Well its offical I'm in charge of Thanksgiving Dinner

The friendliest place on the web for anyone that enjoys cooking.
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.


Master Chef
Sep 14, 2004
Well this will be my first year making Thanksgiving Dinner. Mom passed away the first of this year so I will now be the one to make it. Oh how I miss her. Many years ago....probably 15 I tackled cooking my first turkey in the oven for a Super Bowl Party I had......mom talked me through it though. I know I can't make a lot of her dishes like she did so I was thinking maybe I would include some different dishes we wouldn't normally eat. Would you guys care to share your favorite Thanksgiving dish that you make every year. Please include the recipe. Thanks!!
Sizz, YOU CAN DO IT!!!!

There's a ton of recipes under "Chicken, Turkey" for doing your bird, and under "Vegetables" there's a thread about sides for the Big Day.

here's what I posted under the latter for a start:

Cranberry Orange Relish

1 pkg fresh cranberries (12 oz)
1/2 cup sugar
1-1/2 cups boiling water
2 small or 1 large package cranberry or other red Jello mix
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1-1/2 cups cold water
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

Chop cranberries finely in food processor, mix with sugar, set aside.
Add cinnamon and make the Jello using the water amounts. Refrigerate until thickened - about 90 minutes - then stir in cranberries, oranges, and nuts. Spoon into a 6-cup mold, cover, and back in the fridge for at least four hours.

Unmold for 12 servings.
Grandma's BEST Broccoli Casserole

This is an absolute MUST - it alway makes GREAT leftovers! I usually triple the recipe - we have about 15-20 and there is usually a little leftover for breakfast the next morning 8)

Grandma’s Broccoli Casserole

• 1 pkg. frozen broccoli
• 1 can French fried onion rings
• 1 C cashews nuts (broken)
• 1 can cream of mushroom soup (undiluted)
• 3 Tbs. liquid from broccoli
• 1 1/2 C shredded cheddar cheese

Cook broccoli according to directions, drain and save liquid. Put broccoli in bottom of buttered casserole dish and layer as follows:

Onion rings, cashew nuts, cream of mushroom soup that has been mixed with broccoli liquid and pour over all. Top with cheddar cheese and bake at 350 degrees for 20 - 30 minutes or until bubbly.
it's absolutely wonderful mudbug!!!!! someone a long time ago said they were going to try a combination cauliflower and broccoli - don't know how that ever turned out!
I agree marmalady - roasted broccoli and cauliflower are GREAT! Some of my son's friend's do NOT like broccoli but they will eat it roasted.

LOL mudbug - sowwy!!!!
marmalady said:
LOL, Mudbug - Did you ever try the roasted broc and cauliflower - please, please try it!

I WILL try this, just because it's you recommending it (and thanks for that roasting chart if I didn't thank you before). (whispering to self, "don't be afraid, the nice lady in Charleston is there to help....")
mudbug said:
Cranberry Orange Relish

My mom used to make this every thanksgiving, its great. My daughter asked me today if I can make it this year for us.
My family always made this dish every Thanksgiving

Scalloped Oysters

1 pt canned oysters (or mix in some canned clams), chopped
46 saltine crackers (one sleeve) coarsly crushed
1/2 cup margarine or butter, melted
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1/2 tsp salt

Drain oysters, save 1/4 cup broth from can. Melt butter and mix
in cracker crumbs to coat. Butter a 8 1/2-inch baking dish. Put
1/3 of the crumbs in the pan. Cover bottom with 1/2 of the oysters.
Sprinkle with pepper. layer crumbs, oysters, crumbs, oysters.
Mix everything else in a measuring cup and pour over and top with
the rest of the crumbs.

Bake 350 for 40 minutes or until set up. Makes four servings.
chocolatechef - this is a tradition at Easter - but you make me want them for Thanksgiving too - these are also good the next day!!!! But then again what Thanksgiving food isn't good the next day!
Is this an official Easter tradition somewhere?

Wow, my family must be bassakward! We always had it for Thanksgiving, and again at Christmas.

