PART TWO of my Ultimate Thanksgiving Prep Series includes the recipes for my Cranberry Citrus-Cider Sauce and a cold Green Bean and Shallot Salad with Champagne Cider Vinaigrette.
This is a two-for-one post. Yes. You get both recipes here in an effort to not turn this into a ten part series. I know. You do not have to thank me. I just like you all that much and want to keep your lives as simple as possible.
First up…this cranberry sauce. There are so many reasons to love this sauce:
It is truly one of the easiest parts of the entire meal.
It makes your home smell amazing while it is simmering.
You can make it the day before the meal since it actually gets even better as it sits.
And best of all, your guests will love it and think that you worked really hard on it (let them think that – do not blow your cover).
Cranberry Citrus-Cider Sauce
(Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Egg-free, Nut-free, Soy-free)
1/2 teaspoon: grated orange zest
1/2 cup: freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 cup: Spiced Cranberry Cider (Trader Joe’s has a wonderful one) or Spiced Apple Cider
1 (12 ounce) bag: fresh cranberries
2/3 cup: brown sugar
1/3 cup: pure maple syrup (organic, if possible)
1/2 teaspoon: ground cinnamon
1: cinnamon stick, for simmering
1. In large sauce pan, add zest of oranges, juice of oranges, cider, cranberries, brown sugar, maple syrup, ground cinnamon, and cinnamon stick.
2. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally.
3. Reduce heat to medium and simmer uncovered for 7 – 10 minutes, or until most of the cranberries pop, still stirring occasionally.
4. Once most of the cranberries have popped, remove from heat and allow to cool. Remove cinnamon stick. Then spoon mixture into serving bowl and refrigerate until well-chilled (about 3 hours or up to 3 days). Mixture will thicken as it chills.
Now for this Green Bean and Shallot Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette.
You can also use Haricots Vert for this salad. An exotic twist? Ahh…but no. They are really only a longer thinner French cousin of our typical American green bean. But does it not just sound so much fancier to say you are serving Haricots Vert and Shallot salad (instead of plain ole’ green beans)?
Okay, since there is not too much you can say about a Green Bean (excuse me, Haricots Vert) and Shallot Salad, let us get on with the recipe. After all, you probably are juggling the Thanksgiving meal right about now and you do not have time to read some witty banter about a silly salad.
Green Bean Shallot Salad & Champagne Vinaigrette
(Gluten-Free, Egg-Free, Nut-free, Soy-Free, Easily Dairy-Free)
2 pounds: green beans (or Hericots Verts), trimmed
3: shallots, VERY finely chopped
1 Cup: grape tomatoes, quartered
1 Tablespoon: balsalmic vinegar
1 Tablespoon: Champagne vinegar
1/2 teaspoon: sea salt
1/2 teaspoon: sugar
1/4 Cup: good quality olive oil
1/2 Cup: fresh basil, finely chopped
1/2 Cup: Romano cheese, grated (For Dairy-Free version, omit entirely, or replace with Parma! Raw Parmesan Cheese Alternative, if not Nut-Free)
1. Prepare a large bowl of ice water and set aside.
2. Bring a 1/2 inch salted water to boil in a large saute pan. Add green beans, cover, and cook until green beans are tender to the bite and water has evaporated, 3 – 4 minutes (depending on your desired crispness).
3. Immediately plunge green beans in ice water to completely cool and stop cooking process. Dry thoroughly. Then place green beans and chopped tomatoes in serving bowl.
4. Combine shallots, vinegar, and salt in another bowl and then gradually whisk in sugar and oil. Add basil.
5. Pour enough dressing over beans and tomatoes to coat.
6. Mix in 1/4 cup of cheese (if Dairy-free, omit entirely, or use Parma, if not Nut-Free), and season with any additional salt, to taste.
7. Cover and chill. Can be made up to this point the day before.
8. Before serving, just top with remaining ¼ cup cheese (unless Dairy free -then omit entirely, or use Parma, if not Nut-Free).
NEXT UP IN THIS SERIES:
PART 4: The Gluten-free Cornbread and Crusty Bread Stuffing I have been promising (and trust me, you will not want to leave out the secret ingredient).
PART 7: The MASTER Shopping List
PART 8: The Recap, with links to everything.