Just in case you’re unsure about how to balance out your Thanksgiving meal to make it a little less guilt-ridden, add lots of vegetables as your sides. I already mentioned the mashed sweet potatoes, but my family also has a tradition of making green beans. I actually got this recipe from Felicity’s Colonial Cookbook (the now-retired best American Girl Doll ever). It’s a little indulgent, with the heavy cream, but only a little sticks so it’s really for flavor.
Green Beans and Cream
Fresh green beans
¼ c heavy cream
While the turkey is resting and the gravy is almost done:
Steam or saute green beans, about 7 minutes or until the beans are just softening.
Toss with 1T butter and salt and pepper to taste. Add the cream and stir.
Easy, right? Last year, we also supplemented with sauteed (read: burnt to perfection) broccoli. Our other sides weren’t so healthy. The consisted of my boyfriend’s grandmother’s stuffing (definitely not giving that recipe away) and Pillsbury pull-apart rolls topped with plenty of butter. The rolls were superfluous, and certainly not the healthiest choice of grain, but fun nonetheless.
Once the sides were set, the most important decision was left. What to drink? A Bahstahn Lahgah or a porter would go well with a hearty meal, but I really thought wine would be a more refined choice. We ended up getting both a heavy Bordeaux and the Fat Bastard Chardonnay, but we saved the Chardonnay for a leftover day. The red just seemed more Thanksgiving-y. And it was perfect!
- 1/2 lb fresh green beans
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1 Tbsp butter
- Saute green beans, about 7 minutes or until the beans are just softening.
- Toss with butter and salt and pepper to taste. Add the cream and stir.
For the guide to a perfect turkey, see: Thanksgiving Part One: The Perfect Turkey
For the incredible turkey gravy that my boyfriend tackled, check out this post: Thanksgiving Part Two: Super simple, deceptively healthy mashed potatoes
For two fantastic desserts that actually have health benefits: Thanksgiving Part Four: Healthy Desserts (still no sacrifices)