My First Vegan Thanksgiving

Lifestyle changes can be difficult, especially so when they go against societal norms. It’s important, however, to remind ourselves of the reasons for which we make those changes, and attempt to not allow the criticisms of others to deter us in our growth or impede our goals. This is something I have struggled with quite a bit recently with my decision to become vegan after years of being vegetarian. Family members, friends and even strangers seem to insist upon making their uneasiness or even blatant disdain for being vegan known; as if my choice to become vegan is a personal affront to them. Well, get this, my choice is mine! I have my reasons for making it, none of which have anything to do with a desire to make those around me uneasy or annoyed. I made it for my health, and a desire to help change the world into a kinder and more humane place. 

Confronted with information, that I had either previously not been exposed to or ignored, as given to me by a friend, I decided that I was willing to give up certain aspects of my diet and embrace a purely plant based diet. 

So with that decision, made back in July, I embarked today on my first ever vegan Thanksgiving. A truly interesting and enlightening experience, quite honestly. To be faced with a holiday that in itself is known as “turkey day”, with self imposed restrictions on the very iconic main staple of the day, was a bit scary. The mocking of my friends was one thing, but facing the idea that there might be family recipes that I could not enjoy was really what had me going “oh no! What do I do?” 

Thankfully, as this is Thanksgiving ;), most of my most loved dishes are vegetable ones! Hurray! I was able to help my 90 year old grandmother change a few recipes slightly to accommodate my choices. Like using olive oil to bread artichoke hearts instead of egg.

All that is needed is information on how to make clever substitutions and you can enjoy a lot of the same types of foods that you used to love! Like using vegetable stock and vegan butter spread to make stuffing instead of turkey stock and butter.

Or air frying Brussel Sprouts that have been tossed in lemon and olive oil instead of sautéing them with bacon.

The other saving grace of the day was, Jennifer Rose Rossano’s Cookbook, “Living Crazy Healthy” (order HERE)! I was able to make some delicious dishes from both the cookbook and her website. My favorite, was the CAULIFLOWER MASH, which was extremely simple to make, but unbelievably yummy!

But also, the ROASTED RADISHES

the CLASSIC ITALIAN VEGAN STUFFED MUSHROOMS

& even dessert with MAPLE CORN MUFFINS WITH PUMPKIN SPICE CASHEW CREAM FILLING

 

Let’s be real, with these scrumptious options, anyone could be vegan!!!! Think about it, is turkey really even that good? Usually dry, and have you ever actually come in contact with a raw dead bird. Gross!!!!!!!

I proudly consider my first vegan Thanksgiving an utter success! Not only did I succeed in staying strong and keeping to my chosen lifestyle change, but I was able to create or recreate the recipes of others, that were not only edible, but super tasty as well! And no birds had to die which is an even better outcome!