|Tamari-Roasted Brussels Sprouts.|
(Photo by Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post)
A funny thing happens when you host a vegetarian Thanksgiving: The whole shebang gets a heck of a lot easier.
Consider all the questions you no longer have to answer: Did I order the turkey in time? Is it fresh, or frozen? If frozen, do I have time to thaw it? Do I have space? Should I brine? Wet or dry? Do I have a bag or bucket big enough? Space in the fridge?
And that’s before the oven even gets preheated.
I’ve long said that vegetarianism too often focuses on the absence of the meat rather than the presence of the vegetables, that the produce itself gets short shrift when the dishes are defined that way. (Hence, I wish we had a day of the week that starts with the letter V so we could have Vegetable V-days rather than Meatless Mondays.)
Still, I have to admit that the best thing about cooking my first all-vegetarian Thanksgiving last year might have been the fact that there was so much more room — in the oven, on the table, on the to-do list and, finally, in our stomachs — because we had declared the whole event to be fowl-free. In its place, thankfully, were all the vegetables we wanted to celebrate.