vegan thanksgiving for two

This year we decided to keep our Thanksgiving meal simple with 3 dishes: Wild Rice Stuffed Winter Squash, Curried Carrot Almond Soup, and a Simple Mixed Greens Salad. By incorporating a few of the same ingredients into all of the dishes, we were able to easily pair one wine with our entire dinner while maintaining the unique flavors of each dish.

The Curried Carrot Almond Soup is courtesy of Gourmet magazine:

get the recipe here

The next time I make this soup I will make a few alterations, including less ginger and much less water. We were hoping for a creamier consistency, which could be easily achieved by using 4 cups of Almond Milk and no water.

The Wild Rice and Stuffed Squash was my husband's own variation on several different recipes. The combination of savory and sweet flavors and the balance of so many different textures came together for the perfect autumn dish. We had a little bit of extra filling, which we had for lunch the following day...who says you need turkey sandwiches to enjoy Thanksgiving left overs?

Wild Rice Stuffed Winter Squash

2 acorn squash, halved and seeded
1/4 cup uncooked wild rice (we used the kind in a box with a seasoning packet)
1 1/3 cups water
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbs Blackstrap molasses
2 stalks of celery, sliced
handful of dried fruit (we used raisins, prunes, dried apples, apricots, and pears)
handful of sliced almonds, toasted
handful of chopped onion

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Sprinkle cut side of squash with cinnamon and nutmeg.
Arrange squash cut side down in a shallow baking dish lined with water.
Bake for about 30 minutes.

Add rice, seasoning packet, and water to a saucepan.
Once the rice has absorbed some of the water, add the remaining ingredients.
Continue cooking the rice as instructed on the packaging.

To serve, remove squash from oven and spoon the rice mixture into each squash cavity. Bon Appetit!

For our salad, we topped our mixed greens with toasted almonds and the same dried fruit we used in the squash.

We were so happy with this meal that I plan to serve it when my (non-veg) dad visits us for Christmas. I know he'll love it too, which gives us a great opportunity to illustrate how delicious vegan eating can be! I am thankful to have choices about what I put into my body and to have a partner who is always supportive and willing to try new things in the kitchen. Although this isn't the case for all of us, and wasn't always the case for me, introducing even one animal free dish into your family's holiday meals can have an impact on their perception of vegan food and get them thinking about what they're putting on their plate.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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