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What’s In Season...

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Ahh Autumn…as the temperature drops outside, nothing is more comforting than entering a home where the warm smells of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg greet you at the door. With so many holidays around the corner, it is a great time to grab a stepstool and get the kids cooking beside you in the kitchen. Forget about the mess. Everything can be cleaned up later but the happy memories will last a lifetime.

Here are a few of our favorite holiday dishes. Let us know what your family favorites are too!

Roasted Root Vegetables:

Roasting brings out the natural sweetness in the vegetables and a splash of maple syrup adds a rich flavor. You can use any combination of root vegetables that are available. I have substituted butternut squash and pumpkin in place of the sweet potatoes. It all works! Check out your local farmers market for more options.

2 carrots

2-4 parsnips

1 large sweet potato

1 large yellow or white onion

2 medium (or 3-4 small) turnips

4 shallots

¼ cup maple syrup

2 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

1) Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

2) Peel the first 6 ingredients, chop coarsely and add to large mixing bowl.

3) Add maple syrup and olive oil, then mix together. Pour onto oiled jelly roll pan and spread flat. Evenly distribute salt over top.

4) Bake for 30 minutes, stirring halfway through. Vegetables should be tender and beautifully browned.

Cranberry Sage Quinoa with Pecans:

The fresh cranberries in this dish add just the right amount of tartness without overpowering the subtle sage. If you can’t find fresh berries or herbs, dried works just as well. This quinoa combination can work as either a main course or a side dish, perfect for those of you who have both vegans and non-vegans at your Thanksgiving table. The ingredients can also be doubled or tripled if you need larger amounts.

½ cup Quinoa

1 cup Water or Vegetable Stock

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1 Tablespoon fresh Sage, chopped finely (or 1 teaspoon dried)

3 Tablespoons fresh Cranberries, chopped (2 Tablespoons if dried)

2 Tablespoons Pecans, chopped

1 Tablespoon oil

½ teaspoon salt

1) Rinse quinoa in strainer to remove any grit.

2) Bring water or stock to a boil, add quinoa and cover. Cook for 12-15 minutes until you see the quinoa has ‘burst’ open.

3) In separate pan, add oil and sauté the sage, cranberries and pecans for 4 minutes.

4) Add cooked quinoa to pan and stir. If quinoa is too dry, add an additional drizzle of oil. Salt to taste and serve.

Apple Crumble:

This dessert transforms the crunch of a recently harvested apple into warm chewy goodness. There are many types of apples available this time of year so use the one your family likes best. We favor the Pink Lady, Fuji and Braeburn varieties. The other ingredients in this recipe allow the natural flavor of the apple to shine through. If you have any dried cranberries leftover from the quinoa, toss them in the crumble too!

2-3 pounds of Apples (enough to fill a 9 x 13 pan)

2 teaspoons lemon juice

2 Tablespoons Sugar

¼ cup Almonds or Walnuts, chopped

½ teaspoon Nutmeg

1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

Topping:

½ cup Flour

½ cup Oats

2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar

¼ teaspoon Cinnamon

2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil or Walnut Oil

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2) Peel, core and cut apples into bite size pieces. Toss first 5 ingredients into bowl with apples. Then spread out in a 9 x 13 pan.

3) Mix the topping ingredients together and sprinkle evenly over apple mixture.

4) Bake for 35 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes, then top with non-dairy vanilla ice cream.

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- Louise Goldberg RD, CSP, LD, CNSC

Green Plate Foods Nutrition Consultant

Visit Louise's website to learn more about her: http://anappleadaynutrition.com/about/