Vegetarian Christmas Entertaining Ideas


Whether you observe Christmas or another religious or cultural holiday, or just an opportunity to take some time off work, this is a season for celebrating family, friends and — of course — food. With cherished traditional recipes and tantalizing displays of elegant dishes and treats, food plays an important role in our observance of Christmas, from a special family breakfast through to the snacks passed around during the day, and finally to a memorable dinner.

Over the years I've created treats and meals for my own loved ones at Christmas, and I'm so happy that they have become as cherished to themselves as to me. Friends and families of vegetarians such as myself often have to forgo or add to earlier Christmas food traditions out of necessity, but one of the purposes of my cooking for friends and family has been to show them that vegetarian food can be just as rewarding an experience on special occasions as it is for everyday eating. One of my greatest rewards is to find that they themselves have discovered that Christmas traditions can grow and change through time without any loss of flavor or delight.

I cannot serve my treats and dishes to you, my readers, as much as I would like to. But I hope that sharing the recipes with you will provide you with inspirations and ideas that will add to your own Christmas eating and entertaining experiences, and make your holidays a time of sharing wonderful food as much as sharing time with the most important people in your life. Most of all, I hope that each and everyone one of you have a very warm and blessed Christmas.

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Vegetarian Thanksgiving Entertaining Ideas

Vegetarian Thanksgiving Entertaining Ideas

Thanksgiving Day is almost upon us again. First set aside in North America to celebrate the harvest bounty of the New World, Thanksgiving is a useful reminder for those of us modern-day urban-dwellers accustomed to enormous supermarkets that shelves and shelves of inexpensive food couldn't always be so easily taken for granted … it may be especially appropriate for us to remember this year. It seems appropriate that as we give thanks for being able to spend a day with family and friends, we celebrate with food … and usually plenty of it!

These are some of my favorite fall entertaining ideas from the hundreds of recipes I've published over the years. From breakfast or brunch through to snacks and appetizers, dinner ideas, soups, salads and side dishes, and — of course — treats and desserts, there's something for every vegetarian or any family with vegetarians to feed at Thanksgiving. There are even some ideas in there for vegans or those who want to try an Indian-themed Thanksgiving dinner for a different experience. Your family and friends just might be giving thanks for your cooking at the end of the day!

Check out these and other menu ideas on vegetarian Thanksgiving menu ideas

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Pistachio Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Pistachio Chocolate Chunk Cookies

I'm neither gluten-intolerant nor a strict vegan, but I find that making treats or desserts without flour or dairy is not just an enjoyable and challenging departure from the kind of baking I learned growing up, but it's also deliciously rewarding. These easy chewy little pistachio cookies with dark chocolate chunks are just as tasty as any cookie you could make with flour, eggs or milk, but they don't have any of those ingredients at all. And they're loaded with protein and fiber from nuts, nut butter and sesame seeds, so you can feel good about enjoying them as well.
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Spanish-Style Saffron Rice with Black Beans

Spanish-Style Saffron Rice with Black Beans

Even those of us who are avid cooks sometimes desire a meal without fuss, but one that is nourshing and satisfying all the same. This colorful and hearty dish is a vegetarian twist on paella. Although there's neither meat nor seafood, the common component of paella, it's very much inspired by traditional paellas with short grain rice, vegetables and beans seasoned with saffron — from which the dish gets its reddish and glowing color — and spices, all cooked in a single large skillet, from which paella, "frying pan" in Valencian, gets its name. A generous helping of black olives stirred in at the end adds a final twist of robust yet complimentary flavor.

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