A twist on Thanksgiving recipes | PostIndependent.com

A twist on Thanksgiving recipes

The holidays are so delicious not only because of the food but the company you keep that day. Stuffing your face with the most delicious bites and eating again and again throughout the day. When I was growing up I realized that I celebrated with a different palate from most people. My mother never knew what the American traditional spread was, so what we got was what the ingredients made. You will think about making these the day after Thanksgiving, and next year you will put a twist into your sides like you never have before. Not only am I going to share those but also some quick easy things you can put together for all of those upcoming parties you will now be attending.

Turmeric Potato Enchiladas with Salsa Verde

Think about those mashed potatoes and how you can crank the flavor up and re-use them in a very different format.

2 cups mashed potatoes (of course leftovers)

1 tablespoon turmeric zest or 1 teaspoon dry turmeric

½ cup frozen peas

¼ cup diced yellow onions

2 tablespoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

12 corn tortillas

In a saucepan, place olive oil, garlic, onion and turmeric and cook over medium heat for seven minutes. Then stir in the mashed potatoes and peas for 1-2 minutes. Set aside.

Heat up corn tortillas for 10 seconds in the microwave or heat them up in a skillet over high heat for 10 seconds to soften the tortilla. Then fill each with ¼ cup of potato mix and roll up. Place in a casserole dish until you are done assembling them all.

Salsa Verde

10 tomatillos

2 jalapenos, rough chop

1 small shallot, rough chop

2 garlic cloves

1/8 cup cilantro

1/8 cup basil

1 lime juice

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cumin

Place all ingredients in a blender for one minute. Pour desired amount over the rolled enchiladas.

Sprinkle your favorite cheese(s) on top and place in oven at 350 degrees for 12 minutes.

Butternut Squash Mole with Turkey

Your turkey can still be turned into sandwiches, heated up for tacos with your salsas, made into turkey chili or stuffed in enchiladas instead of or with the potatoes. But here is a mole you will die for with definitely a twist.

4 cups diced butternut squash

½ cup diced yellow onion

1 celery stalk, diced

1 carrot, peeled and diced

3 garlic cloves, chopped

2 tablespoons chopped ginger

2 chile de arbol

3 chile pasilla

3 chipotles

1 cup walnuts

¼ cup grape seed oil

6 cups vegetable stock

In a pot place grape seed oil over medium heat with onion, celery, carrot, garlic and ginger for 10 minutes, stirring every minute or so. Add butternut squash, chiles and walnuts, stir every few minutes for another 10 minutes. Add stock and turn down to low and cover for 20 minutes.

Blend. Season with salt.

Pour over your pulled, sliced turkey or even your enchiladas.

Have you thought of not only having cranberry sauce for your Thanksgiving dinner but creating a spicy sauce that you can eat with chocolate or use in a cocktail?

Spicy Cranberry Spritzer

Makes 6-8 servings

1 cup cranberry sauce (your leftovers, so make extra)

1 tablespoon minced ginger

1 serrano, sliced

2 tablespoons agave or honey

Place ginger, serrano and honey into shaker and muddle. Pour cranberry sauce in the shaker with 5 ice cubes and shake 15 times.

Fill 8 6-ounce glasses with crushed ice and 1 ounce of rum, vodka, tequila or whiskey (or not), then strain the sauce mix to fill each cup halfway up. Finish the cocktail with soda water. My favorite is La Croix Cherry Lime.


8 thyme sprigs

16 dried cranberries

Grab the sprigs and skewer two dried cranberries into the spritzer. You can soak them for a few hours in the liquor you are using so they plump up and enhance the flavor.

Stuffing Stuffed Poblanos

6 poblanos, fire roasted, peeled and seeds removed

1 ½ cup stuffing (leftovers)

1 cup queso fresco

To fire roast peppers place them over open flame or high heat in your oven. Remove skin, seeds and stem. Stuff them with your leftover stuffing and roll them into a casserole dish.

Place them in the oven with the queso fresco sprinkled on top. Serve with any sauce you want.

Chimichurri Sauce

I know most people don’t think to serve anything but gravy over the holidays, but you should try giving them some of the sauces I shared with you. They can mix and match and see what they find appealing.

This sauce is so refreshing with so much bite, but yet you can use it for at least a few days after.

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

½ cup finely chopped parsley (TIP: use a fork to remove the leaves from the stem. Hold the bunch with one hand and yank with the fork with the other.)

¼ cup finely chopped garlic

1 lime, zest and juice

optional: 3 tablespoon chili flakes

Mix in a bowl and serve.

This is also a great marinade, dipping sauce and finishing sauce. Use it to make turkey tacos by just sprinkling on top or cooking the turkey in it.


• Stuff a whole yellow onion into your turkey when you are baking it to keep it moist while it cooks.

• Try grilling your carrots instead of braising them to give everyone a nice smoky flavor. Grilled green beans are amazing, too.

• Add flavor to your butters by adding herbs, lemons or spicy peppers. You only have to whip them while at room temperature and refrigerate them.

• Gravy shouldn’t just be gravy. You can add herbs such as thyme, rosemary and sage to add a floral taste, but you can also make it peppery or add truffle oil to highlight every bite.

• To hold stuffing the next day, add an egg. Form balls and make a soup with vegetables and a delicious broth. Add the stuffing balls to it and you have your own version of matzo ball soup.

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