What to Eat Before the Turkey Feast

For most, turkey is the main event this month, but what about the other 29 days? To help keep things fresh, here are a few light and healthy, local options.


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Salad from Fresh Cafe & Catering.

Stay in an autumn state of mind at Fresh Cafe & Catering in Cornwall with an order of their Autumn Highlands Salad. Brimming with traditional fall flavors, this dish ties together spinach, apples, pears, beets, red onions, walnuts, and goat cheese — sourced from nearby Edgwick Farm — with a citrus vinaigrette to create a big feast-taste that’s then topped with turkey.  

The Wise Owl Cafe & Curiosities in Saugerties serves up a bounty of locally sourced fare that honors the abundance of the Hudson Valley that we celebrate this time of year. Their popular power plate, The Simone, will prep your belly and build up your strength for the oncoming fete. Steamed scrambled eggs, fresh herbs, and pecorino blend onto a bed of arugula that’s dressed with mustard-shallot vinaigrette and a sprinkling of quinoa.

The Wise Owl Cafe by James Orr

With a section of their bistro menu dedicated to lighter plates, Terrapin Restaurant in Rhinebeck is the perfect place to grab a small bite before the big one. Try the Vegetarian Green Wrap, stuffed with avocado, grilled corn, pico de gallo, chickpeas, and cilantro all wrapped up in a large collard green leaf.

J&J Gourmet photo by Julianne Homola

If you’re choosing to pre-eat on T-day itself, a great choice is Red Hook’s J&J Gourmet Cafe. Here you’ll find a Power Quinoa Salad — a medley of baby greens, dried cranberries and apricots, sunflower seeds, goat cheese, and quinoa — hearty enough to fill you up and curb any of the snacking tendencies you may have before the main show later in the day.

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