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The Student News Site of Our Lady of Good Counsel High School

The Talon

The Student News Site of Our Lady of Good Counsel High School

The Talon

Traditional Recipes from Around the World for Thanksgiving

Victoria Shes via Unspalsh
The flavors of Thanksgiving are as varied as the people who celebrate.

With the fall leaves changing color and Thanksgiving quickly approaching, it’s no doubt that we’ve picked up on the quintessential autumn tastes: pumpkin spice, cinnamon, and of course, turkey and all the fixings. In our revelry and celebration of the season, it is also important to honor and recognize the history of our country as a melting pot of cultures. This Thanksgiving, we encourage you to try something new – and we’ve got some great recipes for you to try.

Wojapi Sauce

Most traditional Thanksgiving spreads include cranberry sauce; like the tart and sweet condiment that many love, Wojapi sauce is made with local and often wild berries. It’s origins are found with the Lakota tribe of South Dakota, and is perfect to pour over meats, vegetables, or corn-based dishes.

Although the recipe has often made with chokeberries, native to the Lakota tribe’s lands, it can be made with any of your favorites, including blackberries, raspberries, cranberries, or even strawberries!

  1. Measure out 4 cups of berries. You can use all the same berry or a combination of them.
  2. Place the berries in a saucepan with ½ cup of water and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the berries break down and form a thick sauce. 
  3. Taste the sauce and see if you need to sweeten it. Sweeten the sauce with either maple syrup or honey.

Pumpkin Empanadas

This is fun twist on a classic Mexican empanada, stuffed with the iconic fall pumpkin. Empanadas are Latin-American pastries with baked or fried dough stuffed with sweet or savory fillings. You can try out this exciting version, or experiment with your favorite flavors too – the world is your oyster when it comes to exploring empanadas. We think you’ll love these little pockets of autumn magic!


For the dough

1 ¼ cup water

2 ¼ teaspoon active dry yeast

¾ cups granulated sugar divided

4 ¼-½ cups all-purpose flour

2 ½ teaspoon pumpkin spice

½ teaspoon fine salt

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 eggs, divided, at room temperature

For the filling

1 (15-oz) can pure pumpkin puree

¾ cup dark brown sugar (or piloncillo)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon pumpkin spice


  1. Grease the inside of a large bowl with butter or oil, and line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Heat water in a small bowl or cup for 10-20 seconds until it reaches 105°F-110°F. Mix in yeast, 1 tablespoon sugar and loosely cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let it sit for 5 minutes. If the mixture is bubbly or frothy, that means the yeast is alive and thriving. Continue to the next step. If the mixture hasn’t really changed at all, throw the mixture out and start again with a new packet of yeast. (I recommend using a thermometer to make sure your water isn’t too hot, otherwise it could kill the yeast.)
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a regular large bowl), add the flour, remaining sugar, pumpkin spice, and salt. Mix together to combine.
  4. Add the melted butter and 1 egg. Mix together again to lightly combine.
  5. Add in the yeast mixture and knead in the stand mixture using the dough hook for 6-8 minutes (or by hand), until the dough is smooth and elastic. The dough should be slightly tacky, but not completely sticky. If it is sticky, add in more flour 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough is no longer completely sticky.
  6. Place the dough in the prepared bowl, cover loosely with a sheet of plastic wrap, and let it rise in a warm place for 2 hours, or until the dough has about doubled in size. (I like to let mine rise on top of the fridge.)
  7. While the dough is rising, make the filling: Add the pumpkin puree, dark brown sugar, vanilla extract, and pumpkin spice to a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir together to combine and cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8. Remove from heat, transfer to a bowl, and set aside until ready to use.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Divide the dough into 16 equal pieces and shape into balls.
  10. On a lightly floured surface, roll each ball into a 6-7 inch circle. Place a heaping tablespoon of the pumpkin filling onto each flattened dough circle. Fold one side over and pinch the sides together using your index finger until the empanada is fully sealed (see photos in blog post for example). You can also press the edges together using the tines of a fork instead of your fingers. As long as the empanadas are sealed, you’re good to go.
  11. Transfer the empanadas to the prepared baking sheets. In a small bowl, whisk the remaining 1 egg. Using a pastry brush, brush the tops of the empanadas with the egg wash.
  12. Place in the oven and bake for 23-25 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.
  13. Transfer to a wire rack and let sit for 30 minutes to cool before serving. 

Maple-Roasted Rutabaga

You’ve got a cornucopia of vegetables on your Thanksgiving table, but rutabaga probably hasn’t made an appearance yet. The incredibly tasty root vegetable, especially delicious when roasted with maple-syrup, is a popular addition to meals in Finland (it’s often called “swede” in other parts of the world). If you want to give your mashed potatoes a family friend, invite this recipe to your table.


  1. 1.5 lb rutabaga (about 3 small rutabaga) 
  2. 2 tablespoon olive oil
  3. 3 tablespoon maple syrup 
  4. A pinch of salt and pepper for seasoning
  5. 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  6. 1 tablespoon fresh thyme (for garnish – optional)


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200ºC/390ºF. Place a roasting tin the oven to heat up.
  2. Peel the rutabagas and cut them into large chunks.
  3. Place the rutabagas in a and dress with the olive oil, maple syrup and dried thyme.
  4. Add in a good sprinkle of salt and pepper and toss to combine well.
  5. Spoon the rutabagas into the roasting tin, reserving any dressing that has pooled at the bottom of the bowl.
  6. Roast in the oven, for 25 minutes, then drizzle over the reserved dressing and cook for a further 15-20 minutes until crisp and golden.
  7. Serve with a sprinkling of fresh thyme (Or chives works well too!)