In the Kitchen with Sigona’s: Thanksgiving Side Dishes

In the Kitchen with Sigona’s: Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Since November is all about food, we’re throwing in a few simple side dish recipes. Turkey may be Thanksgiving’s celebrity, but I love making new, healthy side dishes (that aren’t topped with marshmallows) that everyone from grandpa to the 3-year-olds will love.

Savory Shallot & Pancetta Green Beans

Make most of this dish beforehand and finish right before mealtime. It’ll still be crispy and delicious. Serves 4-6.

  • 1 lb. fresh green beans
  • 5 small shallots, diced
  • 2 oz. pancetta, chopped
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  • 1 TBL Sigona’s Fresh Press EVOO

Dunk beans in boiling water for 60-90 seconds. Remove and place in an ice bath. This immediately stops the cooking and keeps them crisp, yet done. Set aside until nearly mealtime; then finish as follows.

Sauté shallots in EVOO until tender. Remove. Sauté pancetta in same skillet until done. Reintroduce shallots add beans. Mix together until warmed through, season with salt & pepper.

Tangy & Sweet Berry-Cran Salad

Involve the kids in this simple dessert: they can dish it up and serve your guests! Berries are pricy this time of year, but really add to a healthy dessert or raw fruit plate.

  • 2 bkts strawberries, stemmed & sliced
  • 1 bskt raspberries
  • 1 bskt blueberries
  • 12 oz. fresh cranberries
  • 2 TBL organic Agave nectar (it’s low glycemic!)
  • Juice from ½ an orange
  • Whipped cream

In a blender, rough chop cranberries. Mix in orange juice and 1 TBL Agave nectar. Let sit for 1 hr.  Separately mix all other berries together with 1 TBL Agave nectar. Let sit for 1 hr (brings out natural sugars).

To serve, stir berry mixes together and top with whipped cream.

Roasted Root Vegetables

I first had roasted roots about 20 years ago at The Rio Grill in Carmel – Wow! Delicious, healthy and easy to experiment with using local, seasonal vegetables! Serves 4 as a side.

  • 1 lg parsnip, peeled
  • 1 lg rutabaga, peeled
  • ½ Butternut squash, peeled
  • 1 lg red onion
  • 8-10 fingerling potatoes (I love Yukon Gold: rich & creamy!)
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • Fresh rosemary & thyme
  • ¼ c. Sigona’s Fresh Press EVOO
  • Salt & pepper

Cut veggies into 2” pieces so they cook evenly. Place on baking sheet (lined with parchment paper for easy clean up), sprinkle with S&P, herbs, garlic and olive oil. Hand mix to coat all pieces. Roast at 400˚for 40-60 mins (check after 45 mins) until veggies are tender and golden.

Tip: To peel Butternut squash, simply cut off both ends so it stands up straight, then slice in half lengthwise. Use a potato peeler to remove the skin.

Fresh Cranberry Sauce

This recipe was submitted on Facebook by Sigona’s customer Brian J. He suggests using a combination of the following to create a deliciously sweet and tangy cranberry sauce. Be adventurous and develop your own recipe using these ingredients.

What you need:

  • Fresh cranberries
  • Water
  • Orange juice
  • Kosher salt
  • Ginger
  • Pineapple
  • Orange peel, grated
  • Sugar

Simmer cranberries over med-low heat with some water. Add in a bit of orange juice, kosher salt, grated ginger, pineapple chunks and sugar for a bit of sweetness.

Gold Beets with Brussels Sprouts and Toasted Almonds

This dish is perfect for fall. Slicing Brussels sprouts into strips may help interest even the most picky palate. Adapted from Serves-4.


  • 3 gold beets
  • 15 Brussels sprouts
  • 1 large shallot, peeled and sliced
  • Sigona’s Fresh Press Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 TBL fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 TBL almond slivers, toasted (see note)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Directions: Wrap beets in aluminum foil and roast in the oven at 375F for about 60 minutes. Set aside and when cool enough to touch, peel and chop them into bite-size pieces.

Remove and discard outer leaves from the Brussels sprouts and then slice them into thin strips. This can be done quickly in a food processor, but a knife works just fine, too.

Add about 1 TBL olive oil to a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Add shallot and cook for about 4-5 minutes or until translucent. Stir in the thyme, sliced Brussels sprouts and beets. Add more olive oil if needed to lightly coat the entire mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stirring occasionally, let the mixture warm through (the sprouts will wilt slightly) for about 3-5 minutes.

When ready to serve, sprinkle with toasted almond slivers. This dish can be served warm or at room temperature.

*Cook’s Note: (to toast almonds, place in a single layer on a baking sheet and place in a 350F oven for about 3-5 minutes. Keep a close eye on them as you don’t want them too browned).

Butternut Squash Roasted with Pumpkin Pie Spiced Balsamic

The delicate nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon perfume in the balsamic pair wonderfully with Butternut squash. Recipe by Rachel Bradley.

What to do:

  • Peel, seed and dice butternut squash
  • Toss liberally with Sigoan’s Pumpkin Pie Spiced Balsamic
  • Sprinkle with sea salt and a little fresh cracked pepper.
  • Roast in a 400F oven for about 30 minutes, flipping after 15 minutes
  • Roast until tender, golden brown and caramelized.

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