Friday, November 29, 2013

Thanksgiving Prep List

I do this every year - try to write down what needs to be done when the week of Thanksgiving so I won't be overwhelmed on Turkey Day so I can make a super fantastic dinner - but still enjoy myself too. 

Check out this bird. It's so beautiful and so incredibly delicious and juicy. We let it sit for 30 - 45 minutes after we pulled it out of the oven, tented with foil as Bobby Flay suggests HERE - you will se the recipe for Alton Brown's turkey we've made for the last few years and if you scroll down a bit, you'll see Bobby Flay's carving tips. I'm telling you, the turkey was so juicy I didn't even use chicken stock to warm it up and provide the juicy factor. 

Plus here's a funny picture of my wild child...

MONDAY: Pick up fresh 14-16 lb turkey and put in refrigerator. Decadent Mashed Potatoes - done.
TUESDAY: Stuffing. I've tried a new stuffing every year and having hit a favorite. We hit the jackpot this year with Bobby Flay's Wild Mushroom - Bacon Sourdough Dressing. Boom baby.
Make brine, let cool to room temperature and refrigerate.
WEDNESDAY: Clean turkey, but in brine + 1 gallon of heavily iced water. Cut brussels sprouts.
TURKEY DAY: Take potatoes and stuffing out of the refrigerator to come up to room temperature. Take turkey out of brine, wash, stuff with aromatics and give yourself 3 hours to cook the bird and 30-45 minutes to sit after being cooked.
Brussels Sprouts, potatoes and stuffing to cook. Consider 3 hours for your rolls - make these almost as you are sitting down to eat - you want, hot fresh rolls. Make your gravy while the turkey is being carved.
Then sit down, pour yourself a glass of sparkling cider, milk (my son!) or wine and eat with your family. Not stressed, not pushed to the brink - happy that you have make an incredible meal from scratch for your family and that you didn't fall asleep at dinner from sheer exhaustion.
Then watch as your children and husband ooh and ahh and make yummy noises all throughout dinner. See them smile and hear them talk about how delicious the different components of the meal are and about how thankful they are for the wonderful food they have on their plates. Then smile and count your blessings. Then write those blessings on your table cloth with a sharpie. Bring that table cloth out every year to see everything your family has been and is grateful for.

Then kiss your husband for doing the dishes - because he will - after you serve him the best dinner of his life - you bet your bottom dollar he will.

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