Friday, November 17, 2006

ideas for a vegetarian Thanksgiving

I will be on the radio today - 920 am KVEC, the Dave Congalton show. You can listen to the program live or after the fact if you go to

Anyway - I thought I'd post some ideas and recipes here for a meatless thanksgiving.

We have gone several different ways on Thanksgiving.

- Traditional type food - some sort of veggie roast or stuffed squash with traditional sides

- Non traditional food for thanksgiving but still a special dinner

- Forgot the big dinner and just do something special


The Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook has many recipes that would be great for a traditional type of vegetarian Thanksgiving.

Creamy Parsnip Soup
Squash and White Bean Soup

Mashed Potatoes
Roasted Root Vegetables
Baked Winter Squash
Brussels Sprouts with White Sauce
Cauliflower with Toasted Walnuts
Sweet Potato-Spelt Biscuits

Bean and Nut Loaf
Shepherd’s Pie

Mushroom Gravy

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars
Cranberry Pumpkin Cookies
Coconut Sweet Potato Pie
Apple Crisp

Other resources:

The Passionate Vegetarian has recipes for stuffed squashes and pumpkin.

Gourmet Magazine this month has suggestions and recipes for a vegetarian thanksgiving which includes carrot soup, creamed leaks, whole roasted cauliflower, and pumpkin-ginger cheesecake.

Here's a delicious recipe I adapted that I found on the discussion boards:

Red Lentil Roast

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups red lentils
3 cups water
1 cup grated cheese (optional)
1 beaten egg (or egg substitute)
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon sea salt
dash ground nutmeg

In medium sauce pan, saute onions and garlic in olive oil about 5 minutes or until soft. Add lentils and water. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until lentils are soft - about 25 minutes. (This step can be done ahead of time and kept refrigerated until ready to bake loaf.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Oil a medium sized baking dish. Add remaining ingredients to lentils and stir until combined. Pour into prepared baking dish. Bake uncovered for 40 to 45 minutes - or until top is golden. Serve with gravy. Serves six.

Non Traditional Dinner Ideas

Sometimes, I just ask my family what special dinner they would like. Here are some we've done:
From the Vegetarian Mother's Cookbook (which of course has all our favorite recipes):

- Butternut Squash Lasagna
- Pumpkin Seed Pesto Ravioli
- Tamale Pie
- Tofu Vegetable Pot Pie

- You could also make your own pizzas or tacos
- Make breakfast for dinner – pancakes, waffles, etc.

This year, my husband requested scalloped potatoes, my oldest dauther wants Brussels sprouts, my other daughter asked for blackberry turnovers and pumpkin pie. I'm thinking I'm in the mood for spanakopitta.

Non Sit Down Dinner Ideas

Last year, we took a picnic to Montana D’Oro. I made potato salad, sesame noodle salad, taboili, hummus, raw veggies and brought pita pockets to stuff. We had oatmeal chocolate chip cookies for dessert. After our picnic, we hiked and watched an incredible sunset.

Several years ago, I volunteered to bring dinners to senior citizens and visit with them.

Other ideas:

- camping trip
- beach walk
- bike ride
- voluteer to bring dinners to senior citicens
- volunteer in soup kitchen
- make Christmas presents
- write letters to people you are thankful to
- play games
- watch old movies and make popcorn

More ideas and recipes can be found here:

1 comment:

jdelacyolson said...

Cathe I remember listening to this! Great stuff.