Thanksgiving Side Recipes

Terry John Zila, creator of JohnJeanJuan, cooked up some tasty Thanksgiving side recipes you’ll want to make this holiday.

Gingered Brown Sugar Sautéed Carrots

1 pound carrots, peeled and julienned. (for tool Terry showed, click here).
4 ounces unsalted butter
1 tablespoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
Kosher salt and ground black pepper

  1. In a non-stick pan, melt the unsalted butter over medium high heat and cook until it begins to bubble.
  2. Add the ginger and brown sugar and stir to combine.
  3. Increase heat to high and add the carrots. Stir the carrots into the butter mixture and cook just until heated through, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Shallots

4 cups vegetable oil
6 ounces shallots, peeled and sliced 1/16 inch thick, separated into rings
Kosher salt
2 cups milk
3 cups water
1 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
¼ cup chicken stock
6 slices bacon, cooked and coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

1. Heat the oil in a deep fat fryer or high sided saucepan to 350°F. Fry the shallots in
batches until crisp and golden. Remove fried shallots from the oil and drain on
paper towels. Season with generously with salt and set aside.

2. In a large saucepan, bring the milk, water, sugar and ½ teaspoon salt to a boil.
Add the Brussels sprouts and blanch until just tender, or about 3 to 4 minutes.
Drain and set aside.

3. In a 12-inch skillet, melt the butter and olive oil. Add the garlic and sauté just until beginning to color.

4. Add the Brussels sprouts and the chicken stock and heat until stock begins to simmer. Add the bacon and sauté to heat through. Add the chopped parsley and stir to distribute.

5. Transfer the sprouts to a serving dish and garnish with fried shallots. Serve immediately.

Spicy Asian Green Beans


1 pound Green Beans, blanched until just tender crisp. Do not overcook ¼ cup unsalted butter
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
¼ cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon chili flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

  1. Melt the butter in a skillet. Add the soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar and the chili flakes and stir until brown sugar has melted and the mixture is smooth.
  2. Add the blanched green beans and toss to coat. Cook until thoroughly heated.
  3. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Summer Vegetable Gratin with Parmesan and Thyme


4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large white or yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced
1 ½ pounds roma tomatoes, cut into ¼ inch slices and drained
¾ pound green zucchini, cut into ¼ inch slices on the diagonal
¾ pound yellow summer squash, cut into ¼ inch slices on the diagonal
¼ cup fresh thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat 2 tablespoon of the olive oil and the butter over medium heat in a 12-inch skillet. Add the onions and sauté, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and golden brown.

2. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Oil the bottom of a shallow 2-quart casserole.

3. Spread the cooked onions evenly over the bottom of the oiled casserole dish and sprinkle with one tablespoon of the thyme.

4. Set out 2 mixing bowls. Place the yellow zucchini squash in one and the green zucchini in the other. In each bowl, add one tablespoon of olive oil, 2 tablespoons of thyme and ½ teaspoon salt and toss to completely coat the vegetables.

To assemble the gratin:

5. Starting at one end of the baking dish, lay a slightly overlapping layer of tomatoes across the width of the dish. Sprinkle with a little of the cheese. Then lay a row of the yellow zucchini in the same manner over the row of the tomato slices, leaving about 1/3 of the tomato row exposed to provide color contrast in the finished product. Sprinkle this layer with a bit of the cheese and repeat with the green zucchini. Repeat the process until all the vegetables are used or until the baking dish is filled, whichever comes first.

6. Season the assembled casserole with freshly ground pepper and drizzle 1 ½ tablespoons of the olive oil over the gratin. Combine the remaining cheese and thyme and sprinkle evenly over gratin. Bake until well browned and bubbling, about 60 minutes. Allow to rest for about 10 minutes before serving.

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