Lower the carbs for a delicious, diet-friendly Thanksgiving

Lower the carbs for a delicious, diet-friendly Thanksgiving

Ultimate diets
GatheringsStovetop brussels sprouts, crustless pumpkin pie, potato-celeriac mash and apple, fennel, hazelnut salad are low-carb sides to add to the Thanksgiving table.(Photo: Ashleigh Spitza) There is perhaps no time when food is a greater embodiment of love than on Thanksgiving. Cooks spend countless hours planning, shopping for, cooking and serving a meal to those nearest and dearest to their hearts.The meal itself lasts mere minutes, but the memories (and leftovers) linger, keeping us sustained as the days grow cooler and darker.Sometimes, this labor of love requires extra attention when family members follow special diets. Whether it’s a vegetarian cousin, a gluten-free aunt or a parent with diabetes, tweaking the traditional takes some creativity.Flavorful side dishes that cut back on simple carbs and forgo grains meet several dietary needs but can be enjoyed by the whole table.The recipes I chose for this menu are all adapted from the cookbook “Milk Street Kitchen: The New Home Cooking” (Little, Brown and Co., 2017).Some might argue that classic mashed potatoes just shouldn’t be messed with. I would counter that plain old spuds are kind of boring.To infuse depth of flavor into the classic mash while slashing the carb content, celery root (celeriac), is just ....

 Another blood sugar-friendly side dish that’s sure to satisfy is Apple, Fennel and Hazelnut Salad, with that note of freshness that your menu needs.Apple, Fennel and Hazelnut Salad adds crunch and freshness to your holiday menu. (Photo: Ashleigh Spitza)Lending some crunch to your spread as well, the tart matchsticks of apple, more celeriac and thinly sliced, sweet fennel are tossed with a shallot-cider-vinegar-horseradish vinaigrette. This lively union of flavors, flecked with fresh mint and crushed hazelnuts, won’t fade into the background.As an added benefit, apples, fennel, mint and celeriac are all foods that help improve digestion, easing the toll of the heavy Thanksgiving meal.On to brussels sprouts. “Charred, sweet, and nutty, when cooked properly, brussels sprouts are the star of the Thanksgiving spread, ” says James Beard Award-winning chef J. Kenji López-Alt.Late fall is the ideal time of year to enjoy this vegetable, once it’s been sweetened by a cold night’s frost. Rather than roasting in the oven, Milk Street uses a searing hot pan on the stovetop to caramelize the sprouts without overcooking them. .

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