Celebrating the Spring Holidays

Delicious Non-Traditional Thanksgiving Sides

Delicious Non-Traditional Thanksgiving Sides


This year, maybe change is in the air for
your Thanksgiving table. Before you pull out the same old family recipes
that everyone’s familiar with, let’s take a detour down some culinary side streets and
explore a few of the season’s more non-traditional side dishes. If you want to honor the history of Thanksgiving
this year, you might consider serving a Native American side dish like wild rice with cranberries. The Anishinaabe peoples of northern Minnesota
and other tribes have harvested wild rice for hundreds of years, and there are plenty
of ways to cook it. This dish takes advantage of the cranberries,
mushrooms, and wild rice that are in season around Thanksgiving time, making for a delicious,
colorful mix. The wild rice is rich in nutrients, including
zinc and manganese. So are the cranberries, which contain a ton
of dietary fiber and a healthy dose of vitamins C, E, and K. Wild rice may take a long time to cook, but
it’s worth the wait. If you want to be creative, consider adding
toasted or spiced pecans, pine nuts, walnuts, or shredded carrots. You can pair this dish with turkey, but it
can also compliment ham, roast beef, venison, and any other side dishes on your menu. Your guests will love it. Just because pumpkin pie is a Thanksgiving
staple doesn’t mean it wouldn’t benefit from a makeover. One way to make your pumpkin extra posh is
by serving a savory souffle. Despite their finicky reputation, souffles
aren’t that tricky to put together, and can also be prepared well in advance to take the
pressure off. The pumpkin souffle hits all the right flavor
notes one expects from a great Thanksgiving dish. Mix a silky pumpkin puree with a sage-infused
bechamel, crumbled amaretti cookies, grated Parmesan, bourbon, nutmeg, and egg whites
for a wonderfully rich result. Southern cooks with any know-how will tell
you the best grits are slowly cooked from scratch, and aren’t fussy with too many ingredients. If you’re not familiar, grits are a smooth
porridge made from the ground dried hull of corn kernels, or hominy, which can be bought
either whole in cans, or dried and ground. If you want to add the Southern staple to
your menu, consider serving Alton Brown’s recipe for cheesy grits. Full-fat butter makes the dish extremely creamy,
and the smooth, velvety texture of whole milk laced with the intense tang from the sharp
cheddar cheese is all you need to make your Thanksgiving dinner that much more decadent. If you’re on the hunt for an offbeat side
dish, check out lentils. They’re a significant source of low-fat protein
and a super source of folate, dietary fiber, and other nutritious things our bodies need
to stay healthy. To make a top-rate side dish, look for Puy
lentils from the Auvergne region in France, which are considered the finest in the world. These tiny green lentils are spicy, tender,
and creamy like a lima bean when cooked. One variation on the recipe includes tomatoes,
spinach, fresh parsley, lemon juice, and shallots, which compliment the lentils while keeping
their flavor center-stage. Brussels sprouts may turn off a lot of folks,
but they can be a showstopper with the right recipe. When they’re prepared with balsamic vinegar
and pancetta, they’re downright certain to please. Pancetta caramelizes beautifully in the oven,
infusing its sweet flavors with the rest of the dish to flavorful result. Ina Garten’s recipe for this dish transforms
the bitter taste of Brussels sprouts into a classic sweet/salty harmony as the vinegar
caramelizes, turning the exterior of the sprouts into crisp little orbs with tender centers. You may be surprised how much you like them. No Thanksgiving meal is complete without potatoes. If you want to serve something other than
mashed, look no further than potatoes dauphinoise, which is somewhat similar to potatoes au gratin. Not only is it difficult to screw up, it’s
also delicious. A traditional French country dish, potatoes
dauphinoise is made with thin slices of golden potatoes, whose thin skins and powdery starches
make them great for roasting. Those slices are then layered with milk or
cream and half-and-half seasoned with tiny bits of garlic clove, salt and pepper, and
cheese. As the potatoes cook, they release their starches,
which coagulate with the milk and form a creamy coating that is absorbed right through the
potatoes. The result is a plateful of buttery, smooth,
tender bites that melt in your mouth. And there’s a lot to be thankful for with
a dish like that.


Reader Comments

  1. I don’t know if anyone else does this

    Green bean casserole

    1. Green beans

    2. Some frenches fried onions

    3. Cream of mushroom

  2. You should consider changing the channel name because there is already a channel named mashed and that channel started years before this channel

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