Fresh Healthy Raw Vegan Thanksgiving

One of the biggest challenges for me, personally, is coming up in the next few weeks: Thanksgiving.

I LOVE HOLIDAYS!! But the idea of eating all of that unhealthy food is weighing on my mind. It’s complicated, too, by the fact that Thanksgiving is not just one day for us. We will have a Thanksgiving meal with multiple branches of our family tree, all resplendent with gleaming assortments of hormone infused turkey, gelled cranberry sauce, and processed stuffing. Blech.

What’s a girl to do? These are traditional family recipes and holidays centered around food. ย The first step for me has been to start educating my mind, and sharing with my son, about the holiday is NOT about food. We are not celebrating eating, we are not glorifying the gorging of oneself, no matter how great my Grandmother’s squash casserole might be (and it is amazing).

Instead, for Thanksgiving we are celebrating God’s provision to the Pilgrims during a time of winter famine. We are celebrating the establishment of the United States of America by a boat full of people who were undaunted by great harship. We are celebrating the freedom of religion, the freedom of thought, and the very freedom that makes it ok for us to decide to go non-mainstream about what we eat and how we care for ourselves without fear of persecution.

We are celebrating our families, both those present and those we miss. We are spending time thanking God for his blessings, for his provision, for his protection over us, for his faithfulness to us. We are thanking each other for the love, support, honor, and respect we give to our family. We are spending this time being thankful, and we may have a meal while we are at it.

The thing is, though, that the Thanksgiving meal is not so different from other meals aside from the assortment is greater. We will eat that dinner like we always eat dinner, which means picking something healthy, but tasteful, eating until we are full, and stopping.

You know the relatives love to bring out the big guns of food goodies, though, and will offer my son cookies, cakes, pies, and all kinds of yummies that I can’t lie and say aren’t delicious–because they are—but the contents of that food is not what we want to put into our bodies. We want to be healthy, and yummy is a priority, but not the reason we eat.

So I’m prepared. Check out these 3 kid-friendly, dare I say Kid-Approved, healthy snacks I will be taking to Thanksgiving this year.

Pear Turkeys

img_fruit-turkeys

This idea comes from Pottery Barnย No, I did not know they offered cooking suggestions, but why not?

You take different colored pears, and slice them up to make the feathers. The different colors on the pear help your turkey look colorful. The oranges add dimension–just a tip here, use clementines. They peel SO much easier.

Also, with the face, the website did not get too much direction, so best I can tell, you’re going to cut the “gobbler” (that little dangling peice below the beak) out of the second half of pear you didn’t use for the body of the turkey itself. Then the eyes look like raisins (You might could use organic dark chocolate chips?)

Again, with the face there’s not much instruction on the site, so here are my suggestions/options:

For eyes:

1 ) Use raisins, and attach them using those toothpicks that have a colored tip. Then the tip looks like an eyeball, for display, but it’s obvious from looking at it that it needs to be removed before you eat it.

2) Use honey to attach the raisins to the head. You can also use a sliced pear as the backing…detail work with pear gets on my nerves. I’m just not that patient. But it is an idea for you if you don’t want toothpicks around small mouths.

3) Use grape halves for eyes. Stick them on with honey.

For the beak:

1) use a peanut.

2) If your kid is allergic to nuts, or you want to avoid peanuts for really small children, you might try another kind of nut, like an almond or pistachio.

3) No nuts? I’m always a fan of dark chocolate chips.

4) You can use Mr. Potatohead parts.

5) organic cheese

For the gobbler:

1) Cut out a peice of pear

2) Use a carrot string

3) red bell pepper (not great tasting, but kids will likely remove the face parts anyway).

For the feet:

1) Nuts

2) use piped icing like you would for a cake

3) Use celery sticks

4) Use carrot sticks

5) Use peices of pear and just cut out feet

What did you come up with for turkey “accessory” parts?

Giant Melon Turkey

Screen shot 2013-11-15 at 10.38.19 AM

All of the instructions are included in the picture (and if you click on the image that website it is linked to has several other kid-friendly food ideas. This one is the best one I saw that was also healthy and unprocessed). There are two variations of this melon turkey on the site I linked to, one with a pumpkin and the other with a watermelon. ๐Ÿ™‚

Question: My husband is allergic to red bell peppers. What do you suggest I use for the gobbler and the feet on this one? Right now, I’m going to cut an apple lengthwise into halves, and put them as the feet with maybe some chocolate chips as talons…then for the gobbler…..I may cut up some strawberries into quarters and stick them into the pear with toothpicks to hold them on so that it takes the shape of the gobbler. I’ll post pictures later next week of what I come up with! ๐Ÿ™‚

Last, but not least, here’s a list grownup recipes I think even the kids will love. PS. I have actually made this pumpkin pie recipe I listed here, and my family loved it. It’s awesome. Do chill it before you serve it, though, or it comes out more like pudding. It’s still tasty as pudding, but since you are trying to make pie, I’ll go ahead and share that yes the chilling recommendation is necessary. ๐Ÿ™‚ Overnight is best. All of the grown up recipes come from this blog.

Raw Vegan Cranberry Relish


Screen shot 2013-11-15 at 10.52.46 AM

Raw Vegan Pumpkin Pie

Screen shot 2013-11-15 at 10.57.26 AM
Raw Vegan Apple Pie

Screen shot 2013-11-15 at 10.57.36 AM

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