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Since I did a lot of traveling in November, my wife and I decided to stick around home this Thanksgiving and spend some quality time with each other and way too much good food. I missed being with my family this year, but it was relaxing to be able to hang out at home with no travel further than the supermarket.

We decided to devote all of Thursday to cooking. After all, even though it was only two of us, what’s Thanksgiving without a feast to gorge yourself on, right?

Here’s a rundown of our menu:

  • Bryanna Clark-Grogan’s Soy-Seitan “Turkey” – I’m bored of Tofurkeys at this point, but in an effort to have something familar and turkey-like on the table, we decided to make our own this year. It wasn’t terribly difficult and the end result was quite good. The texture was that kind of bouncy texture that seitan tends to have, but the flavor was pretty spot on. My wife gave it the thumbs up and it’s awesome on turkey sandwiches the next day.
  • Mashed Potatoes with Punk Rock Chickpea Gravy – Isa’s gravy kicked butt (though I’ll probaby half the amount of lemon, as it was a tad sour) and the potatoes were delicious. Who would have thought chickpeas and a load of spices would make some of the most delicious gravy I’ve tasted?
  • Cranberry Sauce – Another Bryanna Clark-Grogan recipe, we used agave nectar in place of the sugar this time around with great results.
  • Pumpkin Bread – We made a veganized version of my mom’s pumpkin bread recipe, one of my favorite parts of this time of year. I’ll post the recipe here shortly.
  • Pumpkin Pie – Another Bryanna recipe (the first link in this list points to a load of holiday recipes) that came out quite well. I’ve failed twice in my two previous attempts at pumpkin pies, so it was nice that this one worked for me. As a bonus, it doesn’t use tofu; I love tofu, but every time I’ve tried it in a pumpkin pie, it’s been grainy. We used a prepared crust which wasn’t so great, but the pie filling was excellent.

What’d you have to eat?

links for 2005-11-23


The Presidential Turkey Pardon 2005


Federal Turkeys Wing It This Year

As I mentioned a few years ago, the whole presidential turkey pardon is a frustratingly annoying event. It’s meant to be this cutesy gesture, all “Hey, look, it’s so cute and funny! We’re pardoning turkeys from their death sentence! Tee-hee!” (Interestingly, as a blogger somewhere pointed out, it’s a gesture that the death row inmates in Texas rarely got…)

This year, after pressure from PETA, the turkeys won’t be going to Frying Pan Park in Herndon, VA. Many pardoned turkeys in recent years have died within a year. Frying Pan Park denies any wrongdoing and points to the unnatural weight these turkeys have to hold. I can’t say for sure whether the turkeys were treated well or not, but I know that we’ve got a number of would-have-been-Thanksgiving turkeys at Poplar Spring and all of them have lived long lives well beyond a year. This year’s birds will be flown first class to Disneyland.

Of course, this pardon doesn’t do much to bring to light the life and ultimate fate of 45 million other turkeys each Thanksgiving (that’s 15% of all turkey consumed each year in the United States). In honor of the millions of birds that wind up on Amercia’s table on the fourth Thursday of each November, some facts about turkeys and the conditions they’re raised in:

Put us on your bumper

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i kill vegetables bumper sticker

The veg blog Cafepress store is now open for business. Sure, if it were a real store, it would be a little off-putting to walk in and see only a single bumper sticker for sale, but more’s on the way… don’t worry. I just have to think of clever things that haven’t been said already.