Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Nov 26, 2008 03:19 PM

Anyone starting to cook Thanksgiving Dinner as late as we are? (Wed. night)

Despite all the best planning and intentions, my fiance and I are faced with the usual last minute dilemmas: an overly ambitious multiple course dinner, nothing prepared (he's still out shopping), picky guests, and a single 1950s portable roaster plus a stovetop and a Weber grill (outside in Vermont!) Of course, almost everything is cooked from scratch, we have limited counter space, etc. At least we are eating late, around 7 p.m or so. The guest will have to content herself with appetizers. Then we are cooking more the next day for 3 or 4 less picky eaters (plus heating up the leftovers because I always cook too much.) Ack!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Since you have a Weber you might want to do this with the turkey:

    We've made it many, many times and it's always been great. And takes SO little time to cook. AND leaves the kitchen free. Good luck.

    1 Reply
    1. re: c oliver

      Actually, I think I will try this for my turkey legs, etc. for gravy in a roasting pan. Fortunately I cheated and bought a cob-smoked turkey from Harrington's--they're pretty good. It's hard to home-smoke in the north, as you need to finish in an oven. In Michigan we once tried to smoke a 23-lb turkey for 22 hours! The portable roaster is cooking pumpkin for the pumpkin panna cotta, so that the panna cotta spices can meld tonight.
      Thanks for the idea!

    2. I got a good tip here to prepare mashed potatoes early and then reheat in crockpot

      1. Guess I'm way ahead of you! I just finished making the broth for the gravy I'll be making, tomorrow, of course. And we've picked up the CF pumpkin-pecan cheesecake. Even bought a (real) roasting pan today. But I've been thinking a lot about it all -- honest! ..

        1. Well, I don't have your limitations as to cooking space, but I almost never actually cook anything but dessert before Thanksgiving morning. I put the turkey in to brine on Wednesday evening, prep the stuffing and peel the potatoes in the morning, and cook the veg and sides that morning as well. Oh, but I do the gravy well in advance, from extra turkey parts which are roasted and turned into stock well the week before.

          What's your menu? I can see the turney cooked in the roaster, mashed potatoes made on the stove top, roasted sweet potatoes or other vegetables on the grill. A nice salad or sauteed spinach. Cranberry relish (cheat and add a little grated orange zest, minced white onion and finely chopped jalapeno to the canned whole berry sauce) is easy. Glazed carrots or sweet and sour red beets? Seriously I think you'll be fine.

          1. the good news is that you won't have a house full of hungry people waiting around for you to feed them! one guest is much easier to distract until dinner's ready :)

            i'm actually not hosting this T-giving for the first time in many years, and when i called the hostess around 6:00 to see how the prep was going, she told me she hadn't even done the grocery shopping no, you're not the only one who's starting late!

            3 Replies
            1. re: goodhealthgourmet

              Menu for tomorrow: Smoked gouda gougeres (my first time,) local cheddar & store bought crackers, gussied up soft chevre, local whole grain rolls, Emeril's creamed onions with bacon (my fiance's experiment,) fresh fruit salad with berries and pomegranates seeds, wild rice salad with nuts, dried blueberries and apricots & orange, green beans with smoked duck, fiance's experimental ancho & chipotle sweet potatoes, smoked turkey, gravy, cornbread apple dressing, the guest's mashed potatoes with cheese, my gratin with fennel, goat milk, manchego, potatoes, and turnips, that weird cranberry jello thing (fiance's request!?!), Harringron's brandied cranberry sauce, and fresh pumpkin panna cotta along with some chocolate chip panna cotta for the guest, who only eats chocolate desserts. Pumpkin and yams are cooking. Cream for panna cotta will steep next.
              For Friday, I will add oyster dressing, Boone Tavern spoon bread, and sour cream apple pie made with Northern Spy apples. Whew! I wish I could think of a soup for Friday. Whew!

              1. re: drloripalooza

                It all sounds good, how many people are you cooking for?

                Don't despair, my sister, who is a pretty decent cook, is still living down the Thanksgiving where the meal wasn't ready until 10:30 p.m....and she didn't serve turkey.

                1. re: drloripalooza

                  amen on the spoonbread...have you made it before?