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What's your favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal?

Which part(s) of your Thanksgiving meal do you look forward to the most? (aside from friends/family/togetherness, blah, blah, blah...this is a food board after all!) I love, love, love turkey gravy. The real stuff, made with homemade stock and drippings. I could probably even do without the turkey as long as there was gravy, mashed potatoes, and stuffing.

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  1. Football and a nice nap.

      1. re: ipsedixit

        Me too. This is the Food Geeks' High Holy Day. Weeks of planning, prepping, contemplating, etc. have become as much fun as the eating. Even the Gibson I made myself while the birds rested was more enjoyable tinted by the final moments of expectation.

        1. re: MGZ

          In my family, it ties with Christmas. My mom and I start talking Christmas dinner in October. This year, we're either doing beef tenderloin with a mustard crust or leg of lamb with garlic, red wine and rosemary marinade.

      2. Leftovers....
        Thanksgiving sandwich
        Hot turkey sandwiches
        Turkey congee
        Pan fried stuffing and gravy

        2 Replies
        1. re: monku

          . . . Tetrazzini, pot pie, turkey noodle soup, potato pancakes.

          Pie for breakfast.

          1. re: onceadaylily

            Mmmm, potato pancakes. Sometimes I make extra mashed just to ensure I have enough for the potato pancakes the next day. With onions and scallions. And lots of butter (a health food, of course ;)

        2. The family stuffing - bread, sage, onion and oysters are the basics, Very moist. Just magic for me.

          1. Stuffing. and I didn't even make it this year! my mom's standard was bread, onions, ground pork, celery, raisins, and almonds. when i started cooking thxgiving dinners, i added rice pilaf, and started playing with herbs, spices, other add-ins. one year it was cubed beets. another year, brussel sprouts.

            Next would be the mashed potatoes, and I've made dozens of varieties over the years. tonight's (had our thxgiving dinner a night early) was an Epicurious recipe of potatoes, fennel, creme fraiche, and a rosemary butter. i added in turnips. I think the fave, tho, is garlic mashed potatoes with goat cheese.

            1. The skin! Then, followed by cornbread dressing with oysters, juicy breast meat, and pecan pie.

              2 Replies
              1. re: James Cristinian

                oh, duh, the POPE'S NOSE!!! didn't have one this year, only bought a leg and a half breast. stupid - my butcher actually HAD pope's noses for sale!

                1. re: mariacarmen

                  My absolute favorite part of the bird. My father and I split it in the kitchen before anyone else can get to it.
                  Which butcher actually sells turkey butts? I'd love to surprise my dad with a pound or two!

              2. The stuffing. The savory, delightfully chewy and dense, moist bread flavored with sage and thyme, onions and celery, all lovingly prepared, cooked ever so slowly in the turkey. I could make a meal of just the stuffing.

                1 Reply
                1. re: LoBrauHouseFrau

                  that post just made me salivate. Excuse me while I go find my leftover stuffing for a snack......

                2. Since I'm busy cooking all day, I definitely look forward to the leftovers the next day, after everyone's gone! A nice turkey sandwich with stuffing and cranberry sauce, and a pot of turkey broth simmering on the stove.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: coll

                    The skin that stretches across the neck cavity that is also stuffed with dressing.

                    1. re: marymac

                      me too! Have a wonderful day of thanks, marymac. Thinking of you today,

                    1. re: Veggo

                      Amen. Always led by the youngest member of the family (this year my 4-year-old great nephew).

                    2. tomorrow morning's leftovers! I'm already dreaming of turkey sandwiches, turkey salad, a big slice of pumpkin pie, and some of the fried onions from the top of my bean casserole!

                      1. The crunchy part of the stuffing covered with turkey gravy, and a good glass of wine. I would be completely content with only that.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: la2tokyo

                          I forgot, I love finishing off all the half bottles of wine. Well someone has to do it!

                          1. re: la2tokyo

                            Family joke--you know when I have arrived when the crunchy ends of the stuffing and strips of skin are missing from the resting bird. I kept the tradition alive this year.

                          2. The gravy. The best excuse for cooking a turkey.

                            1. Gravy. Made from pan drippings, a bit of giblet stock (so we get enough) and thickened with flour and butter.

                              Stuffing. Preferably with the gravy from above drizzled over it.

                              Turkey sandwiches the next day. First round made with decent quality sliced white bread, butter, miracle whip, lettuce, salt and pepper and sliced cold turkey. Sliced diagonally,. Second round has the addition of Indian lime pickle. Served with salt and vinegar potato chips, pickles and leftover cranberry-orange relish on the side.