We always used fresh oysters from a plastic carton [we are land locked]. Since my recipes are on another computer, I have to get the recipes off the net, and adapt them to post here!
No, it's not an Easter tradition that I know of - my father-in-law absolutely LOVES it and they always go off for Thanksgiving (I cook for about 15-20 friends that day) and on Christmas we have stricktly finger-type foods - so this is the time I can make it for him.
I'm in charge this year as well. same reason. everyone is coming in and I've delegated some of the stuff but I'm a dessert cook (soups too) basically. Have trouble figuring out sides that aren't baked, cassaroled or otherwise blended w/so many other things that you can't tell what you're eating. Not that I don't like that..quite the opposite, but we've got greenbeans done like that, and potatoes w/cheese, broccoli and rice etc.
Not to mention the sweet potatoes (whipped, sugared and altogether brought to another plane of existanace). I'm going to have oyster pie, cheese cake, bake the turkey and ham and do pumpkin and cherry pie. I make the pies w/a lard crust..just like my mom did. Dirty rice and some other dressings as well. Gee, better get started!
Sizz...I have the best stuffing for your turkey if you are a meat lover!
1lb. of sausage meat
1 tsp. poultry dressing spice
1/2 tsp of ginger
1 large egg....(well beaten)
16 soda crackers (rolled to a fine crumb)
mix all the ingredients in a bowl, I use my hands, and stuff into your bird. For a large bird double the recipe. One other tip if you do not carve the bird at the table, cook the bird with the "breasts" down, on a rack. This will give you the most moist white meat ever. If you carve at the table the rack can leave marks so some don't like the appearance. The rack is important with this recipe as it helps keep the turkey out of the fat, so the bottom does become mushy. Good luck Sizz...You can do it!!!!!!!!!

ps- I usually buy the sauge meat frozen in a tube...but you can use your favourite breakfact sausage that you remove from their casing.
choclatechef said:
My family always made this dish every Thanksgiving

Scalloped Oysters

1 pt canned oysters (or mix in some canned clams), chopped
46 saltine crackers (one sleeve) coarsly crushed
1/2 cup margarine or butter, melted
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1/2 tsp salt

Drain oysters, save 1/4 cup broth from can. Melt butter and mix
in cracker crumbs to coat. Butter a 8 1/2-inch baking dish. Put
1/3 of the crumbs in the pan. Cover bottom with 1/2 of the oysters.
Sprinkle with pepper. layer crumbs, oysters, crumbs, oysters.
Mix everything else in a measuring cup and pour over and top with
the rest of the crumbs.

Bake 350 for 40 minutes or until set up. Makes four servings.
You got me, I love oysters! I am making this even before thanksgiving...None of my gang likes oysters so I'll have the whole thing just for ME :) Thanks for sharing, this does look wonderful.
kadesma :)
kadesmom - California's not that far away - I'll come help you eat it ;)

Southerncook - I have a recipe posted in the Dessert section called A Slice of Sin - if you want something chocolate you should really try it. It can be made up to 2 weeks in advance too!
My sister was overwhelmed with the thought of cooking her first bird. I reassured her by reminding her that she is really only intimidated because it is such a large thing to cook. Once you are over that, its a walk in the park.
First, Sizz, my extreme sympathies, this is gonna get a bit tough for you, the first Thanksgiving with no Mom there, let alone the first time you've got the responsibility to do the cooking...(note the first time I cooked a turkey, and invited my parens, my Mom was carrying a couple hundred in cash, lest it was inedible and she could spring for Chinese Food, but that was a lot of years back!)

Okay, the turkey first...

If you can find a "barn fed" turkey that's not been frozen, that's an automatic leg up on the dinner...these would be birds that eat naturally, or more so than the typical carcasses in the freezer..."air chilled" is another plus...the dark meat is in fact "dark", on these birds, and there's a good deal more of it...anyways..

The day before (most of you USA types take the week off, so this won't be hard!) take your turkey, remove the neck and giblets from the gut, and wash thoroughly...

Place the bird in a new, clean Glad garbage bag (keep with me!) and add a half cup of Kosher salt. Then add a complete bottle of Knorr herb and garlic marinade, a half bottle of Knorr mesquite marinade, 3 tablespoons (error on the side of generosity!) of chopped garlic, a half cup of soya sauce (presuming nobody's got high blood pressure; if so, ignore this bit), a cup of seasoned rice vinegar and a tbspn of mixed peppercorns...

Mix all this stuff together in the bag (rather violently! the turkey's not feeling anything at this point!), push out all the air, knot the bag and stick it in the fridge, breast side down...and let it sit for around 24 hours...you can turn it on its back for 3 or 4 hours, to make sure you brine it all, but its mostly the breast meat we are concerned with at this point...

Still on the day before, go to this Board's "Salad" column and dig down to the "5 Cup Salad" recipe posting, which, I guess, in the USA, is known as "Ambrosia"...you want to make this a day in advance, as its no fum working like a Spartan helot on the special day...in fact you can do this some numbers of days in advance, if you can keep all the little fingers out of the mix...(Geez this is my Christmas Day routine!)

