I personally prefer smoked over fried and roast turkey. The orange-tea smoky flavor infuses the whole bird to render even the breast meat juicy. As my father cooks at least three turkeys, each using a different cooking technique mentioned above, he’s also preparing several carb-loaded side dishes.
For the past few years, he’s requested my help to include more vegetable-based side dishes, such as brussels sprouts. Like most people of his generation, he’s learning to focus more on vegetables instead of letting traditional meat be the most important dish on the table. And, there are plenty of flavorful vegetable and grain recipes to include in a Thanksgiving dinner, in which guests—including kids—compete for the last spoonful on the serving platter.
Roast Brussels Sprouts and Wild Brown Rice is a side dish to serve not only during the holidays, but whenever brussels sprouts are in season (from autumn to winter). Like most roast vegetables, their flavor caramelizes into a sweet taste that complements nutty wild brown rice. Cooking wild brown rice in stock or broth with a bay leaf adds more flavor to a traditionally bland ingredient. Combining both flavors creates a side-dish to compete with the main dish. If Dad calls for help with the vegetables this year, I’m looking forward to enjoying a healthy plate of Roast Brussels Sprouts and Wild Brown Rice with a slice of smoked turkey—along with his other delicious carb-heavy dishes.
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