Some of the best sources of plant-based protein are also some of the most versatile when it comes to cooking delicious, healthy food. If you’re looking to move more toward a plant-based diet, nuts, seeds and legumes will surely be your friends….and for good reason! They’re less expensive than meat, highly nutritious (low in fat, no cholesterol, and high in fiber, folate, potassium, iron and magnesium), and can actually be very “meaty” in texture. Note: most dried beans and legumes need to be soaked prior to cooking. Here’s how.
Hanukkah’s best-known food—the beloved potato latke (a.k.a. fried potato pancake)—is also a relatively recent addition to the festival-of-light festivities. Potatoes actually became part of the recipe in the mid-19th century, replacing pancakes made of cheese (usually from goats or sheep). We’ve included a cheese latke recipe here, along with other tempting latke varieties (some are vegan-friendly and some are just plain fun). HAPPY HANUKKAH!
Vegans often get the short end of the Thanksgiving stick. Their hosts may forget that chicken stock and eggs aren’t vegan, and they’re almost always left without dessert, save some fruit.
This year, if we have our say, no vegan will be left behind! Follow a few simple swaps to create an amazing Thanksgiving that will please every one of your guests, no matter their eating style.
By the way…don’t feel like you need to make the entire menu vegan for a single guest. Most vegans will be happy to have a few options. For guests with dietary restrictions, it’s nice to make sure they have at least one salad and two side dish options. And if you’re still confused about serving a vegan at your Thanksgiving, just ask. Most will be happy to answer any questions, and even point you in the right direction with recipes.
Vegan Thanksgiving Ideas
Kick the festivities off right with a few options for your vegan friends. It doesn’t have to be fancy, or in the case of an easy-to-assemble vegan cheese plate…it can be!
* Vegan cheese plate: Bring together some Miyoko’s Creamery or Treeline tree nut cheeses, crackers from Simple Mills, a nice fig jam, a few grapes, and mixed organic nuts from our bulk department for a beautiful cheese plate. This is all about the presentation…look here for inspiration.
* Dips: We’ve got a whole selection of vegan spreads and dips: Ithaca Hummus, Cedars Organic Hummus, Hope Hummus, or any of the fresh dips from our Deli case. Or try this vegan spinach & kale dip, a gorgeous, green, cheesy, melty dip that’s a real crowd pleaser.
Many sides can be made vegan without missing a beat (and your guests won’t miss the eggs/dairy!). Check out our Catering Menu for a nice selection (Lemon Cranberry Wild Rice Salad, Quinoa Walnut Butternut Squash Salad, Vegan Herb Stuffing/Vegan Gravy, to name just a few), and let us do the work. Or consider cooking these crowd-pleasing vegan sides:
Harvest-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Mark Bittman’s Green Mashed Potatoes
Maple Glazed Sweet Potatoes
Now that the side dishes are covered, let’s make sure none of your vegan friends are left out when it comes to the entree. You can opt for alternative entrees like stuffed squash, stuffed mushrooms, and vegan loaves (Chef John’s Mushroom Walnut Loaf, for example, is is one of the many delicious Thanksgiving options available on our Catering Menu. Or try this Vegan Mushroom Gravy Pie). Get close to the real deal with this array of festive meat alternatives (available in our freezer section) that will make every vegan feel part of the holiday. Choose from:
- Tofurky Ham, Veggie Roast with Wild Rice Stuffing and Holiday Gravy
- Field Roast Celebration Roast
- Quorn Turk’y Roast
- Gardein Turk’y Cutlets
- Tofurky Vegan Gravy
This is one area where you can definitely please all your guests simultaneously…no one even needs to know the care you’ve taken to make your desserts vegan. One bite of any of these treats and they will be beyond satisfied.
