Thanksgiving: Veg-Style

I was never a huge fan of turkey at Thanksgiving. For me it was always about the sweet potato and the stuffing.  My theory is that even for turkey-lovers there is no way that turkey could be the best part of the meal. Why then would we have so many other side dishes? Feel free to disagree, I’m just very passionate about my veggies 😛

This year I had the honor of being assigned head chef for 2 out of the 3 Thanksgiving meals I took part. Woohooo!!! Dream come true! Time to show the world how yummy and satisfying a 100% vegetarian/vegan feast can be.

Below is a compilation of recipes for all the amazing vegan Thanksgiving dishes I prepared and feasted upon over the past few days. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get photos of everything I made. In these cases I borrowed a photo from the blog that I used as inspiration for the below recipes. Sometimes I also just used Google images. All photos are almost 100% accurate representations of what the dish looked like though.

APPETIZERS

CROSTINI WITH BLACK-EYES PEA PUREE

Black-eyed peas

Ingredients

1 can black-eyed peas

4 garlic cloves, roasted

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbsp. cayenne pepper

2 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 tsp. chopped fresh chives

2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice

Salt

Black Pepper

Toasted baguette for crostini

Directions:

Drain black-eyed peas and place in a bowl. Use a fork to mash the black-eyed peas. Add olive oil, chopped roasted garlic, cayenne pepper, parsley, chives, and lemon juice into the bowl and combine.

Transfer contents of bowl into a food processor. Blend until a smooth past is created.

Toast slices of fresh banquette to make the crostini. Top crostini with bean paste and a few extra slices of the chives.

(Adapted from Williams Sonoma)

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DR. COW’S AGED CASHEW CHEESE WITH SOUR CHERRY JAM + ROASTED WALNUTS

Dr. Cow

Ingredients

Dr. Cow’s Aged Cashew Cheese

Stonewall Kitchen’s Sour Cherry Jam

Roasted Walnuts

Crackers of your Choice

Directions

Top block of Dr. Cow’s Cheese with sour cherry jam and roasted walnuts. Spread onto your favorite crackers and enjoy!

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First Course

 

ROASTED RED PEPPER SOUP

Red Pepper Soup

Since this recipe was unmodified I’m going to send you directly to the wonderful blog that I borrowed this recipe from, Lunch Box Bunch. It’s a warm, rich, and slightly spicy soup and will warm you inside and out. Perfect for the winter months. Click here to see the recipe.

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Main Course

 

APPLE STUFFED ACORN SQUASH

Stuffed Butternet Squash

Ingredients

1 Acorn squash

1 Red delicious apple (diced)

2 Tbsp. dried cranberries

1 Tbsp. dried cherries

2 Tbsp. crushed walnuts (crushed)

2 Tbsp. brown sugar

1 Tbsp Earth Balance margarine (softened)

 

Directions

Heat oven to 350.

Cut your Acorn Squash in half length-wise and remove seeds and fibers. Cut 2-3 little slits in the inside of the hallowed out Squash. Bake the Squash for 30 minutes.

In a bowl, mix apples, cranberries, cherries, walnuts, brown sugar and Earth balance.

After 30 minutes, remove the Squash and fill with the apple mixture. Once filled, put them back in the oven for another 30-40 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when it is a nice golden brown.

(Adapted from Meet the Shannons)

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MAPLE SPICED QUINOA WITH CRANBERRIES, APRICOTS AND ALMONDS 

Quinoa

This recipe was unmodified so I’m going to send you directly to the blog I got the recipe from, OhSheGlows.com. The quinoa was wonderful; slightly sweet and cinnamony which was perfectly complimented by the dried fruit. I actually found the leftovers where great for breakfast too. Click here for the original recipe.

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EGGPLANT AND SWEET POTATO STUFFING

Stuffing

This recipe was also unmodified so I will send you directly to the website, MindBodyGreen.com. Click here for the original recipe.

