With All the Trimmin's: Vegetarian Holiday Recipes

If you don't eat meat or meat byproducts, come holiday time you're going to need some vegetarian holiday recipes. Here are a few.

  • cartoon turkey - fotolia
    Vegetarian holiday recipes are just the thing if you don't eat turkey or any other kind of meat.

  • cartoon turkey - fotolia

My wife Nancy, our son Matthew Ian, and I are vegetarians, and as such we've often been asked, "What do you do on Thanksgiving and Christmas if you can't eat turkey?"

Well, like everyone else, we feast...and we'd like to share our vegetarian holiday recipes with MOTHER EARTH NEWS' readers. Here they are, with all the trimmin's.

First, the main event: stuffed pumpkin, a very festive looking—and tasting—treat that can be ceremoniously "carved".

Get one or more small to medium-sized pumpkins (depending on the size of your gathering). We suggest smaller round ones that will sit up straight, are free of bruises and preferably have not been frozen (the fruit becomes somewhat mealy when it's frostbitten). Wash the pumpkins and cut the top from each as you would to make a jack-o'-lantern. Be sure to make the openings large enough so you can scoop the seeds out easily. Do so, and scrape the insides free of strings. If you wish, save the seeds for eating or planting.

Next, stuff the pumpkins full of a mixture of your favorite cooked whole grains, vegetables and seasoned dry whole-grain bread crumbs. We use brown rice, buckwheat, and millet with sauteed or steamed carrots, onions, zucchini, celery, grated ginger root and seasonings such as thyme, summer savory, and a dash of nutmeg and/or coriander.

When the cavities are full, sprinkle a little tamari (fermented soy sauce) over the stuffing and replace the lids. Coat the outside of each pumpkin lightly with unrefined oil and bake the fruit at about 350° for an hour or so, or until a fork will slide into the side easily. (Hint: If possible, roast each pumpkin on the platter from which it is to be served. Otherwise, be very careful when you transfer your finished production to the serving plate or it could fall apart.)

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