Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Three - My House

Finally, as promised, here is my vegan Thanksgiving menu (well, vegan minus the turkey mom brought of course).
Smashed Sweet Potatoes
Wild Mushroom Green Bean Casserole
Pumpkin Risotto
Apricot Glazed Brussels Sprouts
Homemade rolls (wheat and gluten-free)
Turkey with dressing (brought by my mom)
Faux chicken with chipotle cranberry relish for myself
Vegan Gravy (courtesy of Angela at Oh She Glows)
Gluten-free Pumpkin Roulade (from local bakery)

I started off Friday morning around 8 am prepping some of the food to make it easier to put together when it came time to eat. Onion rings smell really odd at 8 am I might add.

I steamed the sweet potatoes and sat those aside. I knew I could reheat them in the microwave and smash them at the last minute. I reconstituted the mushrooms and put together the green bean casserole ahead of time, leaving the onion rings off of course.

I also made the gravy as well so that I could put away all small kitchen appliances. I really was trying my best to have the kitchen as neat as possible when everyone arrived. It makes me nervous when the kitchen is a disaster and people are milling around in there with me.

I did have a snack platter with fruits, olives, cheeses, and crackers for everyone to nibble on - thought that would also keep people busy and out of the kitchen ;-)

It ended up being a gorgeous day finally; I even managed to get in a great 8 mile run before the chaos...I mean fun...began. Because it was so nice, mom was actually able to take the kids to the park down the street to play for a bit and we were also able to open up the windows for fresh air.

I set up the tables Thursday night. Not exactly the most beautiful setting as I had to use my kitchen table with a folding table. I sort of forgot about a table cloth and ended up having to us some muslin I thankfully had on hand (but could not get the wrinkles out of).
 

I think it all ended up looking pretty nice over all though. Not too fancy, but still special. I set out the food on the pool table. This made it easy to get our food and sit down to eat, plus far more space than using the kitchen counters.
 
 
 
I think it was a success. The food turned out great and the company, of course, made it that much better. Another great day with family.

Wild Mushroom Green Bean Casserole
Ingredients:
green beans
1/2 white onion, thinly sliced
mix of dried wild mushrooms (I used one 1 oz. package)
1 portobello mushroom, small dice
1 - 1 1/2 cups no-salt vegetable broth
1 package silken tofu (firm)
To taste: salt, pepper, thyme, parsley, red pepper, nutritional yeast flakes
Gluten-free seasoned coating mix
Almond milk
1/2 white onion, cut into medium sized rounds

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Dredge the onion rings into the almond milk then into coating mix. Place on prepared baking sheet and bake until golden - approximately 25 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Steam green beans until just tender then immediately transfer to ice bath to stop the cooking. Drain and set aside. Once cooled, cut into smaller pieces.

In sauce pan, saute onions on low heat for approximately 10 minutes then add in the portobello mushrooms allowing them to begin to caramelize. Once softened, add in broth and mushrooms and allow to simmer until mushrooms are reconstituted and soft. Remove from heat and remove the mushrooms from broth and chop. Don't toss the broth.

In food processor, puree the tofu with the mushroom broth (start with about 1/2 a cup) and seasonings until smooth. You do want it to be a little thin so that during baking it doesn't get too dry.

In large bowl, mix together the green beans, mushrooms, and tofu mixture. Transfer to large baking dish. Bake approximately 20 minutes then add the onion rings and bake an additional 10-15 minutes being careful not to burn the onions.

Apricot Glazed Brussells Sprouts
Ingredients:
Brussels sprouts - outer leaves removed and halved
1/2 - 3/4 cup sugar-free apricot preserves
Balsamic vinegar - enough to thin out preserves
1-2 tbsp olive oil
To taste: salt, pepper, thyme

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375.

In small bowl, whisk together preserves, balsamic vinegar, oil and seasonings.

Toss with sprouts and place in glass baking dish. Cover with foil and bake approximately 20 minutes. Toss sprouts then bake an additional 25-30 minutes until softened.

Curried Pumpkin Risotto
Ingredients:
1/2 white onion finely diced
2 tbsp minced garlic
2 cups arborio rice
6 1/2 cups no-salt vegetable broth
1/2 cup white wine (or more stock)
1 can pumpkin puree
2 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes 
To taste: salt, pepper, parsley, curry powder, garam masala, nutmeg

Directions:
Put stock in large pot and keep simmering.

In a large pot, saute onions and garlic in small amount of olive oil for about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the rice and stir to coat, approximately 1 minute.

Add in 1 cup stock plus 1/2 cup white wine. Stir continuously until liquid is absorbed. Stir in another 2 cups. Stir continuously until liquid is absorbed. Repeat until all liquid is used and rice is cream and al dente. Be careful not to over cook as it will continue to set up as it cools.

Remove from heat and stir in pumpkin, nutritional yeast, and spices.