It’s Thanksgiving! It’s that time to connect with family, friends and loved ones, give thanks, celebrate each other and, of course indulge in a meal – break (Paleo) bread, so to speak.
When it comes to that ever important meal, the star of the show, your protein, turkey (traditionally), lamb, ham, beef is always delicious, satisfying and comes with a plethora of recipes and options all compliant with your Paleo lifestyle. When it comes to the sides, I see some people struggle to veer away from what has become traditional, even though in our times these are highly processed, chemically laden and preservative and additive filled concoctions. You know the ones I am talking about.
It becomes easy to overlook the bounty of fall produce, of whole real foods that are both delicious and wonderfully comforting and satisfying. Experimenting with your root vegetables may yield surprising results. Building casseroles and comfort foods with real food ingredients can taste even better for even the most skeptical of eaters. Even gravy can be satisfying and hearty when you know how to prepare it, Paleo style.
Some ideas for your table….
Root Vegetable Purée
Prep time: 15 minutes Cook time: 40 minutes Serves: 6-8
- 1 celery root (celeriac)
- 1 rutabaga
- 2 large parsnips
- 2 turnips
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
- 4 Tbsp. traditional fat of choice
- 1 ½ cups full fat coconut milk
- Peel and rinse your roots
- Cut into 1” cubes.
- Place cubes in a pot and add enough water to cover.
- Add salt and bring to a boil.
- Reduce to a simmer.
- Cook for about 20 minutes, until easily pierced with a fork and very tender.
- Drain the vegetables and place in a bowl along with the seasonings.
- In a saucepan, gently heat the fat and coconut milk until melted and pour over the root vegetables.
- Mash well with a potato masher. For a smoother consistency, place everything in a food processor/blender and purée as desired.
- Season with salt and pepper and serve.
Broccoli and Cauliflower Casserole
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 45 minutes Serves: 6-8
- 2 ½ cups broccoli florets, finely chopped
- 1 ½ cups of cauliflower, finely chopped
- 1 small onion
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup coconut milk
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Pinch nutmeg
- 4 garlic cloves, minced or 4 cloves roasted garlic, smashed
- Preheat oven to 350
- Grease a baking dish with coconut oil
- Mix broccoli, cauliflower and onion in a bowl.
- In a separate mixing bowl, combine eggs, coconut milk, garlic, nutmeg salt and pepper.
- Pour the egg/coconut milk mixture over the broccoli, cauliflower and onions and mix well.
- Transfer to prepared baking dish and bake covered for 45 minutes.
Easy Cranberry Sauce
Yield: Approximately 1 1/2 cups
- 1 12 ounce package fresh, organic cranberries (can use frozen)
- 1 orange, juiced and zested
- ½ cup honey
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp Ground ginger
- Pinch salt
- Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the berries begin to burst.
- Remove from heat and let it sit until it reaches room temperature.
- Sauce will thicken as it cools.
My Foolproof Method for Perfect Gravy
Measure out your turkey drippings and add bone broth to make 3 cups. Pour into a blender and add ½ cup full fat coconut milk, 2 tablespoons of arrowroot starch and a few fresh sage leaves. Blend until smooth (Alternately you can place all ingredients in a saucepan and blend using an immersion blender)
Pour blended mixture into a saucepan and heat on low while stirring until the arrowroot dissolves and thickens the gravy. Season to taste with salt and pepper. You may need to adjust the consistency a little by adding extra coconut milk, broth or drippings to thin out or lightly sprinkling more arrowroot starch and whisking vigorously to thicken slightly.
Serve and enjoy.
I am hoping these have provided a little inspiration to create some delicious and nutritious Thanksgiving sides. From my table to yours, have a wonderful holiday!
Michal Ofer is a wellness and digestion expert and nutrition coach. She is focused on assisting clients to take control of their health and happiness through the sustainable food and lifestyle choices that best support them. Through strengthening the body from the inside out, her clients are able to reach new heights of health, happiness and wellness. Michal obtained her Professional Training and Certificate from The Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York. She has a further studied through the University of Colorado (Boulder) and Stanford University and is a Certified 21 Day Sugar Detox Coach. Michal has also received a Bachelor’s Degree in Life Sciences and a Master Life Coach Certification. For further information and to connect with Michal visit her website at www.michalofer.com