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Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...

 
CogitoErgoArmatumSum

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11/16/2012 03:48 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
one dilemma im faced with is my Father has Crohns Disease so he has to watch what he eats.. angry2
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 25147328


Well that's not good. I don't know how you would cook a holiday meal for somebody that is suffering from that.
 Quoting: CogitoErgoArmatumSum


Hes had it my entire life so ive learned what he can and cant have.. in fact he was just released from the hospital earlier this afternoon for a minor obstruction.. he misbehaves on his food choices quite a bit but he knows just how much of what he can have.. but this past time wasnt because he ate what he shouldnt..
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 25147328


I'm sorry to hear that. I hope he is feeling better and that you can find some recipes that he can enjoy with y'all. You should try googling "recipes for Crohn's Disease" There are hundreds of site. Good luck and Happy Thanksgiving.
"A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government." George Washington
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 03:49 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Just buy the turkey already done. Bring it to life with the best roast potatoes ever!!!!! Use the whole oven for potatoes.

Get king edward or maris piper potato

peel and maybe cut in half. I like long wedgy ones rather than roundish ones. Cut the same size

Boil for 8 mins, drain the water and shake the potatoes slightly to rough the edges in a colinder.

Use goose fat, vegtable oil, olive oil or butter.

Id use goose fat or vegetable oil in big deep baking tray, maybe 3/4 inch of oil.

Oven bout 200-210c, put the tray in for a few minutes then lay the potatoes in and scoop some oil over them

This is the beauty, after half hour get a masher and press and flatten the potatoes, not to break, slightly, give them new angles

In a bowl, get a glug of white vinegar, same of olive oil, a bulb of garlic with the cloves just pressed down on so they open a bit, 2 sprigs of rosemary broken up.

Pour this over potatoes, add 2-3 small thumbnail dots of real butter over the potatoes and maybe some orange peel bits broken and thrown over.

Roast for about 30- 45 mins depending how you like.

The vinegar and pressing brings the texture which is crisp, while the other ingredients bring a flavor better than just oil.
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 03:49 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
The Paula Dean recipes are really easy and her food is awesome.
 Quoting: CogitoErgoArmatumSum


Some of her recipes are very bland.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 4428411


Paula Dean the Queen of butter cooking bland food?? HAHA! Thanks for the laugh.
 Quoting: CogitoErgoArmatumSum


It's true. Not every recipe uses "butter," and she doesn't put enough spices in her food.

I say this having lived in Savannah, Georgia and eaten at her restaurant many times before she was famous. Her recipes are bland compared to what she actually cooked back in the day.

Thanks though, for acting like you are the expert on her food.

5a
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11/16/2012 03:50 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
I'd recommend looking into Alton Brown's recipes. I've never been disappointed by any of those, and they are fairly simple.
mopar28m
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11/16/2012 03:52 AM

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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
We've quit cooking turkey for Thanksgiving. I slow cook beef ribs in the crock pot for about 10 hours in BBQ sauce, along with brown rice, lots of finger foods like carrots, celery, different kinds of cheeses, pecan, applie & chcolate pie with ice cream.
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CogitoErgoArmatumSum

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11/16/2012 03:54 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
The Paula Dean recipes are really easy and her food is awesome.
 Quoting: CogitoErgoArmatumSum


Some of her recipes are very bland.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 4428411


Paula Dean the Queen of butter cooking bland food?? HAHA! Thanks for the laugh.
 Quoting: CogitoErgoArmatumSum


It's true. Not every recipe uses "butter," and she doesn't put enough spices in her food.

I say this having lived in Savannah, Georgia and eaten at her restaurant many times before she was famous. Her recipes are bland compared to what she actually cooked back in the day.

Thanks though, for acting like you are the expert on her food.

5a
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 4428411


Well, not everybody likes a lot of spices in their food. And you are welcome, since I am a bit of an expert on her food. I also have been cooking for over 30 yrs, if that means anything. Happy Thanksgiving Smartass.
"A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government." George Washington
ANHEDONIC

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11/16/2012 04:01 AM

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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Turkey



















HOT POCKETS.....

grinning

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WacoKid
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11/16/2012 04:03 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Hello Friends! So..Im 24yo and This is our first Thanksgiving at our new house and im not the best cook.. and i really dont wanna screw this up.. Hell i couldnt make mashed potatos to save my life! (every time i do theyre never done for some reason!)



blwkss
 Quoting: Cassandra 25147328


Why not try this a fully cooked heat and serve turkey ,maybe some stovetop stuffing ..

