Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Research and Development: Thanksgiving 2012

I've been doing my research for The Big Day, guys!

These are both wonderful books.  I love Holly Garrison's The Thanksgiving Cookbook, which I took out from my library in August (early R&D!) then purchased (used, for a penny on Amazon!) because I love it so much.  I love her storying, her tone, the early 1990's vibe, I could go on and on.  I WON Meatless Celebrations, which I just got today in the mail!  I can already tell it's amazing.  Apple Rosemary Walnut Pie, anyone?

Because I live in New Jersey (though I work in Philly) I only photographed South Jersey restaurants due to logistics. I came in a very respectable third place in the Philadelphia Inquirer's Vegetarian Awareness Month Photo Contest 
and I won two cookbooks...

OH YEAH.  They work for me, now!

And work they shall...
CSA Week #24 (11/7/12): 
Rutabaga (does anyone especially dig this?), Carrots, Cauliflower, Kohlrabi, TONS of Sweets, Beets, Turnips, Spinach, Arugula and Spicy Mix

Pa came down this past weekend for a practice T-day visit :-)
OH YEAH.  The Vegan Cowboys in their element.

And I made a practice round of Soft and Hard Gruyere from the hottest new vegan cookbook on the market, Artisan Vegan Cheese!

With a little help from my old friend, Sandor.  
He has a new book out (an updated version of mine) you guys should check it out!

 Quinoa Rejuvelac. SO FUN.

 Soft Gruyere (above and below).
 Soft Gruyere is damn delicious!

Let's not talk about the Hard Gruyere yet, OK? :-)

And, I picked up my very last CSA box of the season tonight :-(
CSA Week #25 (11/14/12):
Cabbage (beautiful!), Cauliflower, Fennel, Parsley, Beets (in sink), Arugula (in the bowl in the sink), Carrots (oh yeah!), Spinach, Sweets, Daikon (behind the carrots).

Farewell, Honey Brook Farm! See you next season!

Only Sweet Potato Man can absorb the sadness of the next six months with no CSA:

Sweet Potato Man.  
He's restin' up for The Big Day, so don't wake him!

What am I making for The Big Day this year?  I don't know yet, I need to do more R&D. (Please tell my husband that cookbooks all over the house, fermented grains in jars and three different kinds of sugar on the counter=R&D).

I do know what I did last year, and it went something like this:

What are you guys making this year?  

*Update: OMG, guys!! After getting like three hours of sleep last night after I wrote this, when I was woken up this morning by the highly inefficient and super loud town leaf vacuum truck (that was on my small street for at least an hour from 6-7 a.m.) I thought, THANKSGIVING PIZZA. Homemade Organic Yeast Dough, Sweet Potato Puree Sauce (I'll make it with garlic, olive oil, onions, rosemary), Slices of Seitan "Turkey," like, perchance, Gobbler Slices or Isa's Roast?! Dollops of Homemade Vegan Gruyere Cheese, Sage Cornbread Dressing. Mushroom Gravy drizzled over everything!  Dollops of cranberry sauce? Some sauteed greens? Any and all feast elements can top this thing.  

Tasteful amounts of everything, of course.   
R&D BABY, R&D.   

I'm thinking of doing the T-day Pizza with The Big Day leftovers instead of the traditional T-day sandwich.  I am also thinking I may do it with the tester items I'm making now...

Sweet Potato Man must have visited me in my dreams last night!  Thank you, Sweet Potato Man!


  1. You have to make the fettucine alfredo with gruyere and mushrooms. It is incredible!!!

  2. May I ask, is the cheese cookbook mostly nut cheeses? I've seen lots of great reviews!! I hate the soy taste of most non-dairy items. Thanks!

    1. Hi Sara! Yes, it seems to be mostly nut cheeses, and some recipes do use non-dairy yogurt (but you can use almond yogurt and not soy yogurt, I'm guessing!).

      A great way to see if you would like the book is to click the "look inside" feature on amazon. There are a ton of recipes (including the Soft Gruyere one I made) to access for free there, enough to last you a long time!

      Here's a link:

  3. I did the look inside feature. Everything pointed towards nut cheeses but I wanted to check with someone that has the book to make sure it was mostly nut cheeses before buying (i'm super-picky with what I buy... being a librarian I'm used to browsing through books before purchasing... of course no libraries in my state own the book).

    Thanks for the response!

  4. I want to talk about The Thanksgiving Pizza! Anyone?

  5. Pizza on Thanksgiving???? Awesome! I can't wait to see how it goes! I am also so, so curious about two things: Rejuvelac.... uh... what is it?? AND that cheese! How I wish I could taste it!

    1. That's my girl, Tracy! I knew SOMEONE had to want to talk about pizza on Thanksgiving! :-)

      Rejuvelac is the delicious fermented tonic made from sprouted and then fermented grains. It's SUPER easy to make. Some people just drink it to aid with digestion but you can also use it as a fermented starter for nut cheeses and other things. I used one cup of quinoa (you can use any grain) and cover with enough water to sprout, then drain, then divide and recover with water and ferment at room temp. Specific directions and the recipe are in the "look inside" feature of the Artisan Cheese book (half of it is online for free), or you can just google "rejuvelac" for recipes, too.

      The cheese tastes great, I love fermented nut cheeses. If you've ever had a cashew sauce made with miso and/or nutritional yeast, just imagine that fermented into a cheese. YUM. Again, so much of that book is free online, you should totally try it.


  6. Congrats on winning those books! Yay, Dawn. Your winning planets must be aligned this month.

    I am dying to get the Artisan Cheese cookbook. Make note to self (as if I don't won enough cookbook already). Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. Thanks! Unicorn tears, SUV gas and babysitting cash were definitely involved ;-)

      You can see most of the Artisan Cheese book for free on Amazon! Really it seems almost all the cheese recipes (and rejuvelac recipe) are in that "look inside" feature. The other half of the book is comprised of recipes that use the various cheeses, but not more cheese recipes themselves.

      Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

  7. Very envious of your abundance of produce! It puts the bottom shelf of my fridge to shame. I need to snag a copy of Meatless Celebrations before the big day - I've got dessert covered, but it's the side dishes I'm worried about.

    1. Meatless Celebrations is a fun one! Check it out!

  8. That is the most hilarious/disturbing sweet potato I have ever seen! Not sure if I can ever look at the tubers the same way again now...

    Have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

    1. I was very surprised to find him in my CSA box! But, he did come through the dream catcher with a very good idea, so, it all worked out.