Every year as Thanksgiving gets closer I look forward to trying out new ways to serve cranberry sauce. This year I chose a cranberry sauce flavored with cinnamon and maple syrup. I also added a little brown sugar instead of white sugar to give it a little something different. The sauce turned out excellent and the flavors of maple and cinnamon were delicious together! I served this alongside my Thanksgiving staple, Gingered Cranberry Sauce, so I got a chance to compare and contrast. I liked both a lot and they each complimented the turkey perfectly.
This recipe is based on the American Chinese food classic: egg fried rice. Now instead of ordering take-out I can whip up a batch of fried rice on the cheap and in no time at all. This recipe is probably a lot healthier compared to the fried rice at Chinese restaurants. You can give the rice a boost by adding more veggies like bean sprouts, green onion, or baby corn. I had some leftover Korean BBQ Chicken and served it with the rice which was very tasty! You can also add a protein to the rice (like chicken, tofu or pork) to make it more of a main course too.
To go with the batch of Veggie Dumplings, I wanted to make the perfect sauce to go with them. I read about Momos and how they are frequently paired with a tomato based sauce so I settled on a sweet and savory chutney. I loved the flavor of this sauce. The combination of spices and herbs with the acid from the lime and apple cider vinegar was so delicious. The best part was that it didn’t take long to make this and most of the ingredients I already had on hand. It made me want to double the recipe and just have it as a snack by itself!
I love baked potato fries and I actually prefer them over the deep fried kind. They’re easy to prepare and can be seasoned with a seemingly endless amount of spices. These fries are seasoned with smoky ground chipotle pepper, sea salt, and garlic powder. I like to get the fries pretty brown and crispy so I turn up the heat at the end of cooking to get that effect. The end result is a soft interior with a golden crispiness on the exterior. I use a handy tool that cuts the potatoes into a fry shape but making wedges by hand would work fine too. As a healthier alternative you could easily substitute russet potatoes for sweet potatoes or yams with this recipe.
I was looking for a tasty snack–something to munch on during the day that had a good amount of filling protein but also packed with flavor. I came across a recipe for baked chickpeas and was intrigued because I always liked them in stews and soups but had never tried them on their own. The chickpeas are lightly tossed with olive oil, rolled in a spice blend, and baked until they become dry and crispy. They remind me a little of popcorn but so much healthier and tastier! The spice blend can be adjusted to your own tastes, whether you want it saltier, sweeter, or spicier. I preferred the spicy and salty, but I plan to experiment more and see what I like best.
If I were to have any season all year I would have it be Fall. Unfortunately, it is now January (my least favorite month) and there’s no way to bring fall back outside. However, I can make food that reminds me of my favorite season and what could recall that season better than butternut squash? Butternut squash is a tasty snack when it is sliced very thin and roasted until just browned and crispy. The slices of squash are quickly boiled, patted dry and tossed with olive oil and sage in a bowl. Then they are baked in the oven for about 20 minutes, so this is a great recipe to prepare if you’re short on time for dinner.
Here are a few of my favorite Thanksgiving side dishes and main courses. Thanksgiving is the perfect holiday to get creative with a lot of different dishes!
When I came across the recipe for corn esquites salad I took one look at it and knew I had to give it a try. This salad is basically Mexican elote which is roasted corn on the cob seasoned with cayenne, butter, mayonnaise, and cotija cheese. The corn in this recipe is cut off the cob and pan roasted until the kernels char and caramelize. Then the corn is mixed with the elote ingredients, garlic, lime, jalapeno, and cilantro. I decided to kick it up a notch and add sliced tomatoes and avocado to the salad. It was so tasty! The combination of ingredients was sweet and spicy from the corn and jalapenos yet creamy and tangy from the lime juice and cotija cheese. It ended up being the perfect topping for tacos!
Tabouleh is a Mediterranean salad made with fresh herbs, tomatoes, lemon juice and Bulgur wheat. It’s a traditional side dish in Lebanese cooking and it makes a perfect partner for hummus and pita. Lebanese recipes don’t use a lot of the bulgur wheat, so I didn’t really make it in the most traditional way as I wanted a more hearty side dish. If you want to make it more traditional, just use half of the bulgur wheat and think of it more as a garnish than as a main part of the salad. I loved the flavor of the fresh herbs, tomatoes, garlic and lemon juice all mixed together. It tasted great with the hummus, so I will definitely make these again sometime!
Hummus is one of those foods that is easy to pick up at a grocery store and not really give it a second thought. That’s what I did for a long time until I decided to explore Lebanese food a little more. Years ago, my family would get take-out from a local Lebanese deli and since then I have loved that food. Since I had been craving Lebanese food I decided to make my own version of the deli’s menu.
Hummus is so simple; I couldn’t believe I had never made it before! All you need is a blender or food processor, 2 cans of chickpeas, tahini, garlic and lemon juice. Tahini is just a paste of ground sesame seeds and can be found at asian stores or whole foods. Now that I have made hummus it would be tough to go back to store-bought!