Turkey-Free Thanksgiving Main Dishes
Apple-&-Leek-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
Stuff pork tenderloin with apple and leek to take it from ordinary to elegant. Our easy method of tying the roast together keeps the filling inside while you brown and roast it. We use applejack, brandy made from apple cider, for depth of flavor in the pan sauce, but you can use 1/2 cup cider if you prefer.
Sweet Potato, Red Onion & Fontina Tart
Try this roasted-vegetable free-form tart as an appetizer or side dish for a special dinner or as a vegetarian main dish. The pastry dough is very forgiving and quite easy to roll out on parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat. The walnut-studded crust is crisper served warm, but you can enjoy the tart at room temperature or cold too.
The orange marmalade and soy sauce glaze accentuates the rich, gamy taste of duck. It's an irresistible treat for company any time of year.
Squash & Leek Lasagna
Grated butternut squash, pine nuts and sautéed leeks in a creamy white sauce are layered with sheets of whole-wheat pasta for this wintery variation on a vegetable lasagna. Any Parmesan cheese can be used in this casserole, but we recommend Parmigiano-Reggiano for its superior flavor.
Roasted Pheasant with Wheat Berry Salad
Pheasant is a small bird with a delicate flavor that's richer than chicken. We roast apples and shallots in the pan along with the bird, then toss them with cooked wheat berries for a delicious whole-grain side.
Roasted Fall Vegetables in Cheddar Crust
This tart starts with a Cheddar cheese crust that's filled with roasted leeks, fennel and broccoli or Brussels sprouts. Beets or cauliflower would stand in beautifully too.
Roast Chicken with Preserved Lemon & Braised Vegetables
The pulp and rind of Moroccan preserved lemons is all you need to lift a pedestrian roast chicken into the realm of the exotic!
Rustic Mushroom Tart
Don't let phyllo dough's fussy reputation put you off: our method of brushing olive oil and sprinkling breadcrumbs between the layers makes this tart actually quite simple to assemble, and helps keep it healthy. It can be served as a main course or cut into smaller pieces and enjoyed as an appetizer.
Pork Medallions with Fig & Port Wine Sauce
This dish showcases how deliciously pork complements the sweet and tart tastes of fruit.
Savory Carrot & Tarragon Tart
The bright orange carrots in this savory tart are a feast for the eyes and the palate. Tarragon lends bold flavor to the tart. Other herbs, such as thyme or rosemary, would be delicious too.
Salmon with Red Wine-Morel Sauce
Dried mushrooms give this rich red-wine sauce an almost meaty flavor. Look for them in the produce department of well-stocked supermarkets or specialty grocers. If you're not a fan of salmon, try the recipe with halibut instead. Serve with barley tossed with parsley and steamed broccolini. To double: Prepare a double batch of sauce in the large skillet, increasing reduction time as needed. Cook 2 1/2 pounds of salmon in two batches, adding oil as necessary.
Mediterranean Couscous Cabbage Rolls
We love the subtle flavor of cinnamon with fresh mint in these vegetarian cabbage rolls stuffed with couscous, olives and feta cheese. Don't worry if your cabbage leaves tear a little when you pull them off the head; they will wrap up just fine. As a precaution you can cook a couple extra leaves and roll two partly overlapping if needed. Serve with roasted butternut squash tossed with olive oil, cinnamon and garlic. To double this recipe, use 2 large skillets and prepare one 4-serving recipe in each.
Game Hens with Brussels Sprouts & Chestnuts
Game hens are even easier to prepare than chicken and help make your celebration more festive. Their buttery flavor complements roasted Brussels sprouts and chestnuts.
Acorn Squash Stuffed with Chard & White Beans
Acorn squash's natural shape makes it just right for stuffing. This filling has Mediterranean flair: olives, tomato paste, white beans and Parmesan cheese. Serve with: Mixed green salad with radicchio and red onion and crisp white wine, such as Pinot Grigio.
Pork Tenderloin Stuffed with Porcini Mushrooms
Stuffing this lean pork with mushrooms adds not only elegance but also flavor and juiciness.
Broccoli & Goat Cheese Souffle
This elegant broccoli and goat cheese soufflé will wow your family and friends. Soufflés are surprisingly easy to make--the only trick is getting them on the table before they deflate. Serve with: A tomato-and-fennel salad and, for dessert, fresh strawberries drizzled with balsamic vinegar.
Quail with Ginger-Cranberry Pilaf
Here, we sear quail in a skillet and then finish them in the oven over a bed of pear- and cranberry-studded brown-rice pilaf. Although they look like they might be tricky to prepare, quail couldn't be easier to roast. And the flavor payoff is big--rich, succulent meat that is a dark-meat lover's delight.
Plank-Grilled Sweet Soy Salmon
Using a plank to grill fish keeps it from sticking or falling through the grate and imparts a subtle smoky flavor to the salmon. You could also use mahi-mahi or Pacific halibut in this recipe.