If you're still plotting out your menu for Thursday's big meal, consider incorporating some local foods into your holiday repertoire. Guests at the Tuscaloosa (Alabama) Sierra Club's "Cooking Locally for the Holidays" meal last week feasted on roasted winter squash soup, smoked pastured turkey with stone-ground cornmeal and squash dressing, roasted root vegetables and southern cooked greens, and a dessert of pumpkin roulage--all prepared by local chefs and caterers using fresh, local, in-season ingredients.
"Small family farmers are better for the environment," Sierra Club representative Peggie Griffin told the Tuscaloosa News. "It's also better for the local economy, because...when we spend our food dollars with small family farmers, we are keeping money in our community." Added local caterer Walter Flowers, "The locally grown products are much fresher and healthier, too."
For more tips, check out Worldwatch's coverage of "families and individuals [who] have committed to generating one dish, or even their whole holiday meal, from sources within 100 miles of their homes" (the 100-Mile Thanksgiving challenge) and the seasonal ideas for vegetarians over at Grist and the Organic Consumers Association.