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Do you have any preparation tips for Thanksgiving rookies?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on November 15, 2006

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“Look on the Internet for all the recipes, or go eat at your sister-in-law’s like I do.”


sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

Is there really only one answer with no picture? That's what I'm seeing.

My tip? Let someone else do the cooking. I definitely don't prepare food; I leave that for other members of my family. You know, the ones who are competent in a kitchen.

As to yesterday's Michigan/Ohio State post: I am not surprised Michigan's dean warned students about traveling to Columbus this weekend. Amused, but not surprised. A friend of mine recently moved to Columbus from Ann Arbor, and he is making a point to change his license plates before the game so his car doesn't suffer any damage.

Though some of the jokes are fun, I actually hate that the potential for game-related violence is a news item at all. It's bad for football.

Aileen Dingus 11 years, 6 months ago

audvidartist- GROSS! lol Living in Nevada for as long as I did, I spent quite a few holidays at casino buffets. I'd recommend fasting for the day if that's your only opportunity to eat.

My preparations- I've ordered my bread for stuffing from Wheatfield's and I'm buying my cranberries tonight so that I can make Mama Stamberg's Cranberry Relish. YUM.

audvisartist 11 years, 6 months ago

Forget cooking... hit the buffet at Harrahs!

Kelly Powell 11 years, 6 months ago

If you never made a recipe before, using your relatives as guinia pigs is a bad idea.

trinity 11 years, 6 months ago

get plenty of sleep in the days preceeding turkey day; you're gonna need it. ;)

and yeah, blue-don't drink the whole box o'wine!

oh-and for all the zealots who want to be at the stores the day after, at 5 freakin'o'clock in the morning?? inject bird with extra triptophane (sp??)! ;)

tyger_lily 11 years, 6 months ago

Make sure you allow plenty time for the turkey to defrost. It is a major bummer to pull a turkey-sicle out of the fridge Thanksgiving morning.

enochville 11 years, 6 months ago

Butterball Turkeys and Honey Baked Ham.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Gootsie, as per last night's question, I think it was Flower's estranged great, great-nephew. RI, amazingly, the hubby did not stink (after his shower).

Thanksgiving tips: When butchering your own turkey, make sure to remove the craw before baking.

I can't wait to hear Hannibal's answer, and where the heck is inmate??? Solitary?

acg 11 years, 6 months ago

Start the day before. Get all of your dessert baking done on Wednesday, and bake twice as much as you'll need because if your husband and kids are like mine, it won't last until Thanksgiving. Cook the turkey overnight, slowly, on a very low temperature so it's basically done Thanksgiving morning. That frees up your oven for breads, stuffing, yams, etc. on Thanksgiving Day. Remember to buy all of your liquor on Tuesday night so you'll be prepared and won't have to make that pesky trip out. Oh, and Jack Daniels is your friend. At least he's always been a good turkey day friend to me. :)

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

TOB: OSU tends to take football a bit more seriously than Michigan, only in the sense that football spawns violence and bad behavior. Michigan is very intense about the OSU game, but I have spoken to OSU fans who said no matter what, they felt safe in Ann Arbor, even wearing their OSU gear. In contrast, many Michigan fans who travel to Columbus say they actually do fear for their personal safety. On the pro side of things, I know of one U-M sports photographer who photographed one UM-OSU game in Columbus and vowed never to go for another one, no matter how much they offered to pay.

In a very small defense of the Buckeyes, it's a different setting there. Michigan is set in a real college town; OSU is set in a big city. So there is much more of an unsavory element that is all too happy to elevate the problem.

But that is only a small defense. This behavior is just too much a part of the culture in Ohio -- Columbus was just as unfriendly last year when Texas came to town. Big games bring out the worst.

(So I don't sound like a biased jerk, let me say that I know Ann Arbor and Michigan fans are far from problem-free. But most would admit that Columbus and OSU have some pretty serious issues when it comes to football-related behavior.)

And yeah, ticket prices are absurd. I was fortunate enough to acquire tickets for last year's game in Ann Arbor for face value. But most years, I just can't afford to get into that game. It's usually too expensive when Notre Dame comes to town, too.

