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Forget turkey! Roast a chicken this Thanksgiving

Whether you're not a fan of turkey or just don't have enough time to cook up a big bird, chef Reed Alexander is here to help with recipes for rustic roasted chicken, butternut squash fries and mini caramel pumpkin pies.

Rustic roasted chicken
Servings:

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • For the wet rub:

    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
    • 2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme
    • 2 tablespoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • For the chicken:

    • 1 fresh organic whole chicken, about 4 pounds
    • 1 lemon, halved
    • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
    • 15 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
    • 15 sprigs fresh thyme
    • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
    • To make the rub, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well.

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Rinse the chicken inside and out and pat dry. Season inside the body cavity with salt and pepper. Place the lemon halves, garlic cloves, and parsley and thyme sprigs in the cavity. Place the chicken in a roasting pan or baking dish. Spread the rub evenly over the chicken, covering all exposed skin and meat.Pour the broth around the chicken in the pan. Roast for 80 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken, where legs meet breasts, is 165 degrees and the chicken juices run clear when the meat is pierced by a fork. Let rest 5 minutes before carving.

Butternut squash fries
Servings:

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

    • 2 large egg whites, lightly beaten
    • 1 cup unsweetened cornflakes cereal, crushed
    • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
    • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
    • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1 teaspoon dried savory
    • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
    • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 2 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and sliced into matchsticks

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly coat with olive oil.Place the egg whites in a bowl. In a wide baking dish, combine the crushed cornflakes, garlic powder, marjoram, oregano, savory, thyme, salt, and pepper.Using tongs, dip the squash fries into the egg whites until coated. Transfer to the corn-flakes mixture and coat on all sides. Place on the baking sheet in a single, even layer.Bake 40 to 45 minutes, until the inside is fork-tender and the outside is crispy. Serve immediately.

Mini caramel pumpkin pies
Servings:

Makes 4 miniature pies

Ingredients

    • 2/3 cup raw sugar
    • 1/3 cup water
    • 1/4 cup pure Grade A maple syrup
    • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
    • 1 (15-ounce) can solid pack pumpkin puree
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • 5 large egg whites, at room temperature (4 for pie filling, 1 for pie crust)
    • 2 (9-inch) round pie crusts, store-bought or homemade
    • Nonstick baking spray

Preparation

Baking Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Lightly spray the interior of four miniature, round pie dishes (approximately 5 to 6 inches in diameter) with nonstick baking spray. Divide each pie crust evenly among two pie dishes to cover interior, crimp edges with the tines of a fork, prick crust all over with fork to create steam vents, and brush crust with one egg white. Blind bake 30 minutes, until crust is golden brown.Combine sugar, water, and maple syrup in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium high heat, swirling pan (but not stirring) occasionally until sugar has dissolved. Brush interior of pan frequently with water to prevent syrup from building up a coating. Cook approximately 7 to 10 minutes until mixture has reduced and thickened, and then carefully pour in ½ cup almond milk, whisking vigorously to combine. Add remaining 1 cup almond milk, mix until evenly distributed, and set aside.In a large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and vanilla. Stir in caramel mixture followed by egg whites. Pour filling evenly into pre-baked piecrusts, until about three-quarters full, and bake 1 hour, until center is just set. Cover crust with aluminum foil as necessary, if crust is browning too heavily.

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