[link to www.butterball.com]
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:30 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Hello Friends! So..Im 24yo and This is our first Thanksgiving at our new house and im not the best cook.. and i really dont wanna screw this up.. Hell i couldnt make mashed potatos to save my life! (every time i do theyre never done for some reason!)

So for all the folks whos been there done that for many years im looking for fairly simple dishes to cook for 9 people..

Frankly I really dont even know how to cook a turkey! 1dunno1 LoL! Any suggestions on that one too would be most helpful.. Im not really lookin for b.s. responses like "ooohh why celebrate us murdering and stealing from the Natives.." to us this is just a family dinner.. Thanks everyone! Have a good Day/Evening/Night!

blwkss
 Quoting: Cassandra 25147328


Cassandra, don't panic. In truth, cooking is not hard. The main thing is finding a recipe that works, and not attempting new recipes that you haven't attempted before as a general rule.

In your case, you have a little time. That means you practice a little with microsizing a recipe in a one serving portion, and seeing how it turns out. If mashed potatoes are what worried you, then look at someplace like the foodnetwork, and follow the direction to the letter. Don't assume you know anything on your own, but do precisely what it says to do.

Thanksgiving need not be complex. Better to make five good things then ten things that turn out bad. A turkey is not hard as all as long as you follow the directions, thaw it in plenty of time, remove the giblets from the interior, preheat the over, cook it until the thermometer "pops" cover it and uncover it based upon directions to get browning, and then let the poultry rest to carve it.

It takes time, and during that time you can work on other things. Premake somethings since you're a beginner. Don't be foolish and attempt to simultaneously cook five things at once. If you do, something will be under or overdone.

For rolls, why not use some that are premade and in the freezer case. Those merely need to be popped in to be heated.

For gravy, it's simply a matter of purchasing some chicken broth. Next take some butter and flour and make a roux. Then add the broth to it and stir constantly as it thickens. Most people mess up by not making a roux and trying to add flour to broth and it being lumpy. Follow a recipe and you'll see what I mean.

Cranberry sauce is easy to make from scratch. You buy the cranberries, and cook them in boiling water until the "pop" or crack, then add port wine and sugar. However many people don't really care for cranberries. If that's so, then why not make an easy fruit salad, which is only cut up mixed fruit. Picking something delicious like a Golden Pineapple, bananas, stawberries, some kiwi, and mandarin oranges, and people will like the color and sweetness and distinct flavor. It's simple too.

Dressing either has oysters in it or not. It all depends upon personal preference and availability. You simply add them later. A stuffing is very easy to make. You heat up some butter, put in some celery (especially some leaves for flavoring) and onion. This you saute. Then you add in croutons or breading crumbs and water/broth. That's it. It isn't tough.

Pumpkin pie can be earlier. Do people like it? If not, then make something like apple. Pie crust can be purchased, and some of them are quite good. The main thing is to not fill it too full as it gels when it sets. You might have to cover the crusts with tin foil to prevent overcooking at some point in the process. By making it in advance, that ensures you don't need the oven as the turkey is in there.

A good salad is simple. It's merely mixing up some ingredients. Buy something like a spring mix, and then add things like good kalmata olives, sundried tomatoes, some red onion, diced mushrooms, and it'll look spectacular with color and flavor variances.

See it's not hard. You can do it. Don't wait until the day before, as it's madness in the grocery. They run out of things, and then you have to go to multiple stores. Before you go, check and double check your list. Often people forget a spice, and this means a second run to the store at the last minute.

Mulled cider is very simple. If you have apple cider in your town, then it's merely a matter of purchasing the correct spices and heating it. It makes a delicious drink that you can serve guests while you're busy in the kitchen. Let them have their small talk and stay out of your kitchen, unless actally helping. Nothing is worse than when all the guests come in to visit and distract you when so much pressure is on. Accept help. There's little thing to do like dry salad lettuce so the water doesn't thin down salad dressings. Chop veggies. Cut the turkey, etc. I always precarve it. It's a nusiance to carve it at the table, unless that's a big deal. It's way easier.

Let someone make some finger food, otherwise that's one more thing to prepare. Boiled shrimp is very simple. You merely boil it (not too long) in a shrimp boil, then put it in ice to chill. Then serve it with cocktail sauce.

