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Oct 27, 2012 03:51 AM

Green vegetable for Thanksgiving

Looking for suggestions for something to provide contrast with all the sweet, heavy, mushy carb-y sides.

Brussel sprouts and broccoli hated by most.

We will have a mixed green salad with lemon vinaigrette. And what else? Currently under consideration (but would welcome other thoughts):

Green beans with marcona almonds
Green beans in little packages wrapped with bacon (or scallion for the vegetarians).
Roasted or sauteed broccoli raab with fennel
Greens (kale or spinach) with pinenuts, raisins, apples
Braised endive (but I think too mushy).

Rest of menu: Turkey, mashed potato, roasted sweet potato, mac and cheese, truly weird family stuffing recipe, salad, cranberry sauces, cornbread.

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  1. Been doing this with first three, now four generations. Who allowed the kids to grow up and get married!!!

    I am responsible for vegetables. Used to show my artistry and expertise, and had lots of leftovers after feeding 15 to 30 folks. No reason to slave in the kitchen 3-4 hours prepping and cooking while everybody else is enjoying parades, neighborhood soccer, Manhattans, and the hot tub. I now stay with the basics.

    All veggies are fresh. Hollandaise is Knorr, cheese sauce is Velveeta or Kraft. I use heavy cream and butter, and use fleur de sal for more intimate meals. I usually steam boccoli or cauliflower and drown in cheese sauce. Asparagus with hollandaise is a requirement. So are stuffed mushrooms. Half seafood, half sausage.

    I have tried the more esoteric green veggies. When cooking to excite, they expect it. But for my crowd, not for Thanksgiving. As one young lass put it, "Can't we just have some canned corn with butter?" It has been on the table for the last 10 plus years And I wouldn't want it any other way.

    1. I say the green beans with almonds. If most hate broccoli, are they okay with broccoli raab? I know the flavour is quite different, but there is a strong visual resemblance.

      1. If you've got salad already, are you sure you need more green on the light side?

        Green beans, even just straight up, would be my first thought.

        You don't mention green peas, which play nice next to mashed potatoes and gravy, IMO.

        1. WE do green beans- a bit of onion, butter and S/P. We also do spinach- quickly sauteed with garlic and lemon. Our crowd loves brussel sprouts, so they are on our table. Two of the kids love asparagus- so we serve that roasted- not a fall vegetable, but if they eat it, is is all good! To be truthful, we are vegetable heavy at our meal- We do not serve a geen salad, but do have cabbage salad. Also have carrots, butternut, beets, creamed onions, creamed cauliflower, peas, mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes. Of course, stuffing, cranberry sauce, lots of gravy and rolls.

          2 Replies
            1. re: Bada Bing

              We do steamed asparagus every year. The crunchiness and flavor contrast well with the other sides. I used to do fresh green beans but (a) our local grocer started having excellent sale prices on asparagus at Thanksgiving every year, and (b) it takes far less time to prep asparagus than fresh green beans. Yes, the asparagus is flown in from Peru (or a similar venue) but, aside from root vegetables, there's not much local produce in the stores in late November in Chicago.

          1. Creamed spinach or creamed kale. If you want a delicious cheat, Boston Market's creamed spinach is wonderful, but get it as takeout from one of their restaurants. The frozen BM CS sold in supermarkets is NOT the same.