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

I'm like Christy . . . I go to my sister-in-law's house. Thanksgiving is a family gathering time for us, young'uns, old'uns, and everyone in between :) After dinner we oftimes storm a movie theatre to catch one of the new releases that are suitable for family viewing.

enoch, I like the spiral cut Honey Baked Ham! Yummy and easy to serve :)

Several years ago my daughter, a freshman at the time, was a member of the KU Marching Band. They went to Manhattan for a football game, in uniform, to support the Hawks. Their bus doors were pelleted with fruit whenever they tried to exit. They were unable to do so until the police arrived and cleared the way for them to go into the stadium. The KU-KSU rivalry is still alive and well. However, the trauma was relatively short-lived, she married a KSU alum :) It's nice to have an anonymous board on which I can admit that :P

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

i_p, come on up here, everyone at our dinner will treat you like royalty -- they will feel so guilty for not remembering whose child/spouse/other you are that they will never ask :)

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

sister_sue: you mean Flower the skunk? Whew, for a moment I thought you meant Flower the meerkat! That would just be wrong...

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Ceal, I empathize with your daughter. I know what it's like to be in a crimson/blue/purple marriage. Our children popped out one of each. (There is still time to sway the purple one.)

Just thought of a Thanksgiving Day necessity, and since it's "National clean out your fridge day," it's pretty good timing, as well. Clean out the fridge (if it's cold enough outside, you can put the beer just outside the door). You need LOTS of room for those leftovers! And you'll want to wipe down the shelves as well so those nasty "white glove test" friends and relatives have nothing at which to turn up their nose.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

RI, pull out dictionary...look up craw. Here, I'll save you the trouble:

Craw 1. the crop of a bird or insect

Now, I would argue that a "crop" is what a farmer puts in the field. A "craw" can only be one thing. You should know that, being a backwards Iowa boy! :P

Ceal, where is there a meerkat named Flower? Have I not watched enough Disney?

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

prospector, my computer does need replacing, but that has nothing to do with OTS. But thanks for the confirmation. I am particularly disappointed because I wanted to see if there were any good OTS occupations today.

H_Lecter 11 years, 6 months ago

Rookies definitely are more tender than the older ones. Wear ear protection though, because they tend to be louder screamers.

Kontum1972 11 years, 6 months ago

stuffed sperm whale...with a nice sperm sauce and carrots..yumm

Sigmund 11 years, 6 months ago

acg sounds like she has done Thanksgiving before so I suggest fishing for an invite to her place....

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

RI, you just said "schmeckin, came, rubber, on my back, spasms, and acid" all in the same post. I was so proud of you...but then you had to go and throw in "peregrinated." Word snob! :)

Bone777 11 years, 6 months ago

I recommend the Swansons Hungry Man. Turkey, stuffing, tators, gravy, and a cake thingy with cranberry. 25 minutes in the oven and Yuuuuummmmmmyyyyyyy!!!!!!

ms_canada 11 years, 6 months ago

I_P - here is an alternative to the beer and chili. Just hop on over to Lakeside, Calif. (just a bit east of San Diego) and you can have a lovely turkey dinner with my sister and I and her family. We would love to have you. I am heading down there on Friday morning for a 10 day visit with Sis. I'll be so glad to leave the snow behind. We already have more than a foot of the stuff. Yuk!!! Tips for rookies - never try a new recipe for guests. A friend tried a new roasting method for turkey. Put it in oven frozen for 2 hours at 500*. Not good. outside done, inside still bloody and raw.

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

Py, I figured you were joking, but in the back of my mind I was really hoping there was a Nadine Hodie.

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

sweet_sue:) Meerkat Manor is a riot!! A soap opera as only research on "social" animals can produce, narrated by Sean Astin. It's on Animal Planet, Friday evenings 7:00 - 7:30. Harvard student research in the Kalahari Desert, 3 clans of meerkats, the main group is the "Whiskers," they control a two square mile area of the dessert. A matriarchial society, their dominant female is "Flower." Constant turf battles, wandering romeos from neighboring clans and bad girls who sneak off to meet them. Great fun to watch . . . although they warn you these are true life situations . . . I was unprepared for baby "Blossum" to be carried off by a goshawk :*(

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

IP, Pick me! Pick me! (I just wanted to join the fight over which one of us will have the pleasure of watching you eat turkey.)

Yes, never try a new recipe out on friends. I made these brownies the other night (along with some mini quiches and taco-pizza roll thingies) and they were downright inedible! Too bad for my guests as it was the only dessert I had. amazingly, they weren't half bad the next day.