The idea is to whet (sharpen their appetite) not fill them on appetizers. Even when you serve the meal, you want people to hope there's more, because then you serve dessert. If everyone is stuffed, they don't enjoy the meal as much.

Having special coffee and egg custard is nice after. If you want to be bold, having an afterdinner drink like Grappa shows you're elegant. It's simple a little fortified wine from Italy. It's served in little portions.

There, that's not so hard, is it?
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:35 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
I am not going to give you recipes or tell you what to cook, but here is my advice.

DO NOT cook the turkey on a low heat for like six hours or whatever. This is shit that hillbilly mom and pop cooks use, it's garbage. Low and slow is not the way.

The real chefs, the places that are known for some of the worlds best foods, cook turkey HOT and FAST. I am talking like 500 degrees for 30-40 minutes, then 350 for an hour-two depending on the size. The quick heat gives it a nice shell, but not crunchy, this shell holds all of the juice and moisture i. Then the slow cook finishes the insides.

There are tactics that are beneficial to this method, but use Google yourself.
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:42 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Oh and don't be a cheap fuck. Buy a worth while thermometer and stick in the thick area of the white meat while it cooks, and at an angle that you can see it easily when you open the oven. Once it reaches your desired temp, pull it out.

Putting your faith in a little white piece of shit to pop is a deal breaker for quality turkey.
Tethered Soul

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11/16/2012 04:44 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Swanson's Turkey Pot Pies.
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:59 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Thank you all for your advice. Its nice to get so many suggestions!

Im hittin the sack for the nite but PLEASE keep them coming!

I have a nice long page of notes to help me out!

The fine Folks at GLP are always so knowledgeable!
Lindalee

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11/16/2012 05:12 AM

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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
A lot of good suggestions in this thread ! hf

Another option is to buy a roaster oven (on sale at Walmart right now) that will free up your oven for side dishes etc
buy a bottle of Kitchen Bouquet to brown the turkey , it's also good for gravy, baked beans etc

Make deviled eggs the day before, celery sticks stuffed with creamed cheese, buy a couple of cheese balls and some good crackers etc

As others have suggested, you can't go wrong with the frozen pies, they are great, no need to stress trying to make pies with all the other things you'll be doing, good luck and Happy Thanksgiving !

Also : [link to www.yummly.com]


hf
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Bowyn Aerrow

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11/16/2012 05:26 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
If you cannot take potatoes and make them in to mashed potatoes, then I fear that the skill sets needed to make a Thanksgiving Turkey and all the trimmings is well beyond your keen.

"Our" New house - am I to be lead to think there is a husband? If so what are his cooking skills?

The way my sister-in-law has 'cooked' for 50 people each year is by delegating tasks, for instance I am the pie baker and been the pie baker for about a century now (feels like it), Her husband BBq's the Turkey, others bring the Mashed Potatoes, the String Beans, the Stuffing is from three sources, everything is brought by other people.

So what does she do? She organizes and does the clean up.
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Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 09:21 AM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Cooking turkey is the easiest!

I remember my 1st turkey. I didn't know breast side from bac side. Ended up baking it up side down and it was fabulous.....all t he juices basted the breast inside out and that was the best turkey I ever made

Have fun with this and BE thankful!
Blue1966

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11/16/2012 02:28 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
It sounds like you are severely culinarily challenged so, the safest solution is to buy one of those pre cooked Thanksgiving dinners at the store, take it all home and heat it up according to the directions.

Now you might want 2 cans of cranberry sauce and a quick fruit salad - just get a large can a fruit cocktail and a container of Cool Whip, drain the fruit cocktail, put it and the cool whip in a bowl and stir it all up - simple no cook desert.
Blue
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11/16/2012 02:42 PM

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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Cooking turkey is the easiest!

I remember my 1st turkey. I didn't know breast side from bac side. Ended up baking it up side down and it was fabulous.....all t he juices basted the breast inside out and that was the best turkey I ever made

Have fun with this and BE thankful!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 25672410


I did a turkey like that once

lol

it was pretty darn good!
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 03:57 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Cooking turkey is the easiest!

I remember my 1st turkey. I didn't know breast side from bac side. Ended up baking it up side down and it was fabulous.....all t he juices basted the breast inside out and that was the best turkey I ever made

Have fun with this and BE thankful!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 25672410


I did a turkey like that once

lol

it was pretty darn good!
 Quoting: Dr. Acula



Im so doing this for sure.. thanks everyone for the suggestions! Im much less nervous now..

