Saturday, November 22, 2014

Thanksgiving~Plant Based Style

Thanksgiving, the day to eat, be thankful, see family, take a nap, be thankful, eat, be thankful, kiss & hug everyone, BE THANKFUL!

We usually host Thanksgiving, I thoroughly love it!  I love getting up early, making sure the house is in order, making side dishes, desserts, appetizers, getting the punch ready, and cooking the turkey.  I love to cook and bake, plain and simple.

Since going plant based a year ago (time goes by so fast!) my family has learned to deal with me and my "weird" eating habits, I am whole heartily THANKFUL  for that!  They have suffered through my experimentally desserts, soups, meatless Monday's and meatless meats…and they still love me!  So of course they can expect nothing less than some plant based foods on the dinner table this year.  Don't worry, I have a turkey thawing in the fridge for all you meatatarian's (it is a word on the Urban Dictionary Website).

What I wanted to do was give YOU 5 easy recipes, which are plant based, that you can make to take or place on your beautifully laid table on Thanksgiving day.

Appetizer round:

Your mom brings a huge tray of vegetables, because you know, that's all you eat…so what is good to go with these veggies?  Something creamy, but dairy free:  Eggplant dip!(Recipe from Forks Over Knives).

5 large eggplants
5 garlic cloves, crushed
Juice of 1 lemon
1 to 2 tablespoons of tahini
5 green onions, chopped
Salt and Pepper

Heat oven to 400F, roast the whole eggplants on a baking sheet in the oven for 40 to 50 minutes until soft, let cool.  Scoop out the insides of the eggplants and put them into a bowl; discard the peels.  Mash the eggplant, then let stand for around 30 minutes.  Discard any accumulated Juices.  Add the garlic, lemon juice, tahini and green onions to the mashed eggplant, mix well.  Add salt and pepper, cover and refrigerate.

Soup du jour! 

Potatoes!  They go good with every course at your table!  Let's make Potato Leek Soup (Recipe from Vegan Yum Yum).

3 cups leeks, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, peeled and cubed
1 pound potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 cups vegetable broth
1 teaspoon salt
1 bay leaf
1 to 2 teaspoons of fresh pepper

Slice the long, white pale green bulb of the leeks, lengthwise and run under cool water, being careful to remove any dirt or sand.  Heat the oil in a soup pot and add garlic.  Sauté for 1 minute and then add the leeks.  Stir and cook until tender.  Add the potatoes and broth along with the salt and bay leaf.  Boil, covered, until the potatoes are very tender and falling apart.  Blend the soup in a blender or food processor while it's hot.  Return to pot to reheat if needed.  Enjoy!


I am not talking your "ordinary" salad, I am talking about a fun, hip salad; the kind of salad you want everyone to see and taste!  Mediterranean Salad, courtesy of Betty Goes Vegan.

4 cups of baby spinach
1/4 cup basil leaves, fresh
2 large navel oranges, peeled and segmented
1 large bell pepper, sliced
1 cucumber, sliced
1/2 cup kalamata olives, chopped
1/2 cup seedless red grapes, chopped
4 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
1 15 oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 large tomato, chopped
Plant based Greek dressing on the side

In a large bowl toss everything together, making sure to mix well.  That easy!  Sure to be a hit!

The Stuffing…you have to have it…

Stuffing, everyone makes it, hardly anyone eat's it, but it is always there, coming back every Thanksgiving, sitting in a bowl, waiting to be ate.  It is one of those silent rules, you must make it because it is Thanksgiving and you are sure that the Pilgrims ate it, therefore it must go on the table, to be thrown out later.  This year I have come up with a Quiona Stuffing,(  I am positive it will be published in my cookbook some day! ) that I will make outside the bird.

2 cups cooked quinoa in vegetable broth
3 1/2 cups vegetable broth
2 gloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
2 large apples, peeled, cored and chopped
1/2 cup cranberries
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/4 dried cranberries
black pepper to taste
1/2 sage

In a pot cook quinoa in 3 cups vegetable broth, about 20 minutes.  In a sauce pan, sauté onions, celery, garlic together, until tender.  Add the apples, pine nuts, cranberries, pepper and sage.  Stir well.  Add the cooked quinoa.  Add the last 1/2 cup vegetable broth, stir again.  Add to a greased oven safe dish, bake at 375 for 10 to 15 minutes. I am positive there will be nothing left!

And the grand finale, Dessert!

Warm weather, sand between our toes, the beautiful ocean, yes, I am remembering our time in the Bahamas.  It was such a great four days, no cares in the world, my family together  with my sister's, laughing, exploring and eating a piece of rum cake!  This recipe, for Tortuga Rum Cake,  is courtesy of The Happy Herbivore, and you will love it!

1 cup of oat flour
1 cup of white whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2/3 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup dark rum
1/2 non dairy milk ( I prefer almond milk)

1 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp rum
1 tbsp tangerine or orange zest
2 tsp nondairy milk

Preheat oven to 350 F, grease a 8 or 9 inch square pan or bundt pan.  In a mixing bowl, combine the oat flour and wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices and sugar.  Add wet ingredients in order, stir to combine.  Pour into your prepared pan and bake for 25 to 40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  While the cake is baking make the icing.  In a small bowl whisk together sugar, rum, zest and milk until glaze forms.  Spoon icing over the cake, serve and listen to all the ooh's and ahh's!

From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving, may it be blessed!

Enjoy YOUR day!


1 comment:

  1. Oh wow Ann! Zeke has grown up!! What a great photo of your family! :) *just now seeing this as I am just now getting back into checking out blogs...* :) Happy day to you!