Loud and Clear: 2 ways to cook during the holidays without using meat

December 5, 2013
Nicole Rosmarino of Centennial heard a lot of Thanksgiving recipes on Colorado Public Radio leading up to the holiday but couldn't help but notice most of the recipes required meat.
Not a good thing, Rosmarino told CPR. 
"I'm considering whether your name should be 'Carnivore Public Radio'," Rosmarino wrote in an email. 
Photo: Chef Rachel Kelsey of WaterCourse restaurant in Denver(Photo: Courtesy of Rachel Kesley)
Rachel Kesley is the chef at WaterCourse Foods, a vegetarian restaurant in the Uptown neighborhood of Denver.
Chef Rachel Kesley shares the listener's frustration.
"Thanksgiving was never my favorite holiday," Kesley said.  "Because the holiday revolves so much around meat."
Below are two meatless holiday recipes from Kesley for others, like Rosmarino, looking for creative alternatives:
Roasted Brussles Sprouts
  • 1 lb Brussels Sprouts, cleaned and halved
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup vegetable stock (no sodium)
  • 1 drop liquid smoke
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance (or any vegan butter substitute)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350 coat Brussels sprouts with wine stock and liquid smoke evenly. Toss in shallots and garlic then place on a baking sheet. Disperse vegan butter evenly and place herbs on top. Roast for 10-15 minutes or until desired tenderness is achieved.
Stuffed Acorn Squash
  • 4 acorn squash halved and de-seeded
  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance
  • 1 quart vegetable stock (no sodium)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons white wine
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place all ingredients into a baking dish and cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes. Check every once in a while to insure the liquid in the bottom of the pain has not evaporated. If it’s getting too low, add more stock. Squash should be tender, but not mushy. 
Pull from the oven, uncover and cool.
Wild Rice Filling
  • 2 cups wild rice
  • 3.25 cups vegetable stock (no sodium)
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • Cook the above ingredients until rice is done. Set aside and cool.
  • 1 leek, halved, sliced and cleaned
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 1 carrot diced
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberry
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 cups kale, chiffonade
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts toasted and crushed
Sautee leek, carrot and garlic in oil until translucent. Add salt and pepper, cranberry, nutritional yeast and spices. 
De-glaze with white wine and lemon juice. Adding 2 tablespoons of earth balance. Take off the heat and cool down mixture and toss with the wild rice. Once everything is cool, stuff the squash halves until full. To re-heat, place stuffed squash in a baking dish, putting a small amount of water in the bottom of the dish and a small amount of butter on top of the filled squash. 
Cover with foil and Bake at 300 degrees until hot in the middle (30-40 minutes). When finished, take out and sprinkle the top with toasted hazelnuts.