You guys are the best!!!hf
Laura Bow

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11/16/2012 04:02 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Are you used to cooking a big quantity at a time? If not, you may need some help. Green bean casserole seems to be a hit and it's so easy my daughter would make it at 8 years old. Turkey is really not that difficult but definitely don't overcook it, a lot of people tend to make dry turkey, yuck! Use some juice, beer, or liquor to help flavor it.
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:11 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
bump for more suggestions... keep them comming folks!! Theres a shit ton of pins right now so I dont want this gettin lost in the chaos!
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:16 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Are you used to cooking a big quantity at a time? If not, you may need some help. Green bean casserole seems to be a hit and it's so easy my daughter would make it at 8 years old. Turkey is really not that difficult but definitely don't overcook it, a lot of people tend to make dry turkey, yuck! Use some juice, beer, or liquor to help flavor it.
 Quoting: Laura Bow


This is OP from my phone not my laptop...

im used to cooking for about 3 or 4.. and to the one who asked about my hubs cooking skills... yea im a better cook than him... I will have one other helping hand.. but with my pops havin crohns its kinda hard to pick.. but he knows what he can and cant have so he usually picks thru whats available.. I know he cannot have skins and corn and liquor and not a lot of high fiber.. and vegs have to be cooked so their partially broken down already so his tract wont have to work so hard..

Keep em commin! Theres been fabulous suggestions and tips! You guys are awesome!!!
Laura Bow

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11/16/2012 04:22 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Are you used to cooking a big quantity at a time? If not, you may need some help. Green bean casserole seems to be a hit and it's so easy my daughter would make it at 8 years old. Turkey is really not that difficult but definitely don't overcook it, a lot of people tend to make dry turkey, yuck! Use some juice, beer, or liquor to help flavor it.
 Quoting: Laura Bow


This is OP from my phone not my laptop...

im used to cooking for about 3 or 4.. and to the one who asked about my hubs cooking skills... yea im a better cook than him... I will have one other helping hand.. but with my pops havin crohns its kinda hard to pick.. but he knows what he can and cant have so he usually picks thru whats available.. I know he cannot have skins and corn and liquor and not a lot of high fiber.. and vegs have to be cooked so their partially broken down already so his tract wont have to work so hard..

Keep em commin! Theres been fabulous suggestions and tips! You guys are awesome!!!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1928741


What are you planning on cooking for Thanksgiving? It would probably be a good idea to make a list, and cook some the night before if possible.
tandym

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11/16/2012 04:25 PM

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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
A new favorite in our house since 2006....

Corn Casserole

1 box jiffy corn muffin mix
1 cup sour cream
1 stick of butter, melted
1.5 cans of whole kernel corn, drained
Shredded cheddar cheese (about 1.5 cups)

In a bowl, combine corn muffin mix, sour cream, melted butter, 1.5 cans of whoel kernel corn & half of the shredded cheddar cheese. Mix well until all of the cornmeal is 'wet'.

Grease a 8x8 or 9x9 sized casserole or cake pan and pour & spread the mixture into it. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Top with remainder of shredded cheddar cheese and bake a few minutes longer until cheese is melty & a little brown on top. remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

OMG awesome. Slightly sweet. NOM.
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:30 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Are you used to cooking a big quantity at a time? If not, you may need some help. Green bean casserole seems to be a hit and it's so easy my daughter would make it at 8 years old. Turkey is really not that difficult but definitely don't overcook it, a lot of people tend to make dry turkey, yuck! Use some juice, beer, or liquor to help flavor it.
 Quoting: Laura Bow


This is OP from my phone not my laptop...

im used to cooking for about 3 or 4.. and to the one who asked about my hubs cooking skills... yea im a better cook than him... I will have one other helping hand.. but with my pops havin crohns its kinda hard to pick.. but he knows what he can and cant have so he usually picks thru whats available.. I know he cannot have skins and corn and liquor and not a lot of high fiber.. and vegs have to be cooked so their partially broken down already so his tract wont have to work so hard..

Keep em commin! Theres been fabulous suggestions and tips! You guys are awesome!!!
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 1928741


What are you planning on cooking for Thanksgiving? It would probably be a good idea to make a list, and cook some the night before if possible.
 Quoting: Laura Bow


All I know it turkey for sure... lol.. thats why I started this thread to get some other ideas along w tips on how to not fuck this up.. lol.. I do know im going to the store in the morning so ill have to decide and make a list before then..

