So Here we are..November already and as fast as Christmas decorations comes up everywhere in stores and holiday music starts to surround us…Thanksgiving will be here in no time.  This is the weekly first part series of Ideas of side dishes for the next 3 weeks in time to add to your repertoire for Thanksgiving.

The recipes below might not be totally traditional but can add a little something else or different along with the traditional, most importantly they are whole, clean and healthy.

Note: can be made in advance and put together at the last minute.

Side Salad Dish 1 –Roasted Whole Organic carrots, avocado and cumin lemon vinaigrette

Ingredients- 4-6 servings

  • 2 to 3 bunches (depending on size) whole organic carrots, peeled
  • 1 avocado, peeled, cored and sliced
  • small leaf greens for presentation
  • Optional goat cheese or feta cheese crumbles
  • Fine Sea salt to taste
  • Olive Oil
  • Cumin powder

Lemon cumin vinaigrette

  • Juice of 2 lemons about ¼ cup
  • ½ tsp of salt & ½ tsp of white pepper
  • 1 tsp of cumin seeds toasted,
  • ½ cup Olive oil

Preheat your oven to 400F. Arrange baking paper on a large cookie sheet. Toss the whole peeled carrots with cumin powder, salt and olive oil and arrange in one layer on the cookie sheet. Place in the oven and roast until tender and slightly caramelized 20-25 minutes.. Remove, cool and reserve.

Place the lemon juice in screw top jar with the salt and pepper and cumin seeds..shake well to blend. Add the Olive oil and shake well until emulsified. Taste and adjust the seasoning depending on the acidity of the lemon, you may add a little more salt or Olive oil.

To assemble, Place the cooled roasted carrots on a platter, disperse the avocado slices over, along with the green leaves and top with crumble cheese of choice if desired. Pour the lemon cumin vinaigrette upon ready to serve.

Side Dish Salad 2- Roasted Pears with Blue cheese, candied nuts over Salad greens, Balsamic vinaigretteIMG_1834

Ingredients 4-6 servings

  • 2-3 pears, halved, cored then quartered, but not peeled
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup of Gorgonzola dolce Cheese
  • 1- tbsp of brown sugar
  • Salad Greens of your choice; I like to use a combination of baby arugula which are mildly peppery and sweet baby lettuce greens

For candied walnuts

  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • ¼ cup superfine white sugar

Simple Balsamic vinaigrette

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¾ cup Extra virgin Olive Oil
  • ½ tsp of fine sea salt
  • ½ tsp of freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Arrange baking paper on a large cookie sheet. Line the pears, cut sides up and Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with brown sugar. Strip the leaves from the thyme branches and sprinkle over the pears.

Put the baking sheet in the oven and bake 20-25 minutes until the pears are tenders.

Remove the baking sheet from the oven and spoon some gorgonzola cheese in the pear cavitys, return the pears to the oven and roast the cheese is soft, a couple of minutes. Keep Warm. or quickly reheat the pears in a warm oven for a few minutes…so the cheese is slightly runny.

Meanwhile, in a heavy bottom skillet, toast the nuts until golden brown and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Remove and let cool enough to chop. In that same pan place the sugar, drizzle a bit of cold water and melt over medium low heat without stirring until the color is a medium amber (about 5-7min) watch carefully as the caramel darkens quickly, add the walnuts to the pan, quickly stirring and coating each piece with the sugar mixture.

As soon as the walnuts are coated with the sugar mixture, spread them out on a rimmed baking sheet, lined either with a Silpat non-stick mat, or parchment paper. Use two forks to separate the walnuts from each other, working very quickly. Let cool before touching.

For the balsamic vinaigrette;

Pour the vinegar in a mason jar and add the salt and pepper, close lid and shake well for the salt to dissolve well. Add the olive oil and shake to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning. You can keep the vinaigrette for a week in the fridge.

To Assemble, Toss the greens with a few tablespoons of the balsamic vinaigrette to coat..Place on a large serving platter, top with the warm pears and candied walnuts and serve.




Leave a Reply