For people who'd prefer to coddle, not cook, a turkey, Thanksgiving can be hell. Yeah, yeah, it's nice to see the family and wine is fun and all, but there's only so many helpings of mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie one can handle (trust me, I've tried, and the number is much smaller than one would hope or imagine).
A smattering of restaurants in Broward and Palm Beach Counties have your vegetarian back this holiday season by offering meat-free Thanksgiving Day feasts. Be sure to make reservations, stat. These places are likely to fill up.
- Darbster Waterside Bistro in West Palm Beach
Even a cynic would find themselves counting their lucky stars for living in a climate that makes it possible to enjoy an outdoor, waterside meal on Thanksgiving Day. Because, really, that kind of thing is awesome to be able to rub in all of your northern friends' faces via Facebook. This cozy all-veg restaurant will open its doors from noon to 4 p.m. on Thursday, November 22. Walk-ins and reservations will be accepted and takeout's available.
On the menu -- which is divided into raw and cooked sections -- are a healthy variety of vegetable-based dishes. Soups are cream of asparagus (raw) and butternut bisque (cooked); entrees are stuffed portobello with mashed root vegetable torte and sprouted quinoa pilaf (raw) and meat-free "turkey" roulade with cornbread shiitake stuffing with wild mushroom demi-glace served with smashed Yukon and rutabaga, with balsamic-braised Brussels sprouts, bourbon cranberry jam salt, and roasted sweet potato and marshmallow creme anglaise (cooked). Dessert is raw sweet potato pie or baked apple strudel or pumpkin pie.
- Sublime in Fort Lauderdale
The South Florida restaurant favored by celebs like Alec Baldwin and Joan Jett is serving a meat- and dairy-free holiday dinner for bunny-hugging rockstars in South Florida. The menu starts with a traditional Waldorf salad, save for the egg-soaked mayo in the dressing. Next, choose an entree; a Gardein non-turkey turkey roast or roasted acorn squash stuffed with quinoa. Both entrees come with sides of fresh green beans, button mushrooms, and cranberry sauce.
Dessert is pumpkin "cheesecake" with almond nut crust or the apple crumb pie a la mode. Reservations are strongly encouraged. The cost is $39 for adults and $29 for kids ages 12 years and younger. The price includes coffee, tea, and soft drinks. Seatings are available from 1 to 3 p.m. Thursday, November 22.
- Le Bistro in Lighthouse Point
Meat lovers and herbivores alike can gather at the table at Le Bistro for a four-course prix fixe menu. The spread includes meaty and meat-free choices (plus a few gluten-free and dairy-free dishes) like a seasonal squash chowder (order it without the fried pork belly). The second course of an autumn salad is nothing but veggies, fruit, and other fixings. The meatfree entree is a honey-roasted acorn squash stuffed with tomatoes, potato hash, peppers, and asparagus. Three dessert choices are available. The cost is $35 for adults and $15 for kids 12 years and younger.
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