Challenge #4 – Cleaning Up Thanksgiving Dinner

A lot will be different for us this Thanksgiving.    It’s the first time we’ve had to fly instead of drive.   It’s our first year with Grant & I being gluten-free.    And, it’s the first year I’ve really pushed to clean up the Thanksgiving menu.    It’s a lot – and honestly it’s feeling that way.

scan0001It’s hard dealing with food allergies and different ways of eating when you travel, let alone over the holidays.    It’s takes research, organization and planning.

I had a sense of dread about even mentioning changing up my contribution  (veggies) to the Thanksgiving meal.    I’ve done Thanksgiving just about every year since I’ve been married with my husband’s family.    My first Thanksgiving with them I made Green Bean Casserole (the one with cream of mushroom soup and durkee onions) and Broccoli Casserole ( broccoli topped with velveeta, butter and ritz crackers) and have every year since.    It’s what I ate every Thanksgiving growing up.    Last year I made it a little better by moving to organic soup and crackers, but I knew it wasn’t the best option.

This year I knew I couldn’t do it.    It’s food that I know I can’t eat.  My body won’t tolerate all the additives and preservatives.    Both dishes also contain gluten, another no-no.    But it had become tradition, and I wasn’t sure if change would be embraced.

I started with an email to my mother-in-law asking about why we never had sweet potatoes and mentioned that I was thinking of changing up the veggies.     The sense of relief that I felt when she wrote back “I think it would be great to change it up” was enormous.  We’re still working back and forth to finalize some details, but here’s what it looks like we’ll be having:

  • Roasted Cauliflower w/parmesan cheese
  • Italian Style Roasted Zucchini (because Grant LOVES it)
  • Butternut Squash
  • Fresh Cranberry Sauce
  • Wild Rice, Fruit & Pecan Stuffing

(I’ll be posting  recipes yet this week)

I was also pleasantly surprised when I got an email from my mother-in-law saying that after reading my Facebook post (Food Babe: Toxins vs. Tradition – if you didn’t read it you need to! ) she went and sourced a local turkey!     Woo – Hoo!

Sometimes to make the change, all you have to do is be brave enough to propose it.

So I ask you, even it’s it’s one little thing, how can you make your Thanksgiving a little “cleaner” this year?   I’ll look forward to knowing your plans.

© Alicia Myers Leifheit and FoodisaJourney.com, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Alicia Myers Leifheit and FoodisaJourney.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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