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Plastic-free Thanksgiving: Pumpkin Pecan Risotto, Brussels Sprouts, Winter Salad

Posted By Beth Terry On November 29, 2008 @ 5:33 am In Recipes | 13 Comments

I hope you all had a happy and safe Thanksgiving. We spent Thursday at a Thanksgiving potluck with friends and made sure that our three dishes were as plastic-free as possible. Below are links to the recipes, with info on ingredients. I wish I had thought to take pictures of the brussels sprouts after they were cooked as well as Michael’s salad.

Dish 1: Pumpkin Pie Risotto with Candied Pecans (From NPR web site.) [1]

All the dry ingredients came from bulk bins at Whole Foods.

I followed the recipe per the NPR instructions, but I kind of feel like something’s wrong with it as written. The risotto tasted great, but it was much softer than expected, bordering on mushy. The procedure is different from most risottos, requiring you to put the rice and liquids all into the pot together instead of sauteeing the rice first and then adding liquid gradually.

Next time (and there will be a next time because I’m determined to get this right) I’m going to try sauteeing the rice in butter first and then adding liquid gradually. Since this is a dessert risotto with sugar and milk in it, I wonder how I can keep the milk and sugar from sticking. Any suggestions?

Dish 2: Pan-Browned Brussels Sprouts (from epicurious.com) [2]

Until this weekend, I never knew that brussels sprouts grew on long stalks like this! I had always just thought of them as baby cabbages. So when I found a binful outside Whole Foods on Wednesday, I was immediately enchanted.

Dish 3: Autumn Harvest Salad with Persimmons (from NPR web site) [3]

This salad was great fun for us to make together, full of unusual ingredients: persimmon, pear, pomegranate, pecan, Medjool dates (one of Michael’s favorite foods). It was the first time I’d ever cut into a pomegranate, actually. The next day at Trader Joe’s, we saw pomegranate arils [4] (the beautiful red edible seeds) packaged in plastic containers, and we thought how much fun we would miss if we were still buying all our foods pre-packaged.

In all three dishes, the only unavoidable packaging came from the dairy products — milk, butter, and cream. Going vegan would solve that problem. But I’m just not ready to take that step. Maybe next year.

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URL to article: http://myplasticfreelife.com/2008/11/plastic-free-thanksgiving-pumpkin-pecan/

URLs in this post:

[1] Pumpkin Pie Risotto with Candied Pecans (From NPR web site.): http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=94939511#94943940

[2] Pan-Browned Brussels Sprouts (from epicurious.com): http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Pan-Browned-Brussels-Sprouts-100868

[3] Autumn Harvest Salad with Persimmons (from NPR web site): http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=97458318#97463949

[4] arils: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aril

[5] Image: https://plus.google.com/+BethTerry

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