Ideas For Thanksgiving Sides
Once you take down your Halloween door decorations, you can focus on the family, food and tradition of Thanksgiving. It's the same every year with a few subtle differences. Who you share Thanksgiving with probably won't change, but you can change the food to spice things up a bit. Turkey is standard, but playing with the sides to change up your Thanksgiving spread is fair game! Here are some ideas for Thanksgiving sides to try this year.
Though the canned cranberries we see on our tables weren't served at the first Thanksgiving, cranberries were an important part of Native American culture that the Pilgrims adopted. According to Cape Cod Cranberry Growers Association, it's one of three fruits that are native to North America, so it's a fitting fruit to serve on a very American holiday. Cranberries are extremely tart by themselves, so they need all of the sugar we put in cranberry sauce. But you don't have to serve them as sauce. Sugared cranberries are a sparkling treat for the table and it only requires three ingredients: water, sugar and cranberries. If you want something to spoon onto your plate, try cranberry fluff. It's what it sounds like: cranberries, pineapple, whipped cream, marshmallows, and sugar. Check out The Makeshift Nest's recipe for it.
There aren't many people who are willing to give up mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving, but that doesn't mean you have to serve standard mash; if you stray from tradition, it may even make Thanksgiving prep work easier! Twice baked potato casserole is a fabulous alternative that you can make ahead. If you're watching your carbs, cut your regular mashed potatoes with mashed cauliflower or mashed turnips. Either vegetable adds another layer of flavor and texture without all the calories and carbs potatoes have. If you just want to make your potatoes a little more zippy, trying playing with additions like caramelized onions or blue cheese to give them a flavor boost. It's hard to mess up mashed potatoes, so anything you try is going to be good.
Of course you need a little color for your holiday meal. That job usually is left up to the green bean casserole. But if you want to serve your guests something a little different, add collard greens to your menu. They're very easy to make -- most of the work is letting them cook for a couple hours while you tend to your other dishes. Brussels sprouts are another easy option. If you slice them up, you can saute them with a little butter over medium heat for just about five minutes or until they're tender and season them with salt and pepper. If you want Brussels sprouts with a little more heft, toss them whole with olive oil and roast them for 20 minutes, season with salt and sprinkle them with bacon bits and Parmesan cheese before serving.
You can't have Thanksgiving without a good piece of bread, but it doesn't have to be the run-of-the-mill dinner roll. If you decide to make collard greens as your vegetable, a good cornbread is the logical accompaniment. If you want fancy bread without the hassle of yeast, try dressing up refrigerator dough with cheese and herbs. All you do is cut up canned biscuit dough into small pieces; mix together two tablespoons melted butter and one cup of shredded cheddar. Then, sprinkle it with a tablespoon of chopped parsley. Stir it all together. Place pieces of dough into greased muffin tins and top with cheese mixture. Bake for 10 minutes to create cheesey pull-apart bread. If that's too rich, serve your regular dinner rolls with herbed or honey butter to make it special.
The Lakeside Collection has ideas and products to make every occasion a special occasion. Whether you're looking for a jewelry organizer to keep your bathroom tidy for holiday guests or you need ideas for what to serve at your next holiday meal, shop Lakeside for great products and inspiring ideas.