Photo by Rachel Swetnam Los Angeles Food Photographer
The side dish. Probably the best part of any meal. I always thought it would be fun to open a restaurant called side dish. That’s how much I love side dishes. Well as a vegan, Thanksgiving dinner becomes a side dish celebration because the turkey is out of the picture. So this year i made several delightful side dishes. Some of these recipes are straight from the source, others have been changed to accomidate the vegan diet while others are a whole new creation based on old family favorites… So here we go… The Side Dishes of Vegan Thanksgiving 2011.
Fig and Chestnut Dressing
(Adapted from RealSimple Magazine)
Preheat Oven to 375
10 C. day-old multigrain or whole-wheat bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 C. cooled Roasted Chestnuts or 2 7.4-ounce jars dried chestnuts (2 cups), chopped
1 C. dried mission figs, chopped (I used a combo of Turkish Figs and Mission Figs)
2 T. olive oil
1 C. Onion, chopped
1 1/2 C. Celery, chopped
3 1/2 C. Vegetable Broth or “Not” chicken broth
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1. Mix together bread, figs and chestnuts in a large bowl.
2. In a medium skillet saute in olive oil the onion and celery. Cook for 5 minutes. Add veggie broth, thyme salt and pepper and heat to a boil.
3. Pour the stock mixture into the bowl with the bread mixture and carefully toss to combine.
4. Cook at 375 for 35-40 minutes or until top is golden brown.
Pear. Pecan and Cranberry Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
For Copyright reasons I will just send you to this amazing recipe at Epicurious.com
I’ve been making this recipe for the past few years and it is ALWAYS a hit!
Here are my only two modifications:
1. To make vegan use a non dairy butter spread.
2. After you cut open the potatoes, with a fork mash the inside of the potato before stuffing it with the pear, pecan and cranberry mixture.
Cranberry and Fig Compote (RealSimple Magazine)
This recipe was OK. I would suggest doubling the amount of honey and fig. Also I suggest making it at least 4-5 days in advance. Then store it in an air tight container until you are ready to serve!
Mama Gail’s Famous Green Bean Casserole
Growing up my mom always made the most amazing green bean casserole. What was in it? Well all I remember was this garlic herb cheese and a lot of french fried onions.. Yes Please! Well.. I guess not so much anymore! When I became Vegan she figured out a way to adapt all of the family favorites into tasty vegan dishes! And boy oh boy, they were never better!
2 quarts water
1 tablespoon table salt
2 lbsfresh green beans, trimmed, cut lengthwise (french cut) and in bite size pies
10 oz. mushrooms, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons flour
3/4 C. vegetable broth
2 T.dry sherry
1 C. soy creamer
1 tablespoon Earth Balance margarine (the best tasting margarine in the world and no trans-fat)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/16 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 3-ounce can of French fried onions
1. In a pot heat water and salt to a boil. Once water is boiling place the cut green beans in the water and cook for 6 minutes. Remove and drain green beans, place in a large bowl and set aside.
2. In a large skillet at medium heat saute sliced mushrooms, garlic, salt and pepper in olive oil. When Mushrooms are soft, whisk in flour and vegetable broth (remember to whisk quickly to avoid clumps). After 3 minutes add sherry and soy creamer. Cook at a simmer for about 7-10 minutes.
3. Add mushroom sauce to the green beans with 1 C. of french fried onions. Mix together. Cover mixture and let sit overnight (up to 3 days).
4. When you are ready to cook pour the green bean mixture into a 9×13 baking pan and top with French Fried onion rings.
5. Cook at 425 for 15-20 minutes. Serve hot!