Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Seven Days of Thanksgiving, Day 3: Going Green

Green beans have been grown in Mexico for 7,000 years.

Broccoli originated on the island of Cyprus almost three thousand years ago.

Thanks to anthocyanin pigmentation, the first carrots cultivated in Afghanistan in the 7th century were grown in a variety of colors.

George Washington was known to eat a cooked onion in order to stave off a cold.
The average ear of corn has 800 kernels, arranged in sixteen rows. A bushel of corn contains approximately 27,000 kernels.

The Scoville scale is a means of measuring the heat (i.e. spiciness) of various chile peppers. A mild bell pepper scores a zero on the scale, while a jalapeƱo may score anywhere between 2,500 and 10,000 Scoville units. The much hotter habanero pepper scores between 100,000 and 350,000 Scoville units.

French writer Marcel Proust claimed that asparagus "transforms my chamber-pot into a flask of perfume".

Arugula is known in many English-speaking nations as "rocket".

Broccoli Cauliflower Casserole: Another Favorite Holiday Recipe

I first tasted this recipe when my Aunt Mary made it for Christmas 1992. It made quite an impression, and before long my mom had begun preparing it as well. As with yesterday's sweet potato recipe, apologies for not having a photo to upload; the last time I had both dishes was well before I entered my "take photos of everything I eat" phase.

1 large bunch broccoli or 16 oz bag frozen
1 whole cauliflower or 16 oz bag frozen
8 oz light cream cheese, softened
2 Tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cube butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup slivered almonds

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Spray 6" x 9" x 1.5" dish with nonstick spray
Boil and drain vegetables
Mash vegetables with fork or potato masher; set aside
In saucepan on low heat, melt butter and stir in 6 tablespoons of milk
Dilute cornstarch with remaining 2 tablespoons of milk and add to saucepan
Add cream cheese to saucepan and stir until creamy; remove from heat
Add cream cheese mixture to vegetables
Pour everything into the greased dish and top with slivered almonds
Bake for 30-45 minutes


  1. Very interesting bits of information! This dish has become one of my favorites. It's even better the next day.

  2. I was planning to open with a disclaimer along the lines of, "Mr. Manuel, you can safely skip this entry." Must've slipped my mind. :)

  3. It's always good to have some green veggies at the Thanksgiving table. It makes for a nice break from all the other really heavy tasting stuff. Plus, this way, you can feel a little virtuous, too. Happy Turkey Day!