Thanksgiving Recipes For Any Day

I don't know about you, but I can't believe that Thanksgiving is here, the ski lifts are opening, and Anika is turning 11!  Anika and I have already been to two Thanksgiving feasts AND planned a birthday party.  It has been a very busy, but super fun week!

Anika's birthday party at Creative Sparks Art Studio

We are going to spend the holiday with my mom and later we will be dining at Chez Leavitt, the home of our dear friends, Rob and Erika, who are great cooks and fabulous hosts!

I wanted to share with you a few dishes that I am thinking of preparing......Perfect for Thanksgiving or any day.  Per the usual, I’m trying to keep my dishes on the tasty but healthy side.

Krisi's Famous Cauliflower Bake

Krisi The Great

Anyone who has ever enjoyed one of Krisi's meals will know to print this recipe immediately!  She doesn't often share her secrets!

This recipe is a slightly modified version of Krisi's Hungarian Cauliflower Bake.  The original recipe is rich and delish, and includes 1 cup sourcream mixed with 1 egg yolk.


  • 8 cups cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 cup finely chopped kale
  • 1/4 t. red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 1/8 t. freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 T. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • Hungarian paprika, for garnishing

Lightly oil (or spray with a light mist of oil) a large casserole dish and set aside. Place the cauliflower florets in a steamer basket and steam for 5-6 minutes or until crisp tender. Transfer the cauliflower florets to the prepared pan and set aside. Add the finely chopped kale and mix.  For the traditional Hungarian version, mix in the sourcream/egg yolk mixture.

In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, bread crumbs, salt and pepper.  Saute the seasoned breadcrumbs, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the saute pan from the heat.  Sprinkle the mixture over the cauliflower, then sprinkle the parmesan cheese, pine nuts, red pepper flakes and the Hungarian paprika over the top of the breadcrumbs.

Bake at 400 degrees for 2o minutes or until the top of the casserole is golden brown.

Serves 6-8

Mandarin and Maple Spiced Quinoa

From Oh She Glows.

I tried this recipe last year and it was a hit with my family.  Vegan, vibrant, and super healthy!  Packed with the nutty goodness of quinoa, crunchy nuts, juicy fruit, and drizzled in a light dressing of warm maple and bright citrus. only takes about 20 minutes to make!  I find a lot of great vegan recipes on this website!


  • 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 & 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup toasted almonds
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp mandarin juice (I used from the can)
  • 1/2 cup mandarin slices, from can or fresh
  • 1-2 tbsp pecans, chopped & toasted
  • 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp sea salt, to taste
  • Cinnamon + maple syrup + sea salt, to garnish before serving

Add your quinoa, water, cinnamon, nutmeg, sea salt, and mandarin juice. Bring this mixture to a boil and then reduce to low and simmer for about 12-13 minutes. Now stir in your chopped dried apricots and cranberries. Cook on low, covered, for another 5 minutes. Stir in your oil, almonds, and maple syrup. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Stir in the mandarin oranges very gently. Pour into a bowl and garnish with chopped pecans, a drizzle of maple syrup, cinnamon, and sea salt. Makes about 2.5-3 cups.

Shaved Fennel and Pomegranate Salad

I made this BEAUTIFUL salad to bring to a potluck last year.  The pomegranate seeds add a cheery color and make this simple dish very festive.


  • 2 bags mache lettuce (In the photo above I used mixed greens, but the mache is much better)
  • 1 avocado diced
  • 1 bulb fennel VERY thinly sliced
  • pomegranate seeds

Champagne Vinaigrette   Modified from Epicurious

  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons dijon Mustard
  • 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Let the shallot stand in the vinegar for 15-20 minutes.  Whisk together the mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is emulsified. Alternatively, you can combine all the ingredients in a blender or a food processor and puré until smooth.