Italians do not celebrate Thanksgiving, which is typically popular with people living in the U.S. Many Italians seem a bit perplexed by the holiday, referring to it as "La Festa del Tacchino" ("The Turkey Party"), as though that were its only purpose. But even though they don't celebrate it, there are many Italian fall dishes that would work very well as part of a Thanksgiving feast, or can even be used to substitute elements of it. Get inspired by the recipes below.
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Olive all'Ascolana (Stuffed and Fried Green Olives)
A delicious finger food, stuffed olives are great to nibble on before a festive holiday meal.
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Classic Sicilian Arancini
A classic from Sicily, these balls of saffron-scented rice, stuffed with meat sauce and peas, then breaded and fried, would make a fantastic starter for any holiday meal.
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Italian Pickled and Oil-Packed Vegetables
Homemade pickles would be a great antipasto or side dish to lighten a heavy holiday meal. They also make a great hostess gift!
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Butternut Squash Ravioli With White-Wine Sauce
Sweet butternut squash, hazelnuts, and a delicious creamy white wine sauce make a beautiful starter for Thanksgiving dinner.Continue to 5 of 12 below.
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Turkey-Breast Roulade with Mushroom Stuffing
For a different way to do turkey, try this quick-and-easy Northern Italian recipe for rolled-up turkey breast filled with mushrooms, slices of ham, and Parmigiano cheese. A perfect solution for a smaller gathering or for those hampered by a tiny kitchen.
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Dinner rolls are kind of boring—how about garlic bread instead? Garlic bread made with butter and French bread is an Italian-American invention, which makes it perfect for an Italian-style American feast!
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Lasagne alla Bolognese
On your Thanksgiving table, this Italian classic could become a fantastic side dish.
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A hearty stew made with white beans, vegetables, and day-old Tuscan bread, a bowl of homemade ribollita will warm guests right up.Continue to 9 of 12 below.
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Porcini Mushroom Risotto
Make an earthy fall risotto that would make a perfect Thanksgiving first course or side dish.
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Minestra Maritata (Italian Wedding Soup)
This popular soup with greens and tiny meatballs is actually not for weddings, but it would be a great addition to any holiday meal.
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These are a great before- or after-dinner snack, or you can use them in your turkey stuffing, or toss them with roasted Brussels sprouts for a toothsome side dish.
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This homemade liqueur—made with green walnuts, spices, and coffee beans—would make a fantastic after-dinner accompaniment to pumpkin, apple, or pecan pie.