Thanksgiving, like for most of us foodies, is my favorite holiday. I look forward every year to the cozy warmth of coming together and the creative challenge of re-imagining the traditional Thanksgiving menu so that my table feels like an artful expression of who I am. Over the years, I have added some ginger here and a little cumin and coriander there and have ended up with some new classics that my family looks forward to every year.
I have also developed unique ways to alter recipes that fit my vision of healthy eating but also taste exquisite. While I focus my efforts on being refined-sugar free, Thanksgiving for me is a time for indulging and delighting in feasting so my recipes do not skimp on taste!
We love to start any gathering with an informal charcuterie board that your guests can gather around with their first glass of wine. Choose some of your favorite cheeses drizzled with Just Date Syrup or Just Date Pomegranate Molasses, load up the board with some of your favorite crackers, arrange some in-season fruit like apples, pears, and pomegranates in between, and perhaps finish it off with some candied walnuts or herbed Marcona almonds. If you want something a little more formal, allow us to suggest these Vegan Baked Pears with Herbed Cheese. We developed these recently in our test kitchen and fell head-over-heels for them. If you're more of a planner, the day before you can work some bread magic with this Date Zaatar Challah that could be a replacement for your rolls or shine by itself for nibbles before dinner starts.
Sides & Salads
If everyone were honest with themselves, they would admit that sides are the reason we all want to eat Thanksgiving dinner. We love focusing on seasonal vegetables and squash is one of the first ones that come to mind. Our Roasted Delicata Squash with Nduja & Ricotta gets the perfect amount of sweet caramelization from Just Date Syrup, a little heat and smokiness from the 'Nduja sausage, and the perfect sparkle of creaminess from the dollops of ricotta to pull it all together. Speaking of spicy, try our Crackling Spice Cornbread for a new twist on an old love. This recipe is designed to surprise and delight your guests, not burn up their palettes so don’t be concerned with the (fairly mild) heat level. Heat does have a place at the table though but rather as a method to char these Charred Brussels Sprouts with Dates and Walnuts. If we’re honest, Brussels one way isn’t enough for us so we add them to a salad in this Shaved Brussels Salad with Date Mustard Vinaigrette and Candied Date Syrup Walnuts. We can't forget persimmons! If you're a persimmon fan, try this strikingly beautiful Pomegranate Persimmon Salad with Toasted Walnuts. Last but not at all least, we love to round out the table with some bright pops of color with these Roasted Carrots with Pomegranate Relish and Cranberry Sauce with Ginger and Orange.
Don't forget to bring your sweet tooth! We keep it simple and work from recipes that feel homey and rustic so our guests can end their meal in a veritable grandma-hug of a dessert spread. The rich and deep flavors of date syrup are an excellent match for the combination of pecans, butter, and vanilla in our Pecan Pie. We promise that our Pumpkin Pie is even better than the original - naturally sweet coconut cream melds with rich caramelly Just Date Syrup to create the creamy pumpkin filling of your turkey-day dreams. We would be remiss if we didn’t add an apple option so we developed this Perfect and Simple Apple Streusel that is so dang easy and also so impressive it's practically unfair. Top any of these off with homemade whipped cream with Just Date Syrup and you and your guests will be happily rolling off your seats in no time.
From all of us at Just Date, we hope you find yourself full of joy and good food this Thanksgiving and enjoy the sweet life!