Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A Table Full of Thanks

I don't know where the time goes.  Seriously?  It's been over a month since I last wrote here?

I think that's what happens this time of year.  Holiday events and excitement make the days and weeks fly by.  Speaking of holiday events, our family enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving with dear friends this year.  So much to be thankful for.  I just love sitting around the table enjoying a meal with people I love.  It might be one of my favorite things.  Maybe that's why I love to cook.  Thus, the stack of recipe books piled up next to my bed.  Many of you have asked what kinds of plant based foods I cook on special occasions.  Well, this year I didn't have to worry about the main course so I got to have fun with a few sides.

Here's a recipe I've been wanting to try for a while.  I'll be honest.  I've had brussels sprouts a few times in my life and never liked them.  Still, the recipe (and picture) in Power Foods looked so good, I just had to try it.  Even though brussels sprouts are a power food - high in fiber and loaded with Vitamins A and C - I still maintain that good food should taste good too.  Thankfully (and somewhat surprisingly), this one delivered on both fronts!

I took my Thanksgiving shopping list and headed off to Trader Joe's.  I stood and stared at this heap of brussels sprouts for a few minutes.  I had never seen them like this and wasn't quite sure how it all worked. Finally, I asked a nice little grandma who was meticulously searching for the perfect stalk.

Um, excuse me.  What exactly do you do with this? 

Oh honey, you just twist the suckers off!  

I had to laugh.

But that's exactly what I did - twisted the suckers off.

This is right before it went into the oven. I wish I got an "after" picture but I was too busy sampling.  It was delicious.  And this is coming from someone who has never smiled while eating a brussels sprout.  I thought it was fabulous.  The sweetness of the pears, the buttery sprouts, the caramelized shallots.  Yummmmy!  Click here for the recipe.  

In addition to the whole giving thanks part, the other thing I love about Thanksgiving is the abundance of... yup, you guessed it - cranberries.  Packed with phytochemicals and disease-fighting antioxidants, the benefits of these little berries go on and on. 

One day I'll figure out a healthier version of my favorite cranberry cornbread recipe, until then, it's all in moderation.  

I never knew the full goodness of fall vegetables until I moved to the Pacific Northwest.  Wherever you live, you'll still find some delicious squash and sweet potatoes in your local grocery store.  This recipe is so easy.  Just choose the veggies you like, toss with olive oil and rosemary and roast.  The key is rotating your pan and tossing the veggies about every 15 minutes.

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday.  While Thanksgiving may be over, the giving thanks continues.  

With love and gratitude, 

1 comment:

  1. Yum! I personally like brussel sprouts, but then my husband is a good cook. The little lady in Trader Joe's comment made me laugh.