If you know me, you know that Thanksgiving is my very favorite holiday. Not because I believe we should continually celebrate the slaughter of native americans, but because it’s all about FOOD. It’s not about presents. It’s not about a christian holiday. It’s not about blowing stuff up and getting drunk (depending on your family, anyway). I start looking at recipes in September, and get all excited to try new things. Then I inevitably ignore all of those new recipes and make the same dishes over and over again because I only make them once a year. Okay, a few years ago we had a non-traditional Thanksgiving with seitan stroganoff, but for the most part, I fall into a rut. But hopefully you’re more adventurous than I, so here are some favorites that I was able to find already on the internet.
Potato Rolls from Veganomicon. They’re just a little bit different, but they won’t scare anybody. Please note that it takes awhile for the dough to rise, so make it first thing in the morning, or let it rise in the fridge overnight.
Homemade Tofurkey! I rolled mine out, put stuffing in the middle, and then rolled it up like a burrito and wrapped it in foil. This was Thanksgiving in July (because I can), when we had fall Thanksgiving, I followed the recipe and made a sold loaf, and I actually preferred it that way. The loaf was served to a first time seitan eater, and he raved about the ‘satan loaf’. (P.S. When I went to get the link, I found that all of Bryanna’s recipes are currently down on her site. I almost panicked, but luckily, I found it posted elsewhere! Phew!) If you keep it covered with foil it’ll stay warm for a long time.
Susan V’s Green Bean Casserole, which I don’t have an individual picture of, but you can see it in a Thanksgiving collage I made here. It really is the best, no one will guess that it’s vegan, and it is so easy and a lot better than the kind that calls for cream of mushroom soup. Cream of anything soup is disgusting and doesn’t belong in an actual recipe.
Bryanna’s pumpkin pie, which is soy-free so it’s good for people with an allergy or people who think tofu will give them the gays. It also has a butt-kicking spicy filling. Brian’s grandpa, who is in his 80’s so you’d think he wouldn’t like spicy, told me he loved this pie and then went on to say that the pie they serve at the VFW is too bland! I don’t know what the point of that story was, except it made me happy. Those are dandies melted on top, by the way, since I couldn’t get a can of soy whipped cream.
Now, if you’re like me, and you have to cook anything you want to eat because you’re the only vegetarian in the family, I implore you: do not kill yourself trying. Last year, we had a nice, laid back vegan Thanksgiving at our house, with just a few friends. In previous years, i’ve woken up super early, cooked like crazy until noon when people start showing up and circling the table, started freaking out because not everything was done, and not even gotten to take pictures of the food before everyone starts in. Every year I swore on my aching feet that I would never do it again. Brian’s family doesn’t care if most of the food is vegan, they don’t care if it’s homemade. No one brings a vegan cake or pie or side dish for me, so if I don’t cook, I don’t eat (my mother-in-law will make me noodles, but she’s the only one). After how nice last year was, I decided to think about what I wanted, on my favorite holiday, and I came up with a few new rules for Thanksgiving:
- I do not want to smell, see, or hear about how delicious a dead bird is. Obviously, traditional Thanksgiving with the family is over. I still have Christmas to look forward to eating sweet potatoes and grapes from the fruit platter.
- Everyone is invited to Thanksgiving, as long as they bring a vegan dish. Groceries are not free, my time is not worthless, and I am not a personal chef for anyone. Also, Thanksgiving is supposedly about sharing or some shit.
- If you have a problem with rule two, you are welcome to either a) give me $10 and i’ll make an extra dish on your behalf, or b) bring a non-vegan dish, and you can eat only that. If I can’t eat what you brought, you can’t eat what I brought.
Although let’s be honest, anyone who has a problem with rule two will just not come. Thanksgiving is gonna be a small affair this year! More food for me, right?