I well remember my first Thanksgiving, crowded into a London bedsit. I was a medical student in London and supplementing my student grant as an usherette at the National Theatre. One of the usherettes was American, and organized a diverse group of National Theatre employees and international students to create a Thanksgiving feast! Here is a vegetarian or vegan, gluten free, Ayurvedic Thanksgiving menu. You could create a vegetarian Thanksgiving or use these recipes to add variety to the traditional turkey dinner.
· Baked Delicata Squash with Red Quinoa and Pumpkin Seed Stuffing
· Roasted Beet and Arugula Salad with pecans
· Puree de batata (Moroccan mashed potatoes)
· 'Yam'/Sweet Potato Halva
· Cranberry chutney
Baked Delicata Squash with Red Quinoa and Pumpkin Seed Stuffing
English: A picture of delicata squash taken by me in my kitchen. Jordan Archer makes this image available to anyone or company for any use. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Recipe courtesy of Chef Peter Berley author of The Flexitarian Table
2 cups quinoa
4 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil
sea salt or Kosher salt
1/2 cup diced carrots
1/2 cup diced celery
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
1/2 cup dried red cranberries
1/4 cup dried currants
1/3 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
freshly ground black pepper
4 medium Delicata squash, halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
1. Adjust a rack to the middle shelf of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F.
2. Simmer the quinoa in 4 cups of water until fluffy, 15 to 20 minutes.
3. While the quinoa cooks, melt the butter in a
saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the carrots,
celery, ginger, and sage and 1/2 tsp salt.
4. Cover the pan and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 5 to 7 minutes (add a tablespoon of water, if necessary, to prevent scorching.)
5. In a large bowl, toss together the quinoa and vegetables. Stir in the dried fruit, pumpkin seeds, nutmeg, and cinnamon, season with salt and pepper.
6. Brush the skin of the squash lightly with oil. Place the squash, cut side down, in a baking pan large enough to hold them in a snug single layer.
7. Pour ½-inch of boiling water into the pan and bake for 20 minutes (you want the squash to have softened slightly, but not completely). Transfer the squash to a plate and let rest until cool enough to handle.
8. Stuff the squash halves with the quinoa mixture, return them, stuffing-up, to the pan, and bake until the flesh can be easily pierced with the tip of a paring knife, 20 to 30 minutes.
Roasted Beet and Arugula Salad
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
- 3 large golden beets (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 4 oz baby arugula leaves, washed (about 2 large handfuls)
- 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 oz goat feta or soy cheese
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
oven to 375 degrees F.
Wash the beets and coat with 1 tbsp of the oil. Wrap in several layers of foil and bake for 1 hour or until tender. Let cool to room temp or refrigerate. This may be done in advance.
With a knife, scrap off the beet skin, and cut in 1-inch cubes. Add to a mixing bowl, and add the rest of the ingredients, except the goat cheese. Toss well to combine, and divide on to 4 plates. Crumble over the cheese, and serve.
Pure de batata (Moroccan mashed potatoes)
Serves 16 as a side dish
5 large baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 tbsp Olive Oil (or as needed)
1.5 tsp Turmeric powder (or as needed to create a primrose colour)
1.5 tsp Salt (or to taste)
1 tsp ground black pepper
½ tsp ground cumin
Boil the potatoes over medium-high heat and cook for about 20 minutes, till they can be easily pierced with a fork. When the potatoes are done, drain them and mash well. Add turmeric, salt, black pepper and cumin.
Add the remaining olive oil. Mix well to make the potatoes creamy.
'Yam'/Sweet Potato Halva
The softer, orange-fleshed variety of sweet potato, commonly referred to as a yam in the United States (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
4 medium 'yams' i.e. orange/golden sweet potatoes
4 tbsp. ghee or coconut oil
1 tsp. green cardamom powder
¼ cup chopped almonds
Boil yams in their skin. When cool, peel and mash. Add and mix cardamom powder
Heat ghee in a heavy bottomed pan.
Fry mashed yams, stirring frequently, until ghee begins to separate. The halva tastes better when fried well.
Cook, stirring all the time, for a further 2-3 minutes.
Turn off heat and add 2/3rd of the nuts. Mix.
Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with remaining nuts. Serve hot.
Cranberry apple Chutney
2 punnets organic cranberries ( 4 cups)
4 cups chopped apples
1/4 tsp raisins
2 tbsp chopped pecans
2" piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped finely
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped finely
1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
2 sticks cinnamon
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 Tbsp ghee or sunflower oil
6 cloves, ground
1 star anise, ground (optional but good)
2 pinches mace
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
Water as needed
Put washed cranberries and washed chopped apples in heavy bottomed pan. Grate 1tsp of the orange peel and add. Now squeeze the orange and add the juice. Bring to boil and simmer, stirring frequently to prevent sticking and adding water as needed. Once it is simmering, add sugar and raisins.
In a small frying pan, melt the ghee ,add cumin seeds and chilies and fry until they darken a shade. Now chopped ginger and cinnamon and fry until the ginger is browned.
Add the fried spices to the chutney, then the spice powders (clove, star anise, mace, cardamom.)
When the chutney is almost cooked, add the chopped nuts.