Fresh recipes to liven up traditional Thanksgiving dishes

(BPT) – The friends, the family, the food – Thanksgiving is a beloved holiday enjoyed by both young and old. Beyond the friendly conversation and heartwarming nostalgia, the mouthwatering meal is the star of the day.

Traditional Thanksgiving dishes please the palate, but this year are you up for something new? Taking cues from the classics but incorporating new twists is a surefire way to impress guests.

Need inspiration? These three amazing recipes are easy to make and will fit seamlessly into your Thanksgiving meal, just be prepared for guests to ask for seconds. For more recipe ideas, visit

Baked Sweet Potatoes with Cranberry Gorgonzola Gremolata

Thanksgiving isn’t complete without sweet potatoes and this dish ups the ante with the use of award-winning Salemville Gorgonzola made in the heart of America’s dairyland: Wisconsin. The rich flavor and creamy texture is the perfect pairing for sweet potatoes and tart cranberries.


6 medium sweet potatoes
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1 lemon zested
1 clove garlic, minced finely
3 tablespoons minced pecans
3 tablespoons finely chopped dried cranberries
1 scallion minced
2 ounces Salemville Gorgonzola, crumbled


Preheat oven to 450 F. Place sweet potatoes on cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes. Flip over and return to oven to bake until tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

When cool enough to handle safely, peel sweet potatoes. Place in a medium skillet over low heat with butter, salt and maple syrup for 5 minutes, basting the potatoes with the butter mixture occasionally. Lightly smash the potatoes until there is an even consistency. Hold over low heat.

In a small bowl, toss together parsley, lemon zest, garlic, pecans, cranberries and scallion. Gently fold in the gorgonzola.

Move sweet potatoes to a serving dish and sprinkle with the cranberry blue cheese gremolata. Serve hot.

Browned Butter Basted Beans with Blue Cheese Mushroom Topping

Green beans are prepared in numerous ways for the Thanksgiving holiday. If you prefer fresh over canned, this recipe is sure to please. Savory beans mixed with earthy mushrooms and bold blue cheese produce the ideal side dish for poultry or pork.


1/2 pound fresh green beans, ends trimmed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup cleaned and sliced brown button mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup Salemville Blue cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted


Fill bottom of a medium saucepan with 1-inch of water. Insert vegetable steamer basket into bottom of saucepan, cover with lid and bring water to boil over medium-high heat. When water starts to boil, place green beans in steamer basket; cover with lid. Steam green beans just until fork tender, about 6 to 8 minutes. Pull basket out of saucepan and allow beans to drain; set aside.

While beans are steaming, in a small skillet melt butter over medium heat, swirling skillet often until butter becomes golden brown, about 4 minutes. Watch closely to prevent burning. Hold over low heat to keep warm.

Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and onion and saute for 5 minutes. Add garlic and salt and saute 1 minute more.

To serve, place green beans onto serving plate, drizzle browned butter over beans and spoon mushroom mixture on top. To garnish, sprinkle with blue cheese and toasted pine nuts.

Note: If you prefer to toast the pine nuts yourself, place nuts in a small skillet over medium heat. Shake skillet often until pine nuts are golden all over, about 4 minutes. This can be done ahead of time.

Festive Guava, Gorgonzola & Almond Cake

Every great Thanksgiving meal concludes with a dessert or two. This year, go beyond pumpkin pie and try something a little more exotic. This indulgent recipe features sweet guava, rich almonds and savory Gorgonzola.


2-1/2 cups flour, divided
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
2 eggs
2/3 cup plus
2 tablespoons milk, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
8 ounces guava paste
3/4 cup Salemville Gorgonzola, crumbled
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup sliced almonds


Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour a 9-by-9-inch square baking dish.

In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

In a large bowl, using a mixer, beat butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup sugar; beat until well combined. Add eggs one at a time, beating well in between each addition. Add half of flour mixture; beat. Add 2/3 cup milk, vanilla extract, almond extract and remaining flour mixture. Stir until well combined. Pour into baking dish.

In a microwavable bowl, add guava paste and 2 tablespoons milk. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between each interval, until melted and smooth. Let cool 5 minutes. Stir in Gorgonzola. Drop guava-blue cheese mixture by tablespoons over batter in baking dish. Using a knife, gently swirl the guava mixture. Bake 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup sugar and melted butter. Stir in almonds. Remove cake from oven and sprinkle mixture over top. Return cake to oven for an additional 20 to 30 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on wire rack. Run knife along edges; cool completely. Cut into 16 squares.

Note: If guava paste is unavailable in your local market, you can substitute it with your preferred preserves or jam.

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