A Very Vegan Turkey Day: Hold the Meat!


Turkey and ham are staples of Thanksgiving dinner, but if there's a vegetarian or vegan guest, what's there to gobble down? Rather than relying on veggies and dreary dairy-free dishes - here are some ways to make a milk- and meat-free meal marvelous:

Appetizer: Yellow Squash Soup
Squash the idea of heavy, cream based soups. The American Heart Association has crafted a recipe that serves four and is completely fat free. By replacing honey* with agave, the dish easily evolves from vegetarian to vegan.

4 cups water
2 medium yellow squash, chopped
1 small onion
1/8 tsp salt
1 tbsp agave*
1 small cucumber, thinly sliced
¼ tsp garlic powder
½ teaspoon black powder

1. In a medium pot, bring water to a boil.
2. Add squash, onion, salt and honey.
3. Reduce heat to medium, cover and simmer for 25 minutes.
4. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, add cucumbers and mash into a paste.
5. Return past to pot, add garlic and pepper and simmer over medium heat for 10-15 minutes.

Main Dish - Option 1: Sage and Pumpkin Seed Encrusted Gardein with Cranberry Cabernet Sauce
Tofu, step aside. With a combined prep and cook time of 60 minutes, make mouths water and meat-eaters envious. Twelve Gardein Chick'n Scallopini (2 packages frozen) serve six.

Cranberry Cabernet Sauce Ingredients
3 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 large shallot
4 sprigs of thyme
¼ dried cranberries
1 cup cabernet
1 cup faux chicken stock or vegetable broth
1 tbsp arrowroot
2 tbsp water
3 tbsp 'earth balance' butter
Salt and pepper to taste

Cranberry Cabernet Sauce Instructions
1. Heat the oil in a sauté pan.
2. Add the shallots and sauté for 3 minutes.
3. Add the thyme and cranberries and sauté for 2 minutes.
4. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Add the cabernet and scrape the bottom of the pan, then reduce the liquid by half.
6. Add the stock and reduce by half.
7. Mix the arrowroot with the water and add to the pan.
8. Stir well and continue to cook for 2 minutes.
9. Turn heat off and whisk in the vegan butter 1 tbsp at a time.
10. Remove thyme stems.

Cutlet Ingredients
1 tbsp minced fresh sage
1 cup toasted pumpkin seeds (without shells)
1 tsp paprika
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
unbleached white flour
2 cups unsweetened soy milk
Olive oil for sautéing
Salt and pepper to taste

Cutlet Instructions
1. In a food processor, process the sage, seeds, paprika, breadcrumbs, yeast, salt, and pepper until well incorporated.
2. Thaw the frozen Gardein scaloppini
3. Dredge each gardein™ cutlet in flour, then dip into the soy milk and then into the panko breadcrumbs
4. Sauté on each side until browned and crisp.

For something even more festive, Gardein offers a Holiday Roast, which takes about 70 minutes to cook.

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