With Thanksgiving just over two weeks away, I’ve been trying to decide what kind of post would be most appreciated by everyone. A quick check of my blog will reveal that I’m partial to pumpkin cheesecake — especially the version I made last year with the streusel topping — yum! I’ve been making pumpkin cheesecakes every year for nearly three decades, so I have lots to say on the subject.
Then there’s my favorite Thanksgiving main dish: stuffed seitan. Over the years, I’ve made it with and without a pastry crust, I’ve used a variety of different stuffings and sauces, and I’ve made it into individual servings like this:
I could give you a recipe for sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, or cranberry sauce — but you may already have your own favorite. Maybe you’d like some ideas for a Thanksgiving menu — my Party Vegan cookbook contains two of them — complete with recipes for each course.
Rather than deciding on my own, I think the best ones to ask about what to post for Thanksgiving are the people who read my blog. So, tell me, what would you most like to see in a pre-Thanksgiving blog post? The suggestion that turns up in the comments the most will be the topic of my next post.
At the same time, I’ll do my best to answer any Thanksgiving food questions you might have — so let’s call this the “Vegan Thanksgiving Hotline”!
Let’s hear your questions, comments, and suggestions about Thanksgiving. The lines are open….
I had planned to take photos of my Thanksgiving dinner, but only managed to remember in time for dessert. So here is a photo of my Pumpkin Cheesecake. I was originally going to dust the top perimeter with crystallized ginger, but at the last minute decided on chopped pecans instead. It was very yummy, although there was so much food for dinner, we didn’t even want to think of dessert until several hours later.
For dinner, I basically made the menu as posted on Vegan.com (you can see a photo of the food there — and all the recipes, too). The seitan roulade has been the centerpiece of our Thanksgiving dinner for over 20 years. I sometimes make a different stuffing for it — this year it was a veganized version of my mother’s chestnut stuffing. It was so good. The roasted sweet potato sticks were a big hit — I sprinkled them with cranberries and some of the chopped pecans I had left from garnishing the cheesecake.
I hope everyone had a very happy vegan Thanksgiving!
Am I the only one who can’t believe Thanksgiving is nearly here? If you’ve seen my Thanksgiving recipes on Vegan.com, you know my menu is pretty well set. I always make that seitan roulade, although I do change up the stuffing from year to year. My alternate main dish on the menu is a stuffed squash, which I guess is pretty much everyone’s go-to holiday meal main dish, especially for those who aren’t into seitan.
But I don’t need a holiday to stuff a squash. I do it all the time. I usually use buttercups or kabochas (when I can find them) because they have a terrific rich flavor and their shape and size are perfect for stuffing. I adore butternut squash, but there’s not much room for stuffing in their small cavity. And even though acorn squash are cute, they usually don’t have much flavor. So buttercup it is.
So that we don’t end up having “the same old stuffed squash”, I like to keep it interesting with different stuffing combinations. Sometimes I’ll make a traditional bread stuffing with celery and onion spiced with thyme, sage, and parsley. More often, I make a grain-based stuffing, usually with rice, but sometimes with millet, quinoa, or couscous. When I have some already cooked rice or another grain in the refrigerator, the stuffing comes together quickly.
To prevent the stuffing from drying out, I roast the squash first until it’s fairly soft (400 degrees F. for 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the squash). Then I stuff it and put it back in the oven for about fifteen minutes, longer if the stuffing is cold.
The stuffing in the photo was super easy and quick. In a skillet, I combined sautéed onion, chopped fresh spinach, cooked brown basmati rice, toasted almonds, and dried cranberries. I seasoned it with some sage and salt and pepper.
Since the oven was on anyway, I roasted lots of sliced carrots and a few potatoes and dinner was served. Everything was so moist and flavorful, no sauce or gravy was needed.