Py, may I have a slice of virtual pecan pie, please? And you're right about RI's spousal unit. The sight of a man cleaning the bathroom (or anything for that matter) is always very stimulating. She was done for!

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Ceal, unfortunately for me, I have nothing but basic TV...but I could watch "animal planet" at your house.

RI, you talk like owning the biggest bottle of Purell is a bad thing. It's a trophy, baby!

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

sue, I would say you are fortunate to have only basic tv.

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

Don't go i_p!!! H_L is only amusing online. First the plate will have your name on it,!!

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

Watch out, H_L: IP won't go down without a bite. Er, fight.

libraffe 11 years, 6 months ago

Putting marshmallows on sweet potatoes is unnatural.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

RI, I just want to know how you get that fancy little trademark symbol. My keyboard (like my TV) just has the minimum requirements.

Py, I'm getting a second wind. Would you please pass the taters and gravy? And someone please throw me a roll! Speaking of rolls, I have the best dinner roll recipe ever! Seriously! Ever!

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

® susie_Q: on a PC just hold down the Alt key and type 0174, when you release the alt key your symbol will appear ® btw, the 0 is a zero :) ®

trinity 11 years, 6 months ago


0174 didn't work for me. even with the zero as a zero!

ceal, you're my hero!

ah heck...pywacket, ya got any libation with a good high octane to go alongside the scrumpdillyicious food??? :)

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

hot damn!® I learned something new! The day is not wasted. (Ceal's method worked for me)

Py, nope. I make my rolls from scratch and the dough ferments to a nice yeasty luciousness in the fridge overnight.

trinity 11 years, 6 months ago

¿ ha! i can make an upside down question mark!

I AM QUEEN OF THE WORRRRRRRRLD!!!! (not really, just playin', lol)

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

The report of it's death was exaggerated :)

Linda Endicott 11 years, 6 months ago

I've tried and tried to tell people how I always cooked a 20 pound turkey in four hours or less, but I guess no one believes me, as no one ever tried it.

They still insist on roasting the damn thing all night until it's so dry you could rub the drumsticks together and make mother did it the overnight way, and so I was about 23 before I realized I LIKED turkey.

This method comes from a 1950s Betty Crocker cookbook, for all you naysayers out there, and it works like a dream:

(oh, yeah, please remember to take the bird out of the freezer and put it in a pan of COLD water to thaw for about a day and a half first, or NO method of cooking will work :), change the water every couple of hours or so, and take the wrapper off first! )

Anyway, back to cooking a 20 pound turkey in 4 hours or less:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Take thawed bird and slather the outside all over with butter or margarine. After that, rub the bird inside and out with salt to taste...I didn't usually use more than 3 or 4 tsp for the whole bird.

Line roaster with heavy duty, wide aluminum foil, with the shiny side toward the bird. (if you put the shiny side out, it reflects a lot of the heat back into the oven, and it takes longer to cook)

Put turkey inside the aluminum foil. Stuff bird if that's what you do, but I never did. Close the foil around the bird, and crimp closed. Put lid on roaster. Put bird in oven and forget about it for at least 3 hours. No basting. With the butter and the foil trapping everything in, it basically bastes itself. Keep the temp at 450 the entire time.

After about three hours, remove bird from oven, take off roaster lid, open the foil, put bird back in oven without roaster lid, so the little beauty can brown a little.

Don't be surprised if the meat is starting to fall off the bone after only three hours. The thing will be so moist it will practically squirt broth at you when you eat it. Use broth in the foil, about half and half with water, and add a little bit of cornstarch for great gravy.

This method even works with the turkeys that have the little pop-out button to tell you it's done.

I never started cooking a turkey until at least 8 AM on Thanksgiving day, and it was always done by dinnertime.

I always made three kinds of pies, apple, cherry and pumpkin, plus candied sweet potatoes (no marshmallows, yuck), homemade cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, stuffing (in the oven, but not in the bird), etc., etc.

Now of course, I live in a little three room hellhole that heats up like a blast furnace every time you use the oven, even in the winter, so I don't cook much anymore.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Groan I have to agree w/ RI...oven bag all the way (although I never really understood the need for the 2T of flour in the bag...anybody know?)

Great tip for rookies: If you invite your mother-in-law to come and have dinner with all of your family and she giggles nervously and then says she'll think about it (just after she got done telling you that she had no plans on said day), it means she would rather gouge her eyes out with forks and you are never to invite her again.

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