Don't know if you're going with smashed potato or with that Yankee thing about yams/sweet potato, but expect that you can get yourself through that, even if I prefer some finely diced scallions or green onion in my smashed potato (chopped and added when I'm "smashing")(and its interesting to think through the maple syrup sweetener, vs the brown sugar, if you are going the "yam" route)

Okay, its still the "day before" and you have the stuffing to consider...I ue 12 grain bread stuffing, which really gives back in flavour and taste, if you'd like to try it...again, I use "Dempster's" 12 grain bread, bit buy what you can where you are...cut off and discard the crusts (I feed them to the birds and squirrels!), including all the outside edgs so I'm left with just the "centre of the loaf" as this gives me consistency in my stuffing...

A yellow onion, sauteed in olive oil with a good deal of grated garlic, finely sliced celery stalk, and, remembering those giblets and the neck, heart, liver? I've boiled those gently (the liver is almost a last minute addition!), de-boned the neck meat, and dumped them all into the processer (cut the gristle out of the giblets first!) and pureed them...toss this into the budding stuffing mix with the water you cooked them in, and mix well...as your taste for this "developes" you can buy extra (its CHEAP!) or beg the stuff your neighbours are afraid to use...add your sage, poultry seasoning, fresh minced marjoram, basil, rosemary, etc, and then fold in the bread that you've shredded and mix very well...

Remove the bird from the bag, and discard the bag and the brine...wash the bird off, stuff it with your stuffing, and IMMEDIATELY stick at least two shish kabob skewers through the carcass (thighs and breast!) to hang the bird on the roasting pan...spray the roasting pan with olive oil in advance...and place the stuffed bird, BREAST SIDE DOWN in the preheated oven at 325...roast 90 minutes and remove, then, grabbing the kebabs in your mittened hands, "flip" the bird end for end so its breast side up, and return to the oven (this is gettingthe dark meat to heat up faster than the white; you want the white meat at 160 degrees when you are finished, the dark at 180, and you don't want the white meat dried out!) (Without a lot of fussing about explaining, this DOES get it done, trust me here, I've been doing it for years!)

Turkey does cook "funny" and so here is the chance to invest in a digital meat probe to tell you the internal temperature of the bird...you might have seen Ranee's and my disagreement on this issue a few weeks back, but its my point that you stick the probe into the thigh meat, without touching the bones (which heat up hotter) or the skewers (which heat up a TON!) and, when the temp reads back 170 degrees, you remove the bird from the oven,and "tent" it with tinfoil, as the heat will continue to cook the carcass, raising at least 10 F as it sits...and then you can eventually have somebody else carve it (make sure you grab onto the juices, as brining adds to much to gravy quantity and quality!)

Okay, that's got you the "bird" (or me!) the stuffing, the potato or yam as you prefer, and a salad...

A previous poster suggested frozen broccholi or cauliflower, and I simply cannot let that stand...

In one of the nicest birthday.Father's Day presents I ever got, my family bought me a really good set of pots and pans, with the heat sink on the bottom, and a steamer basket...

Both broccholi and cauliflower belong in that steamer basket, and they don't need to be steamed long, either!

While that's boiling up, again, adjust for volume, melt 2 tablespoons of margerin in a small pot on gentle heat, and add and emulsify 2 tablespoons of flour...bring up in temp, while adding a good blast of Worcestshire sauce, a tspn of hot Dijon mustard, a like amount of Kosher or Sea Salt, a twist or three of fresh ground pepper, and when this is all moving nicely, add a cup of coffee creamer (18%) and bring to a slow boil, stirring...

(remove your veggies from the steamer, if you are doing this in synch, there are about done, now!...)

Add and mix in one cup of finely grated Asiago Cheese to the milk mix and stir vigorously until its fully blended...remove from heat and dump in a bowl so people can drizzle it over the delicious cruciforms to their own taste...

Steamed sweet peas to go along with the creamy mashed potato's and gravy, this is likewise quick, and if you can find "pearl onions" these add a bunch to the peas, you can steam them just a minute longer...maybe some carrots for colour, if you go the route of the smashed potato, so its not so "green and white"...

And your own family traditions and concepts, and prayers of the day...remembering to thank God for the Blessing of your Mom, and the land in which you live, that all this should be possible, and an extra for the servicemen in the Army, Navy and Air Force, who are on station this day, to make it possible...


Latest posts

Top Bottom