Articles / 9 (Slightly) Unexpected Thanksgiving Vegetable Sides

9 (Slightly) Unexpected Thanksgiving Vegetable Sides

Published November 13, 2018

I’ve published something like 15,000 recipes over the years, and I remember most of them by heart. (Actually…maybe not.) But when we go through autumn vegetable recipes—which is what you want most of on your Thanksgiving table—a few really stand out. The ones included here are among those winners, and I’m happy to say most of them are current—they wouldn’t be classified as classics, but they don’t veer so far off course that your guests will find anything weird about them. The Brussels sprouts are probably the closest thing to revolutionary, unless everyone has spent time in Southeast Asia. But they’re different and good. And the same is true of the rest of these: different and good. So, let’s get to it.

— Mark

Photo: Quentin Bacon
Aside from cranberry sauce, most Thanksgiving foods are desperately lacking in bright flavors. If you want to mitigate that, keep some lemons and a zester on hand; for something even (a little) more unusual, try these Brussels sprouts, which use the Malaysian technique of boiling down coconut milk until all that remains is coconut oil and milk solids. The resulting dish is called rendang, which usually contains meat but is fantastic for Brussels sprouts. I know it’s outside the box, but surprising flavors (lemongrass, lime, turmeric, ginger, chiles) can be such a welcome presence on the Thanksgiving table.