Sides

BRUSSELS SPROUTS WITH APPLES AND BLACK WALNUTS

Brussel Sprouts

Ingredients:

For the sweet hot mustard:

1/4 cup (60 g) Dijon mustard

1 1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar

2 Tbs. firmly packed light brown sugar

1/2 tsp. hot sauce

For the salad:

2 Tbs. Blackberry Farm smoked onion jam

1 Tbs. sherry vinegar

5 Tbs. (80 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

1 lb. (500 g) brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered

1 cup (125 g) black walnuts, toasted

1 1/2 red apples, such as Fuji or Gala, cored and thinly sliced

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste 

Directions:

To make the sweet hot mustard, in a bowl, whisk together the mustard, vinegar, brown sugar and hot sauce.

To make the salad dressing, in a large bowl, whisk the smoked onion jam, vinegar, 2 Tbs. of the sweet hot mustard, 3 Tbs. of the olive oil, salt and pepper.

For the salad, in a large pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 2 Tbs. of olive oil. Add the brussels sprouts, salt and pepper. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sprouts are just tender and lightly browned, about 11 minutes. Transfer the brussels sprouts to the bowl and top with the vinaigrette, walnuts and apples. Toss until the salad is well coated with the dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste.

(Adapted from Williams Sonoma)

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BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND GINGERBREAD PANZANELLA

Gingerbread Salad

Ingredients:

For the gingerbread:

8 tbsp. Earth Balance or alternative non-dairy butter

1 1/2 cups (375 ml) boiling water

1 cup (345 g) molasses

1 tsp. baking soda

2 1/2 cups (390 g) whole wheat baking flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. ground ginger

1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Pinch of ground cloves

1 cup (220 g) firmly packed dark brown sugar

1 egg substitute (here is a link to a great website that lists several egg alternatives)

3 cups (90 g) arugula

For the dressing

3 Tbs. Blackberry Farm pumpkin and pear butter

3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

For the salad

Arugula

Diced butternut squash, roasted

Dried cranberries

Pecans

Directions:

To make the gingerbread

Preheat an oven to 325°F (165°C). Brush a half-sheet pan with Earth Balance. In a medium bowl whisk together the boiling water, molasses and baking soda. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon and cloves. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the 8 Tbsp. of Earth Balance on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add the brown sugar and beat until fluffy, about 2 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg substitute and beat until combined.
Reduce the speed to low and add half the molasses mixture, then half the flour mixture. Slowly add the rest of the molasses and flour mixtures until combined, beating after each addition. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until the gingerbread springs back when touched, about 20 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely. The gingerbread can be made up to 2 days in advance.

To make the salad

Cut enough gingerbread into 1-inch (2.5-cm) cubes to measure 2 cups (125 g).

Increase the oven temperature to 400°F (200°C). Place the gingerbread cubes on a baking sheet. Toast, turning once, until slightly crisped, 7 to 8 minutes. Let cool.

Slice the butternut squash into cubes, sprinkle with olive oil and roast in the oven at 375 until cubes are tender, about 30 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the gingerbread croutons, arugula, butternut squash, dried cranberries, and pecans. In a small bowl, whisk the pumpkin and pear butter and the 3 Tbs. olive oil. Add to the salad and toss with your hands to ensure the croutons and arugula are well coated, adding more olive oil, salt and pepper as needed.

(Adapted from Williams Sonoma)

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RAINBOW CHARD WITH PUMPKIN SEEDS

rainbow chard

Ingredients

2 12-oz. bunches rainbow chard

3 Tbs. olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp.)

4 tsp. lemon juice

2 Tbs. toasted pumpkin seeds

 

Directions

1. Tear chard leaves away from stems, keeping stems and leaves separate. Cut leaves into wide strips. Slice stems 1/4-inch thick on diagonal. (You should have 16 cups leaves and 1 cup stems.)

2. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Add chard stems and garlic. Sauté 2 to 3 minutes, or until stems soften, adding 1 to 2 Tbs. water, if necessary. Increase heat to medium-high, and add chard leaves. Sauté 3 to 4 minutes, or until wilted. Toss with lemon juice and pumpkin seeds.

