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3 Unexpected Seasonings That Elevate Your Thanksgiving Meal

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Let's face it: Turkey is a bland, dry food. It's time we've mixed things up a bit, and we're not just talking about how the turkey is cooked — whether it's roasted, grilled, smoked, or deep-fried, it's still got that same old turkey taste. Instead, we're suggesting that you go all out and create a completely new-and-improved Thanksgiving meal.

If you're in the mood for experimenting, why not break out your spice rack and create a brand new tradition? You'll avoid serving a tired turkey if you try something different this year by incorporating unexpected, international flavors. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Lemongrass

Although lemongrass is often used in Asian cooking, this fresh flavor has made its way into dishes all around the world. Lemongrass, as you've probably guessed, tastes similar to lemon with a mild tang and just a hint of ginger and mint. Aside from its distinct flavor, lemongrass also has a number of health benefits. Rich in antioxidants, lemongrass has been proven to regulate blood pressure, increase blood circulation, and boost the metabolism.

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This fresh herb is a great way to give any recipe a bright and cheerful feel. If you want to stray away from the traditional this Thanksgiving, give this Asian Spiced Thanksgiving Turkey recipe a try.

Coconut Milk

Coconut has gotten itself a bad rep in the health-sphere due to its high saturated fat levels, but coconut milk has actually been found to aid weight loss, reduce heart disease risk, and improve immune function. According to Bruce Fife, ND, the fat found in coconut milk may increase your metabolism. “Medium-chain triglycerides in coconut oil are smaller than other fats and, therefore, digest very quickly — so quickly, in fact, that the body uses them as an immediate source of fuel rather than pack them away in storage inside our fat cells,” Fife wrote.

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Try something new this Thanksgiving and marinate your turkey in a marinade of coconut milk, buttermilk, and pomegranate juice. Who knows, your guest may love this new exotic turn.

Tandoori Paste

The term “tandoori” refers to anything baked in a tandoor, or a cylindrical clay oven. Tandoori cooking is a traditional cooking style used in the Middle East and a great way to add bold flavors to any meat (usually chicken). Most tandoori pastes contain coriander, chili powder, garlic powder, and turmeric, but you can find several variations online.

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Why not surprise your guests with an Indian-infused Thanksgiving dinner with this Tandoori Turkey recipe? Let's be honest, turkey isn't the juiciest bird, so soaking it in a marinade of ginger, chili, and fenugreek may become your new go-to once you try its succulent, flavorful taste. Enjoy!

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