Thanksgiving is a week away, but I’m ready now.
Yes, I know it’s too early to be craving my mama’s green beans and buttery biscuits. So I’ve been looking for interesting twists on the Thanksgiving standards around town. Vegetarians know — sweet potato tempura rolls happen. Go to Friends Sushi in midtown and see for yourself.
Here’s a sampling of how other local restaurants and bars are remixing the holiday side dishes:
Yam & Candied Pecan Ice Cream
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That’s right: sweet potato ice cream. Arctic snap, who? When I walked into Glacé and saw the words “candied pecan,” I knew I had to taste it.
Listen here, friends: If you like sweet potato pie, you will like this ice cream. A scoop is only $2, and it will give you that fix you need until you can make it to Granny’s house. Indulge at Glacé Ice Cream, 4960 Main St. or 4535 W. 119th St. in Leawood. GlaceIceCream.com
Technically, Thomas Restaurant calls this tall drink of holiday spirit the 1815 Martini, but to me it’s the only acceptable form of cranberry sauce. I typically pass on that Thanksgiving dish; it’s not my thing. But cranberry-infused vodka shaken right with Cointreau and lime juice makes me give thanks for this tangy, sweet cocktail ($10). Order one and tip your bartender at Thomas, 1815 W. 39th St. ThomasKC.com
Macaroni & Cheese Bites
I went to Smokin’ Guns BBQ to try the green beans, but I’m about my macaroni and cheese, and I saw something on the menu that deserved a double take: Mac & Cheese Bites. Basically, they look like a pile of chicken nuggets. Except you bite into the breading and it’s all mac and cheese. My niece would love them. You might, too. For $2.50, it’s worth trying. As a side to the glorious brisket sandwich? Just do it at Smokin’ Guns BBQ, 1218 Swift St., North Kansas City. SmokinGunsBBQ.com
Fried Green Beans
At Screenland Armour, movies might be the main draw, but the food is good. Don’t even think about popcorn. Get a basket of fried green beans instead. These things are so good I have stopped by just to order them to-go. What’s not to love about perfectly seasoned green beans, fried? At $6 a basket, this is comfort food on the cheap. And hey, it’s vegetables! Get yours at Screenland Armour, 408 Armour Road in North Kansas City. Screenland.com/armour