Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving 2012! A Menu As Easy As 1-2-3

Thanksgiving is not exactly considered a vegan holiday thanks to all those turkeys getting eaten.  But it doesn't mean we can't partake in the feast too!  It's actually not as tricky as you'd think to make a vegan Thanksgiving Feast-sides and all!  To see what I did last year on Thanksgiving, click here.


MASHED POTATOES

SNEAKY MASHED POTATOES
makes 4 servings

Leave the potato peels on for more nutritional value.  Just be sure to remove any eyes or rough parts first.  The sneaky cauliflower is hidden nicely in this side dish. Shh, it will be our little secret…

6 medium yellow or white potatoes (or 4 large), peeled and cut into large chunks

3 C. cauliflower, cut into large chunks

3 Tb. Earth Balance butter

¼ C. soy or rice milk, regular flavor

1 tsp. sea salt

ground black pepper to taste

fresh herbs of choice (chives are great!)

Directions:

  Step 1.  Place the potatoes in a large pot and fill with enough water to cover them. 

  Step 2.  Boil for about 12 minutes, then add in the cauliflower.

  Step 3.  Cook both potatoes and cauliflower for about 8 minutes more or until potatoes are tender when poked with a fork.

  Step 4.  Drain and place back into the warm pot.

  Step 5.  Add butter, milk and salt.  Mash with a hand-held masher until smooth. (Some prefer their mashed potatoes a bit lumpier, others like it smooth so you be the judge.)

  Step 6.    Add any additional salt, pepper and herbs you desire.

TIP: If your potato/cauliflower mixture is too dry, simply add 1 tablespoon more of milk at a time until the desired consistency is reached.  Stir it in with a large wooden spoon.



TOFURKY + CRANBERRY SAUCE

Use the directions on the package.  I may try Field Roast this year as an alternative.  As for the cranberry sauce, I use pre-made, jarred sauce...I'm allowed to get lazy for this one, right?  For a complete list of turkey alternatives, check out this site.

STUFFING

Cornbread Stuffing
makes 8 servings
NOTE: I never measure when I make this recipe so I hope this is close!

1 package cornbread mix* 
1-2 flax eggs (=1-2 Tb. ground flax seeds + warm water)
non-dairy milk

1/2 C. Earth Balance butter
1 medium yellow/white onion, chopped
5 medium stalks celery, chopped
2 C. vegetable broth
8 C. breadcrumbs (I buy the prepackaged stuffing mix without the hydrogenated oils)
1 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. sage (add more or less seasonings to taste or feel free to use the seasoning package in the stuffing mix)

Directions:
Step 1.  Start by making the cornbread according to package directions, but substituting flax eggs for eggs and non-dairy milk for milk (I used Trader Joe's boxed cornbread mix).  One egg= one "flax egg".  To make one flax egg: combine 1 Tb. ground flax seeds + 3 Tb. warm water, stir and let sit for 5 minutes to thicken.

Step 2.  Keep oven on and preheated to 325F if you like your stuffing to be crispy.  Once the cornbread is done baking, heat non-dairy butter over medium heat in a large saute pan or skillet.  Cook onions and celery until translucent while stirring.  It should take about 5-7 minutes.  
Step 3.  Now crumble in about 3/4 of the cooked cornbread into the butter.  Stir in 1 cup of the vegetable broth slowly.

Step 4.  Next stir in the 8 cups of regular breadcrumbs, along with the remaining 1 cup of vegetable broth.  Mix in seasonings, adding more or less to taste.  Continue cooking over low-medium heat until well combined.  

Step 5.  Either serve at this point or bake in the oven (be sure you're using a saute/skillet that's able to handle the oven otherwise transfer to a casserole style dish).  Some people like their stuffing wet, others like it dry so this part is up to you, depending on how long you bake it.  I bake mine for 15 minutes or until it's crispy on top.  

CANDIED SWEET POTATOES

Kid-Friendly Candied Sweet Potatoes
makes about 10 servings

8 medium sized sweet potatoes, peeled
1/2 C. orange juice
1/2 C. pure maple syrup (or use agave nectar)
2 Tb. brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 Tb. non-dairy butter, cut into chunks

Directions:

Step 1.  Preheat oven to 350F.  

Step 2.  Slice peeled sweet potatoes into 2-4 large pieces for faster cooking.  Boil until just barely soft, strain and cool.  (Do not over cook them or they'll break apart.)

Step 3.  In medium bowl, combine orange juice, syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg & vanilla.  

Step 4.  Place cooled sweet potatoes on cutting board & slice into bite-sized chunks.  Put the chunks into ramekins or use a 9" x 13" (or similar size) baking dish.  

Step 5.  Pour liquid mixture evenly over sweet potatoes. Place butter pieces all around sweet potatoes.
Bake 20 minutes.

Step 6.  Sprinkle mini vegan marshmallows on top (or use regular sized vegan ones) and bake an additional 10 minutes or until marshmallows are slightly brown.

*obviously, the more marshmallows you have on top, the more likely it will get eaten by the kids but the yams are super sweet alone too so be sure to let the kids try it!



MANDARIN SALAD

Mandarin Salad
makes 4-6 servings,
my Mom used to make this one on Holidays I always LOVED it!  
I think it comes from the Betty Crocker Cookbook.  I altered it slightly.

1/4 C. sliced almonds
1 Tb. plus 1 tsp. sugar
2 C. romaine lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces
2 C. arugula or baby spinach (or both!), torn into bite sized pieces
2 medium stalks celery, chopped (about 1 C.)
2 green onions (with tops), thinly sliced (about 2 Tb.)
Sweet & Sour Dressing (see below)
1 (11 oz.) can mandarin orange segments, drained

Step 1.  Cook almonds and sugar over low heat, stirring constantly, until sugar is melted and almonds are coated. Cool and break apart.  Store at room temperature.

Step 2.  Place salad leaves in large plastic bag; add celery and onions.  Pour sweet & sour dressing into the bag; add orange segments.  Close bag tightly and shake well until everything is well coated.

Step 3.  Add almonds and shake.

Sweet & Sour Dressing:
1/4 C. vegetable oil
2 Tb. sugar
2 Tb. vinegar
1 Tb. fresh parsley, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp. sea salt
ground black pepper to taste
dash of red pepper sauce (optional)

Step 1.  Shake all ingredients in a tightly covered jar; refrigerate unti ready to use.



POTATO SALAD

Vegan Potato Salad
serves 4

4 large potatoes, peeled
1/2 C. Veganaise or vegan mayonaise
3/4 C. celery, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 C. red bell pepper, diced
1/2 C. sweet pickle relish, plus 1 Tb. of the liquid*
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/2 Tb. dijon mustard
1 1/2 tsp. sugar
salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

Step 1.  Boil peeled potatoes in large pot of salted water.  Cook until tender but firm, about 12 minutes.  

Step 2.  Drain & let cool, then chop into bite-sized pieces.

Step 3.  Add all of the other ingredients and combine until well mixed.

Step 4.  Refrigerate until chilled.

*the addition of the sweet pickle relish liquid adds so much to this recipe...a secret from my  mother-in-law


Want more Thanksgiving recipes?  
Try this Pumpkin Pie recipe, or this Green Bean recipe!

Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving from 

my Veggie Kids Family to yours! 
 

  Want to see more Veggie Kids?  
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