(Recipe from Vegetarian Times)

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CRANBERRY SAUCE

 Cranberry Sauce

Ingredients

1 ¾ cup fresh cranberries

½ cup maple syrup

¼ tsp. sea salt

1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp. orange juice

Directions

In a pot on medium heat, combine the cranberries, maple syrup, sea salt and orange juice. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Once the sauce has reached the desired consistency add the balsamic vinegar.

(Adapted from Oh She Glows)

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GREEN BEANS WITH ALMONDS

Green Beans

Ingredients

1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed

3 Earth Balance

1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted

1 teaspoon lemon juice

Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

Cook green beans in a small amount of salted water until tender but still firm. Drain and rinse with cool water if you’re not ready to begin next step immediately.

Heat a large skillet over a medium flame and add the almonds, stirring constantly for about 30 seconds, so they become very lightly toasted.

Add the Earth Balance and the lemon juice to the pan and mix with almonds. Add the beans and sauté for one to two minutes, or until all of the beans are coated.

(Adapted from Serious Eats)

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SPINACH SALAD WITH ROASTED VEGGIES

Spinach salad

 

Ingredients

Spinach

Kale

Broccoli

Beets

Brussels Sprouts

Shelled and lightly salted pistachios

Dried Cranberries

Directions

Chop the broccoli, beets, and Brussels sprouts. Sprinkle them with olive oil and place in the oven at 500 degrees for 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and place on top of a bed of spinach and chopped kale. The warm veggies will begin to lightly cook the spinach and kale.

Throw in some salted pistachios and dried cranberries. Top with a simple vinaigrette.

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SMOKY PUMPKIN GRITS

Grits

Ingredients

2 cups water

1 cup soy milk

½ teaspoon sea salt (or more to taste)

¾ cup quick-cooking (not instant) grits

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

¼ teaspoon Earth Balance

¼ cup nutritional yeast

¾ cup purred pumpkin

Roasted and salted Pepitas

Directions

In a 2-quart saucepan, bring water , soy milk, and salt to a rapid boil.  Slowly whisk in grits and reduce heat to medium or medium-low.  Cover and cook, whisking occasionally, for 5 minutes.  Add paprika, earth balance, nutritional yeast, and pureed pumpkin and cook, whisking frequently, for 2 more minutes or until thick, creamy and heated through.  Check for salt and adjust if necessary.  Serve hot topped with one-fourth of the pepitas and a garnish of fresh sage leaves.

(Adapted from One Green Planet)

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MIXED GREENS AND FARO SALAD

Salad with cinnamon

Ingredients

For the salad:

1 bag mixed Greens

1 sweet potato, roasted

½ pound Brussels spouts, roasted

1 red bell pepper, roasted red bell peppers

1-2 handfuls of dried cranberries

1 handful of Roasted and salted pistachios

1 cup Faro

For the Dressing

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons honey

¾ teaspoon Frontier® ground cumin

½ teaspoon Frontier® cinnamon

Directions

Place faro in a pot with 2 ½ cups salted water. Bring water to a boil. Once boiling heat and let simmer for about 20 minutes until the faro is tender. Drain and set aside.

While faro cooks, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Peel and cube the sweet potato. Cut end off the Brussels sprouts and slice in half. Chop the red bell pepper.

In a bowl, combine the chopped vegetables along with olive oil. Spread out in a single layer on a baking tray. Roast vegetables until lightly browning and tender, 35 to 45 minutes. Remove and let cool slightly.

To assemble salad, toss together cooked faro, roasted vegetables, cranberries, and pistachios.

Combine the ingredients for the dressing in jar with a lid and shake until combined. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss until salad is coated.

(Adapted from Frontier Coop)

Desert

RAW VEGAN PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

Desert

This recipe was unmodified so I’ll direct you to the blog, LauraFriendly.com, where I found this recipe. Click here for the original recipe.

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