If you the have time/desire to prepare dessert yourself, check out the simple recipe for Chocolate Cranberry Nut Bark recipe in our Celebrate the Season Thanksgiving Brochure, available here or in the store. Or any of these vegan goodies will not let you down:
- Vegan Mexican Chocolate Pie
- Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
- Vegan Apple Crumble Tart with Salted Caramel
- Pumpkin-and-Pecan Fudge
If you want to grab something quick and sweet for your own or someone else’s Thanksgiving feast, we’ve got some amazing sweets right here in the store:
- Hail Merry Tarts (located in the grab and go case by the Deli)
- Vegan ice cream from Van Leeuwen, So Delicious, Luna & Larry’s and more
- Special order: Rosie’s homemade Vegan Blackout Cake or Chef John’s creamy Pumpkin Pie
Wishing you and all your friends and family an amazing Thanksgiving. With or without the turkey!
You want to give your children Halloween treats they’ll love, but without all the ghoulish stuff—GMOs, artificial flavors and colors, high fructose corn syrup—you avoid all other times of year. While healthier packaged treats are more readily available than ever (come into the store for a great selection of Rising Tide-approved Halloween treats), don’t underestimate the fun (and ease!) of creating homemade treats made with wholesome, organic/non-GMO ingredients. Whether you’re hosting a party, bringing snacks into a child’s classroom, or simply want to control a fraction of your child’s Halloween booty, get some inspiration for healthy Halloween recipes here.
DIY PROBIOTIC-RICH FERMENTED FOODS AT HOME
Nourish your gut—naturally. Brimming with probiotics, tangy lacto-fermented veggies are a delicious way to maintain a balanced microbiome and healthy digestive system. Plus, they’re surprisingly easy to make at home. Follow these simple recommendations for the best results.
1. Get the right gear.
No need to buy a fancy fermentation set. All you need to get started is a wide-mouth mason jar, wooden spoon and some sort of weight to keep the veggies submerged in brine (a cabbage or apple core or even a smaller mason jar resting on top of your ferments will do the trick). Run your jars through the dishwasher before using.
2. Choose organic.
Starting with clean, pesticide-free produce will guarantee a better outcome. Select high-quality organic veggies from your garden, or shop for them in Rising Tide’s 100 percent organic produce department! Not convinced? (In honor of September being Organic Month, here are some more reasons why it’s more important than ever to buy organic.)
3. Wash veggies well.
Wash produce carefully under cold water and make sure to remove all dirt and debris before fermentation, as this could affect the taste of the final product. After washing, slice your produce in uniform pieces for even ripening.
4. Use purified water.
Always use distilled or purified water for your brine. Tap water contains chlorine, and often fluoride, which can disturb the growth of good bacteria.
5. Don’t skimp on the salt.
Along with adding flavor and creating a crispier texture to your veggies, salt kills harmful bacteria and prevents mold during the fermentation process. Be sure to use the exact amount that the recipe calls for. Opt for high-quality Himalayan or sea salt instead of table salt.
6. Give veggies time to ripen.
Cover your jar with an airtight lid, and give the fermentation process at least a week on your kitchen counter before checking. You’ll know they’re ready when you see bubbles forming in the brine and the mixture omits a sour, though not unpleasant, odor. If you see mold on top, simply scrape it off with a wooden spoon and discard. Shaking the mixture once a day; this helps inhibit mold growth. It’s a good idea to taste the product to determine if it could use a few more days to culture. If your veggies smell rotten, toss them and try again.
7. Store your finished product in the fridge.
Finally, it’s time to move your veggies to a refrigerator or cellar. Cold temperatures slow the growth of healthy bacteria, so the flavor of ferment will continue to deepen and evolve. Your veggies will keep in cold storage for up to a year.
Start your own fermentation adventure. Check out a bunch of make-at-home fermentation recipes here.
Fermented foods—resurging in popularity because of their ability to improve digestive health, boost immunity and fight inflammation—contain beneficial bacteria created through a process called lacto-fermentation. You can make your own fermented foods at home in a few simple steps—and enjoy them in a multitude of dishes all year long.
(Note: If you don’t have time to DIY, we stock a diverse and exciting variety of the best fermented products on the market right here at Rising Tide. Check the refrigerated case at the back of the store for some of our favorites, or ask a staff member for guidance.)
Chocolate Sauerkraut Cake
Post a pic—and tag us—-if this inspires you to ferment at home!