Vegetarian Thanksgiving

Mel's tofurkey

Hey guys, thanks for following my blog and trying out the recipes. I’ve received some positive feedback so far and I am overjoyed. It’s fun to have a venue where you can talk about something that you love.

Seeing as it is a week before thanksgiving, I thought I would take this opportunity to talk about veggie thanksgiving options! The first thing that probably comes to mind is TOFURKEY! Despite the negative impressions, tofurkey can be a delicious centrepiece for a holiday dinner.

My tofurkey rules:

1. NEVER ever buy store-bought tofurkey! It’s absolutely awful.

2. Tis’ the season to SEASON! Lots of fresh herbs and spices will make your tofurkey tasty!

3. It’s all Gravy! Tofu can sometimes be a bit dry, so gravy is a necessary accompaniment. Just because you don’t have a bird, doesn’t mean you can’t make a delicious gravy out of vegetarian ingredients, like mushrooms!

There are a number of great home-made tofurkey recipes which I’ve listed below. The process is not that difficult but does require a bit of time and dedication. A lot of people don’t really understand what goes into tofurkey. Basically, you put tofu into a food processor with your seasoning to make a tofu mush. This mush is placed into cloth lined colander, weighed down and drained overnight.  Once the tofu is very well drained, you dig a hole to place your stuffing inside. Cover up the stuffing with the remaining tofu and flip the entire colander over onto casserole dish. Bake and baste your tofu concoction for 45- 60 minutes and you’ve got TOFURKEY! Since tofurkey doesn’t produce fat like a real turkey would, you baste with a homemade marinade. The end result should have a crispy exterior.

There is no secret recipe that works best. If you want it to taste like turkey use poultry seasoning. I use a combination of fresh herbs, spices and soy sauce. Some recipes call for nutritional yeast.

Although this video is low quality, it carefully covers the process step by step. It actually shows you how to make tofurkey skin and little legs.  I’ve never gone through that trouble but it could be a fun experiment.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKIrgls-WCw

My favourite tofurkey recipes:

Chef in you – Vegan tofu turkey

Chow – Tofurkey with brown rice stuffing  with Mushroom gravy

Vegetarian thanksgiving side-dishes:

Now that we’ve got tofurkey out of the way, here are a few suggestions for fabulous vegetarian side-dishes.

1. Mashed potatoes or Vegan mashed potatoes

2. It’s Canadian thanksgiving so how about a little maple, eh? Maple roasted sweet potatoes & Maple roasted brussels sprouts

3. Baby spinach & cranberry salad

4. Roasted beet & carrot salad, thanks Martha!

5. Green beans with roasted almonds

6. Butternut squash soup

7. Cranberry sauce 

So yes, holidays don’t have to be all about ham or lamb or turkey. There are some great options out there for us vegetarians too!

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