Friday, October 15, 2010

Thankful-Turkey Dinner

The past few years Mr. Mittens and I have worked out a pretty good system for holiday meals. He prepares the big meats and I do the veggie sides. My sister often brings appies/condiments or some other tasty dish. And we buy the pie, preferably pumpkin from SunTerra. Yum! It's not too stressful, always tasty, and has worked really well for us.
This year Mr. Mittens wasn't feeling well and didn't go out and buy the bird. So we just sort of agreed not to have one. I didn't even have to beat him with the vegan stick. I have enjoyed many a turkey in the past, but I like a lot of other things too, so I figured it wouldn't be a huge deal.

So we had:

whole wheat buns (and no, I didn't make those either. I don't have ALL the time in the world)

homemade cranberry sauce (with maple syrup and orange juice instead of the white stuff)

spinach salad with those yummy little oranges and homemade dressing (easy peasy)

pickles and olives (always a crowd pleaser around here, certain small people consider them main dishes)

roasted vegies (potatoes, sweet potatoes, a few turnips and rutabaga, and carrots)

quinoa dish (I 'adapted' the Sensational Stuffing With Nuts recipe from The Vegan Table. I had the notion that I could take the recipe for stuffing and substitute the bread for quinoa. It didn't really taste like stuffing, but it was yummy.
  1. cook quinoa in veggie stock
  2. saute onion, celery, carrot
  3. mix together with a few spices like sage, thyme, rosemary
  4. throw all together with some dried cranberries, walnuts and chopped parsley

Mighty Miso Gravy (From How It All Vegan. A key component to add a meaty/hearty flavor. It's been a hit around here. I've also made this into mushroom soup just by increasing the veggie stock and flour and then adding a big of almond milk at the end. Adjust herbs to taste)

Mighty Miso Gravy

6-10 mushrooms chopped
1 medium onion chopped
1 tbsp. Olive oil
2-3 tbsp. Braggs Liquid Aminos or soy sauce
Cayenne pepper (to taste)
Dried basil (to taste)
Dried dill (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)
1/3-1/2 cup of flour
1 1/3 cups vegetable stock or water
1 tsp. miso

In a medium saucepan, saute the mushrooms and onions in oil on medium high heat until onions are translucent and mushrooms are tender. Add the Braggs, cayenne, basil, dill and pepper and stir. Remove from heat and slowly stir in the flour, mixing together well. It will become past and dry. Slowly start adding the stock a little at a time until everything becomes well mixed and there is no lumps. Place back into medium heat and simmer until sauce is thickened, stirring often. At the last minute, stir in miso and serve.

And to seal the deal, I also had some Tofurkey deli slices so we could have them in buns with cranberries and gravy. And no, it wasn't the same. And no, Mr. Mittens wasn't having any that.
But the kids like it just fine.

All in all, I think it was fairly successful. I don't think it was completely comparable to a full-on turkey feast, BUT, my stomach and my conscience are happier for it.
We are still blessed with abundance beyond measure. And we are thankful. And so is some crazy gobbling turkey somewhere running around today. HA!

I didn't get any photos of the BIG meal, but this is a bowl of leftovers. Still just as yummy. Maybe even more.
I don't want to give the impression that I'm 100% pure, healthy vegan eating all the time. Some things are pretty easy to avoid but I find myself still making my kids KD when I want a fast meal (with Earth Balance and almond milk) and then wanting to eat the whole pot of cheesy goodness myself.
And do not ask what we had for lunch at the amusement park, ACK!
I just tell myself that every good choice counts!


Daisy Patch said...

Sounds interesting but I think I will stick to turkey, stuffing,gravy and apple pie! LOL! :)

Two Mittens said...

I don't blame you ;) mmmmmmm...I could eat some right now!

Mrs. M said...

Mmmmm...I love it!
And ya know...the tofurkey bunwiches sound yummy to me. Scary hey!?!:)

Alyson said...

Simple is great. sounds like you weren't really missing anything. My husband wouldn't be so easy going about the lack of meat. But it is a process isn't it.

So Smitten said...

yeah, no turkey but my hubby and kids had huge cheeseburgers and fries for lunch that day. NOT my idea. I may have had a bite...

To be fair he's had a lot of veggie meals lately. Sometimes he just adds steak or fish.