Tag: holiday

Creating an Extra Special Thanksgiving / Holiday During the Pandemic

People. Atmosphere. Beverages. Food. That’s all we need to create a special event, holiday, or meal — but this year, we deserve to go just a little above and beyond to make it EXTRA special. By the end of this episode, you’ll have some ideas for doing just that — whether you’ll be sharing a Zoom meal with out-of-town family or having a small gathering outside and safely distanced.

(NOTE: All of the suggestions apply even if you don’t celebrate a traditional American Thanksgiving.)

My Prayer for Humans on Behalf of Animals

My hope is that we can navigate through this world with the grace and integrity of those who most need our protection.

May we have the sense of humor and liveliness of the goats; may we have the maternal instincts and protective nature of the hens and the sassiness of the roosters.

May we have the gentleness and strength of the cattle and the wisdom, humility, and serenity of the donkeys.

May we appreciate the need for community as do the sheep and choose our companions as carefully as do the rabbits.

May we have the faithfulness and commitment to family of the geese, the adaptability and affability of the ducks.

May we have the intelligence, loyalty, and affection of the pigs and the inquisitiveness, sensitivity, and playfulness of the turkeys.

My hope is that we can learn from the animals what we need to become better people.

May it be so.

Please feel free to share this text, share any of the graphics on your social media pages, or print either version of the PDF. One is titled A Prayer for Humans; one is titled A Hope for Humans.

PDF: Prayer for Humans on Behalf of Animals

PDF: Hope for Humans on Behalf of Animals

Stuffed Acorn Squash with Curried Apricot Saffron Pilaf {Recipe}

This is a gorgeous, flavorful, seasonal dish that celebrates the harvest of fall and is perfect for Thanksgiving or other autumn or winter holidays. It’s prettiest served in a large pumpkin or in individual hollowed-out baby pumpkins or acorn squash that sit on each guest’s plate. Serves 6 to 8 (Modified from the Stuffed Acorn Squash in The Vegan Table.)

INGREDIENTS – SQUASH & STUFFING

4 acorn squashes
1 sweet potato or yam, chopped and steamed
1 apple, chopped or sliced
2 scallions, white part only
1/2 cup pine nuts or almond slivers, toasted
2 tablespoons finely shredded mint leaves
1/4 cup golden raisins
2 cups Saffron Basmati Rice Pilaf (see below) or brown rice

INGREDIENTS – CURRIED APRICOT DRESSING

1/4 cup apricot preserves
1/2 cup seasoned rice vinegar or champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon mild curry powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons canola oil (optional)
Salt to taste

[Tweet “Stuffed Squash with Curried Pilaf — A Perfect No-Turkeys-Were-Harmed Thanksgiving Recipe”]

INGREDIENTS – SAFFRON BASMATIC RICE PILAF

1 yellow onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
¼ teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups brown basmati rice
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads steeped in 1/4 cup warm water
3-1/2 cups vegetable stock

DIRECTIONS – SQUASH

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

The first thing you want to do is cook your acorn squash. The idea is to soften the inside enough to eat it but not make it so soft that you lose the form of your pumpkin.

If you are using acorn squash or another smaller squash, cut it in half, scoop out the seeds (save and toast them!), and place the squash halves face down on a nonstick baking sheet lined with parchment. (No need to brush with oil.) Bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until the flesh is tender and can be pierced with a fork.

DIRECTIONS – RICE PILAF

While the squash is cooking, let’s get the rice going. In a medium saucepan, sauté the onion and garlic in the oil over medium heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the cumin, fennel seeds, pepper, and salt. Sauté for 1 minute. Add the rice and stir constantly for 2 minutes, or until the rice smells fragrant. Add the saffron water, and 3-1/2 cups vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, and cover. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 25 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed. Remove form heat and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

DIRECTIONS – DRESSING & STUFFING

For the dressing: In a blender or food processor, combine all the ingredients together and blend until thoroughly combined. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Serve or refrigerate for up to 1 week.


Putting it all together:
In a large bowl, combine the rice pilaf, cooked yam, apple, scallions, and pine nuts with the dressing. Distribute evenly among the cooked squash halves. Garnish with mint.

*For seasonal recipes perfect for Thanksgiving, check out The Vegan Table, The Joy of Vegan Baking, and The 30-Day Vegan Challenge. (Signed copies available.)

GET YOUR FREE JOYFUL VEGAN GUIDE

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