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LJWorld.com weblogs Shop Talk with Jenn and Julie

Does your family look forward to the same Thanksgiving menu year after year?

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I’m getting getting ready for Thanksgiving. Whether it’s table settings or cooking ideas, I’ve been seeing information everywhere.

How do you cook your turkey? Do you oven roast it? Do you deep fry it? What spices do you use? Do you still stuff your bird or bake stuffing separately?

Since Thanksgiving has been the Anderson holiday since Dennis and I got married, I have rarely deviated from our traditional menu. The family still expects the same dinner. And with Eric coming home from school, I know he is looking for all the home comforts that he’s been missing over the last several months.

And not only does the menu stay the same, but we also pull out grandma’s china and silverware. I set my table with a brown cloth; grandma’s china is white with a pale blue floral motif. A few weeks ago, while at Home Goods, I found great napkins with embroidered cornucopias on them very reasonably priced. A great addition for my holiday table.

I usually just have some votives scattered across the table. The food takes center stage.

In this week’s World Market ad, they are featuring some $9.99 Thanksgiving deals. The large roasting pan with v-rack is a great deal at this price. I am interested in the white oval platter. If you’re looking for napkins, the 6-pack for $9.99 is also worth looking at.

Like I said, I don’t deviate from my roasted turkey, but the World Market turkey brine seasoning pack has me a little curious. I have never brined before, so I’m thinking it may be something I would try. Does brining really help keep your turkey moist? Will my family taste a difference if I brine? If you have used this method before, please let me know how your bird turned out.

Target also has a $10 roaster with rack. The $15 Crock-Pot (4-quart) would also come in handy when making the Thanksgiving dinner. Target also has Butterball turkeys for .88 cents a pound or Market Pantry turkeys for .68 cents a pound.

If you’re still looking for last minute fall touches to decorate your Thanksgiving table, check out Pier 1 Imports. Sunday’s ad includes a $10 off coupon on your purchase of $30 or more.

Comments

wmathews 3 years, 5 months ago

We've tried different turkey recipes over the years (and by "we" I mean "Mom Mathews"), but the one thing we HAVE TO HAVE is mom's corn pudding, which is our family's version of stuffing. She even makes each of us kids our own pan to take home so we don't fight over leftovers. I don't even know what's in it other than corn and breadcrumbs. I think it magically appears in the oven and is sent directly from heaven.

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Katara 3 years, 5 months ago

If anyone is going to World Market to get brining spices/or packets & any other decorations, don't forget your $10 off/$30 purchase coupon. It is good until 11/24. They had the ads with the coupons in last week's paper. You can also go to their website & print it out.

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emu 3 years, 5 months ago

Turkey stuffed with Hostess Twinkies and Vienna sausages. it doesn't get any better than that, at least not with your clothes on.

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Andini 3 years, 5 months ago

Yes. Funyuns, Twinkies and Mountain Dew.

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macon47 3 years, 5 months ago

we used to roatate between large t-bone steaks on the grill and bbq ribs from grandaddys untill we deep fried a turkey and now it is in the rotation

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George_Braziller 3 years, 5 months ago

Sweet potatoes/yams what ever you want to call them ----- gag.

They are one of three food items I can't choke down. The other two are oysters, and liver.

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Kelly Johnson 3 years, 5 months ago

I use the Reynolds Turkey bags and have always had great luck with them so far. The turkey stays moist and is always cooked through, but in a shorter time than traditional roasting. I've been thinking of trying some type of rub to add a little more flavor.

Our dinner is pretty traditional - turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes & gravy, green bean casserole, some type of corn dish, pumpkin pies, rolls. I occasionally try a new recipe - depends on time and money. This year I'm keeping it simple.

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Deja Coffin 3 years, 5 months ago

Has anyone ever used those turkey roaster that look like over sized crock pots? I was thinking about going that route and freeing up some oven space.

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Mari Aubuchon 3 years, 5 months ago

I have used Alton Brown's recipe for quite a few years with excellent results. I do buy fresh rather than frozen turkey and make sure it has no added ingredients. For sides, I make the dressing my Dad always made, corn pudding, roasted root veggies, and fresh cranberry sauce.

I decorate with candles as well as baskets, including a cornucopia, filled with autumn leaves, dried fruits, nuts, Indian corn, and gourds. All of my decor was purchased at one or another Lawrence store for at least 75% off; )

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Norma Jeane Baker 3 years, 5 months ago

I started brining turkey several years ago. Yes, it makes a difference as long as, as mentioned above, you don't overcook the turkey.

I pretty much follow Alton Brown's basic recipe for the brining. I may change the spices some, but that's usually by adding more. Oh, and I usually brine the turkey for closer to 24 hours. Enjoy!

I have some friends with whom the Informed household has spent many holidays or special occasions. They always use those roasting bags for the turkey and the bird is always super moist. So there's another option.

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madman 3 years, 5 months ago

Brining is the way to go. It cuts the cooking time down by about 30 minutes and more moist.

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Keith Richards 3 years, 5 months ago

In my experience brines definitely do help. However, the main thing is that still do not over cook the turkey, or that will render your brine unnoticeable.

My family rarely does Turkey anymore, so I haven't had to brine anything for many years. We switched to what our family loves most, hickory smoked ribs. Pretty unconventional but since the entire family doesn't get together often we decided to do what we like to eat the most.

Combine that garlic cream sauce pasta, bread, veggies and you have yourself a meal. I do 4 homemade pies for dessert. Chocolate french silk, apple, cherry (both with crumb toppings) and a pecan.

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Roland Gunslinger 3 years, 5 months ago

"Does your family look forward to the same Thanksgiving meal year after year?"

No. We usually cook a new meal each Thanksgiving. I imagine after a few years the food would spoil, get freezer burn, dry out, etc so we cook a fresh meal each and every year. That way the risk of death from ecoli or salmonelli is less likely.

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Roland Gunslinger 3 years, 5 months ago

"Does your family look forward to the same Thanksgiving meal year after year?"

No. We usually cook a new meal each Thanksgiving. I imagine after a few years the food would spoil, get freezer burn, dry out, etc so we cook a fresh meal each and every year. That way the risk of death from ecoli or salmonelli is less likely.

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Bill Lee 3 years, 5 months ago

I always roast a turkey in the oven, but everything else varies. I'm always on the outlook for new receipes to try. While the basic dishes are pretty much the same, the prep isn't. Since I live alone, I get to enjoy a lot of leftovers. I have a couple of weeks to empty my fridge, so I"ll be eating more than usual to get that done. No baking this year, so I'll probably buy a gooseberry pie.

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