I love all the great delicious sounding dishes!
tandym

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11/16/2012 04:30 PM

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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Cook your turkey in one of those oven roasting bags, just follow the directions. It will not turn out dry and cooks so much faster.

As for mashed potatoes, poke them with a fork while they're cooking. If the fork breaks them apart easily, they're done. Add some sour cream as you're "mashing" because it adds a nice flavor.

Frozen cranberries are much nicer than canned. Again, follow the directions (on the bag). It's easy.

Make as much ahead as possible and freeze/refrigerate. That will reduce your stress level.

Can you tell I miss Thanksgiving dinners?

hf
 Quoting: AWFEKKIT


I used the oven bag method for the first time last year and I am SOLD.... best turkey I ever made.

As for potatoes, I cut them into large chunks and steam them in my vegetable steamer (or in a steamer pan on the stove). Then I put them in my kitchen aid mixer with parmesan cheese, sour cream, butter and salt & pepper and turn the thing on. My family likes them just fine 'rustic' style (meaning a few lumps and I leave the skins on).
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:31 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Here is a simple tip for you about mashed potato.


Do NOT cut your potato too small.



If you cut your peeled potato into small pieces and then boil them they will get water logged and they will cook uneven.

Some of the potato will cook faster then others and you will have a lumpy gummy mess.


Instead cut a large potato into large 1 to 2 inch cubes.


The potato will cook more evenly and it will not become water logged as easy because of less surface area to the potato starch.


They will still cook in the same time so it will not take your any longer to do it this way. And its actually less work while getting a better end result.



Stick a fork in a chunk of potato to see if its done.

You want the fork to go in with some resistance but not too much. You want the potato to sort of break apart with the fork.

But if you take it too far they will be overcooked.


Its like cooking pasta, you want it just done.
Guenwyfar

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11/16/2012 04:34 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
Dunk a turkey into a vat of boiling oil for a few minutes. Slam it's greasy carcass on the table and gnaw chunks of flesh off while grunting like a Neanderthal.

Take some potatos and chuck them in the microwave until they're radioactive. Proceed to smash them with your feet (yell enthusiastically while you do this part). Melt some butter with a blow torch, then dunk that shit in butter and ram it down your gullet.

Take some wonder bread and dump all kinds of gravy and grease on it then mush it together with your hands. You've got stuffing.

My family loves when I cook for Thanksgiving.
 Quoting: Generation Doom



chuckle
Guenwyfar

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Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 04:51 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
I can't believe this kind of topic is discussed here.

Especially given that so many people have NO family, little to no money, and maybe have no food or are forced to eat once a day.

Has America learned NOTHING?

WHY are so many people still, in 2012, so damned materialistic, such slaves to consumerism and traditions and the "do as others do" mentality?

WHY do you find it necessary to "celebrate" some holiday just because you're told to do so?

DO you enjoy making the retailers richer?

Do you enjoy being a sheeple?

Are you so weak that you have to have one designated day set aside to be thankful?

When all of you get together with your big extended family (most of whom you probably loathe all the other days of the year) and you sit down at the big table to pig out on that Butterball turkey that was horribly ABUSED before being murdered and as you all stuff your faces with too much food and rich desserts - THINK about all those who are not so privileged AND those who have sensibly and smartly taken a stand against these outdated and selfish traditions.
Anonymous Coward
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11/16/2012 05:02 PM
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Re: Thanksgiving Suggestions for a newbie cook...
turkey is bland and disgusting and played out.

get two guinea fowl and a few quail. roast them in a 190 degree oven for 20 minutes per pound and 20 extra then remove them and wrap them in foil and dish towels for twenty minutes. the meat will be so tender and juicy.

serve with cloved, peppered ham and stuffing.

you could make a nice parsnip or celeriac puree the day before and reheat.

you could mix quince jelly with cranberry sauce and some fresh orange zest for an accompaniment.

for green veg, lay on a rocket salad, some steamed fine haricot beans and maybe some shredded sprouts with chestnuts.

serve with bordeaux rouge of course. good stuff if you have the coin, but 2005 cotes de bourg or blaye will do if you dont.

happy thanksgiving, be thankful there is french cuisine and wine to save you!
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