Thanksgiving Dinner – The Veg


We have finally finished the Turkey, just as our American friends and family are tucking into theirs. We even got to the point where one child was heard to say “I really have had enough of Turkey” and so begins her annual love affair / ‘there’s a reason why we don’t eat turkey every week’ ritual. I posted the wonderful Caramel Tart dessert a few days ago, here is a selection of the vegetable sides we had, I’ll post the stuffings later this week. It is one meal in the year that the main meat plays second fiddle (to me anyway) and I have a small think about vegetarian food,  could i manage this all year and then remember I love steak, and venison and all meats and fish too much. But this sort of food makes me wonder! (Presuming of course that vegetarians eat chorizo and bacon!)

Brussels Sprout Leaves with Chorizo and Toasted Almonds

Roast Carrot & Sweet Potato with Yogurt Cumin Dressing


Sausage, Apple & Cranberry Stuffing – later this week

Chorizo, Orange & Almond Stuffing – later this week

Brussels Sprout Leaves with Chorizo and Toasted Almonds

  • ½ cup skin-on almonds (not roasted)
  • 6 ounces Spanish chorizo, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 pounds brussels sprouts, stems trimmed, halved, leaves separated
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar





Toast almonds in a dry small skillet over medium heat, tossing occasionally, until fragrant and slightly darkened, 5–8 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.
Cook chorizo in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until fat starts to render and chorizo is crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer chorizo to a small bowl and wipe skillet clean (don’t skip this step or the reddish-brown chorizo drippings will make brussels sprouts look muddy).
Heat oil in same skillet over medium-high and cook garlic and thyme, stirring occasionally, until garlic is fragrant and golden, about 1 minute. Working in batches, add brussels sprout leaves, tossing and letting them wilt slightly before adding more; season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing occasionally, until leaves are browned in spots and tender, 8–10 minutes.
Remove from heat and add vinegar, almonds, and chorizo; toss to combine. Season with salt, pepper, and more vinegar, if desired.
IMG_0032Roast Carrot & Sweet Potato with Yogurt Cumin Dressing

 2 pounds carrots and two sweet potatoes cut into 2” pieces

2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp. olive oil

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

¼ cup chopped cilantro / coriander leaves, plus more for serving


  • Preheat oven to 450°. Toss carrots, sweet potatoes, orange juice, thyme and ¼ cup oil on a rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing halfway through, until golden brown and soft, 30–35 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, toast coriander in a small dry skillet over medium-high heat, tossing, until fragrant, about 1 minute; transfer to a plate. Repeat with cumin. Let cool; coarsely chop.
  • Purée coriander, cumin, yogurt, lime juice, ¼ cup cilantro/coriander, and remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a food processor until smooth; season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve carrots & potatoes topped with cumin yogurt & some chopped cilantro.
  • Serve.
I have read that this dish as originally prepared by North Eastern Native Americans and is popular in New England as part of the Thanksgiving feast. That said, my sister who lives in Rhode Island, which is most definitely New England I think, had never heard of it. Wherever it comes from, it is the one dish my family ask to be repeated each year. It is definitely cheap and cheerful, and was apparently popular during the Great Depression as a filling crowd-pleaser. Which describes it perfectly. This is my version.
2 tins corn
300ml cream
1 large onion finely chopped
300g bacon lardons / chopped bacon
1 tin Butter Beans
500ml chicken stock
  • Fry the onion and bacon in a knob of butter and a little oil


  • Add the Corn, cream and chicken stock
  • Add the butter beans



  • Cook gently for 20/30 minutes. (I usually prepare this in the morning and simply reheat as I’m slicing the turkey)
  • Serve. (Ignore the mess my son made serving himself a family size portion)


The joy of Thanksgiving. Turning this…..


into this:




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