sure they will ask for the recipe, therefore, I’ve included it below. Bon Appetit!


  • 1 1/2 pounds slender green beans, trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts (about 1 1/2 ounces)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 18 large fresh basil leaves, chopped


Cook beans in large pot of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain. Place beans in bowl of ice water to cool. Drain well. Pat dry with paper towels. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Wrap in paper towels and refrigerate.)

Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium-low heat. Add pine nuts and sauté until light brown, about 6 minutes. Add garlic; stir 1 minute. Add green beans to skillet; sauté until heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in basil. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl and serve.