Lightened Up Holiday “Classic” Recipes
Raw Cranberry-Orange-Apple Relish
- 16 oz. cranberries (fresh or thawed frozen, not dried)
- 1 navel orange or two tangerines/mandarins (cut into slices, we like to include the peel as well)*
- 1 large apple (cored and coarsely chopped)
- 3/4 cup dates and raisins (we use ½ dates, ¼ raisins, but you can use just one or the other)
- Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and mix until well combined!
- You might have to scrape down the sides a bit to make sure everything is mixed together!
* We highly recommend using organic citrus (if feasible), especially if the fruit is imported. For more information about the health concerns of conventional citrus, click here. Apples are also on the “Dirty Dozen” list, so we encourage the use of organic apples as well.
Mushroom Gravy (8 servings)
- 2 Tablespoons vegetable broth or cooking wine
- ⅓ cup onion (finely chopped)
- 16 ounces mushrooms (sliced)
- ½ Tablespoon tamari (or soy sauce if gluten isn’t a concern)
- 2 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1½ Tablespoons fresh thyme leaves (or 1.5 teaspoons dried)
- ½ Tablespoon chopped rosemary (or ½ to ¾ teaspoon dried)
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour (gluten-free thickener options → sweet rice flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, or cornstarch)*
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Heat the 2 Tablespoons vegetable broth or cooking wine in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add the onions and cook until soft (about 4 minutes).
- Add the mushrooms and cook until soft (about 8 to 10 minutes).
- Stir in the tamari, garlic, thyme, and rosemary.
- Sprinkle the flour* over the mushrooms and stir (about 1 minute).
- Add the broth and simmer until thickened, whisking often (about 20 minutes).
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
* To make this recipe gluten-free:
- Omit the flour in step 5.
- Before adding the broth to the skillet in step 6, spoon a few tablespoons of the vegetable broth into a small bowl.
- Add 2 Tablespoons of your gluten-free thicker and stir until smooth.
- Pour this mixture back into the pan and stir until the gravy thickens (1-2 minutes).
Pumpkin Pie (or 16 mini-pies)
- 2 cups rolled oats (use certified gluten-free for a GF option)
- 2/3 cup dates (pitted, packed)
- 1/3 cup nut or seed butter
- 1/8 teaspoon sea salt (omit if nut or seed butter has salt)
- 2 Tablespoons plant-based milk (or more if needed to bring the crust together)
1 15-oz can (398ml) pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
2/3 – 3/4 cup raw cashews (2/3 for slightly softer set, 3/4 for firmer)*
1/3 cup plain or vanilla unsweetened plant-based milk (we prefer soy because of its thickness, but the choice is yours)
2/3 cup dates (pitted, packed)
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 Tablespoon arrowroot powder (or sweet rich flour, tapioca flour, potato starch, corn starch – all of these are gluten-free)
1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (or 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon ground ginger, 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg, 1/4 teaspoon allspice, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves, optional – ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper)*
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/4 teaspoon vanilla bean powder)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Make the crust.
- In a food processor/blender (or we use an immersion blender in a 1-quart mason jar → less clean up), add the oats, dates, and salt for the crust.
- Puree until fine and crumbly.
- Then add the nut or seed butter and puree (about 1 minute).
- Add the plant-based milk and pulse through until the mixture becomes sticky (it should hold together when pressed/pinched).
- If it’s not holding together, add a little more plant-based milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until it does. You shouldn’t need more than another 3-4 teaspoons (unless your dates are dry and you may need a bit more).
- Make the filling.
- In a food processor/blender/using an immersion blender – purée all the filling ingredients together until very smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
3a. For making a pie (we use a glass pie plate).
- Be sure to first lightly wipe the inner surface with a dab of oil (or spray).
- Press the crust mixture in the prepared pie plate with your fingers until evenly distributed on the base and a little up the sides of the plate (not fully up the sides to prevent burning of the crust).
- Pour the pie filling into the pie crust and gently tip back and forth to distribute evenly.
- Bake at 400°F for 10 minutes (we don’t preheat the oven), then reduce heat to 350°F and continue to bake for 25 minutes, until the pie is golden and has mostly set (temperature reaches 180°F, the center may be soft, but it will set further as it cools).
- Remove from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool completely before slicing and serving (can refrigerate to chill first).
3b. For making 16 “mini” pies (we use a 24-slot mini tartlet pan, a mini
cupcake pan should also probably work, but we haven’t tried that.)
- Be sure to first lightly wipe the inner surfaces WELL with a dab of oil (or spray). Or, if using cupcake liners, you can skip the oil.
- Divide the crust into 16 doughnut hole sized balls.
- Press crust into the individual mini-tartlet pan spaces.
- Put approximately 2 Tablespoons of the pie mixture on top of each of the 16 individual pie crusts.
- Bake at 400°F for 10 minutes (we don’t preheat the oven), then reduce heat to 350°F and continue to bake for 12-15 more minutes, until the pie is golden and has mostly set (temperature reaches 180°F, the center may be soft, but it will set further as it cools).
- Remove from the oven, transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool completely before removing (from the pan) and serving (can refrigerate to chill first).
4. Serve with: plant-based whipped cream, plant-based vanilla ice cream, or other topping of choice.
* To make this nut-free use raw, unsalted, sunflower seeds.