What Are Your Best Thanksgiving Tips and Tricks?

Hello and welcome back toWhat’s Cooking? , an open thread where you can share your brilliant thoughts, tips, recipes and opinions on all food related matters. This week, I want to know your best tips and tricks to make sure Turkey Day goes smoothly.

Whether you’re hosting a big dinner or just bringing in a few dishes, logistics always plays a big role on Thanksgiving. From seating to cleaning, organizing and having a plan (or five) can help keep the holiday in harmony. Of course I have questions:

  • Have you allocated seating positions or let the “human pieces” fall where they can? I’m a big fan of people sitting on their own, but everyone in my family is pretty calm.
  • Do you have a schedule ahead of time? I never had, but I never accepted.
  • Do you have any “secret” or unexpected ingredients for casseroles, pies, or any other classic Thanksgiving dishes? I like the stuffed miso .
  • How do you cook a turkey? You guys know I’m going to look at mine.
  • How to make everything (warm) hit the table at the same time? Coolers with towels and heating pads can be of great help.
  • How do you transport pies and other precious, fragile cargo? I always carry pies on my lap, in the front seat, where I can look after them.
  • Who is in charge of cleaning? My aunt usually makes a small list of cleaners for my cousins.
  • If you do not host, how do you transport the dishes? This will be my first year when I have to transport something. I’m going to finish a turkey (sous-vided, natch) at my friend’s house, but I plan on taking all other meals in the fridge with towels and the gravy in a thermos.
  • Do you have a children’s table? My family never had one, because children usually just sit next to the adults to whom they belong.
  • Do you have a mitigation plan? I always make the leftover sandwich, but the turkey carcass is for making gumbo.

As always, feel free to add any additional comments that you feel are appropriate. If that makes Thanksgiving easier for you, we want to hear about it.


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