“At every gathering these days, there will be a vegetarian,” says Renato Poliafito. Stefania Rubicondo, a baker at Brooklyn’s Baked and its resident non-meat-eater, brought these wonderful individual pies, filled with a mix of sweet celery root, brussels sprouts and parsnips in a sage-infused cream sauce and topped with tender biscuits made with roasted sweet potato.
At Akasha in L.A., chef Akasha Richmond prepares a sweet-and-spicy glaze for ham using house-made pomegranate-jalapeño jelly. An easier alternative: doctoring store-bought jalapeño jelly with pomegranate juice.
Beer Pairing: Try a barrel-aged brown ale such as Dog Fish Head’s Palo Santo Marron. The oak gives the beer a rich sweetness that complements the fruity glaze and combats the spice of the jalapeño jelly.
At Suzanne Goin and Caroline Styne’s Tavern in Los Angeles, chef Julie Robles makes this vegetarian gratin in individual dishes with a topping of candied pepitas (pumpkin seeds). This version is for one big gratin garnished with plain toasted pumpkin seeds.
Beer Pairing: Crisp-but-creamy Belgian-style white ale: Ommegang Witte.
Chef Lulzim Rexhepi cuts turkey legs crosswise before simmering them first in broth, then in a delightful Thai red-curry sauce. This version skips the broth. To simplify the recipe more, have your butcher cut the drumsticks, or just cook them whole.
Jose Garces prepares this turkey in the same style as a traditional Yucatàn dish called cochinita pibil, a slow-roasted pork marinated in citrus and annatto paste (made from achiote seeds, the condiment adds an orange hue to foods). Brining and marinating the bird make it especially succulent.
Beer Pairing: Gueuze, a type of aged lambic, has sour and citrusy flavors. Try Cantillon’s earthy version.
A good recipe for chicken-liver mousse is critical, says Shawn McClain, “because when a recipe’s bad, it’s really bad.” His version is supremely silky and light, with a lovely hint of apple from Calvados. He serves the mousse with pickled red onion and toasted baguette slices alongside, so guests can assemble their own crostini.
Beer Pairing: Hoppy beer with fine bubbles: Deus Brut des Flandres.
Quinoa is definitely a superfood: A grain-like seed, it’s a “complete“ protein containing all eight essential amino acids (another plus: it cooks much more quickly than most grains). To create a terrific vegetarian main course, Michael Symon of Cleveland’s Lola tosses quinoa with arugula, apple, raisins and fresh herbs, then spoons the salad into a halved baked squash (a great source of iron and vitamins A and C).
Beer Pairing: Citrusy Belgian IPA: Noblesse Extra Ordinaire.