Food

Thanksgiving Mistakes Cooks Make

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Thanksgiving is a day to celebrate with family and friends, but the cooking aspect of the day can be stressful.  There are some mistakes that many cooks make that can make the dinner a little hard to swallow.  Make sure that you are doing everything that you can to make the perfect meal so that you can all enjoy each other's company.

NOT PREPARING IN ADVANCE

When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, it is important to prepare a bit in advance.  If you try to cram all food into one day, you risk making mistakes that can make the food not great.  Many side dishes can be made in advance and simply reheated before you sit down to eat.  This includes dishes like stuffing, vegetable casseroles and cranberry sauce.

THE TURKEY IS NOT TIMED RIGHT 

Cooking a Thanksgiving turkey is definitely a skill that has to be learned.  First, overcooking it is common and can make it very dry.  You want to properly measure the temperature throughout the cooking process and the turkey should be removed from the oven when joint at the thigh measures 165 degrees Fahrenheit.  After you remove it from the oven, it must rest at least 30 minutes before you carve it.  Not allowing the proper resting period will cause dryness and it also leads to it being difficult to carve.

THIN GRAVY

To help thicken your gravy, you want to use about two teaspoons of cornstarch.  This helps to get your gravy to a consistency that will not have it running all over your plate.  When you add the cornstarch make sure that the gravy is warm and whisk it in little by little.

UNDERESTIMATING THE AMOUNT OF GUESTS

When you are making a large meal, it is easy to think you have made enough for everyone.  A good rule of thumb is to always assume that everyone will have seconds.  You also want to overestimate by about five guests and assume that they too will have seconds.  There is nothing wrong with lots of leftovers, so keep this in mind as you are planning your meal.  You can also choose to have a boneless turkey breast defrosted and ready to go should you need more meat.  These can be cooked in less than an hour and will serve up plenty of extra bird.  If you don't need it, just pop it back into the freezer for a future meal. 

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