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Thanksgiving 2011 Disaster Stories

Anybody had any blow-outs or melt-downs with their pre-planning?

I dumped a gallon of turkey brine all over my kitchen floor yesterday.

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  1. So far so good. I burned the fond in my caramelized onion pan, but I had already removed most of the onions so it was all good. The gallon of brine does NOT sound like fun - a gallon of water doesn't seem like much when it's in a jug, but spread it around and it makes a hell of a mess!

    3 Replies
    1. re: biondanonima

      And when it's salty, sugary, raw turkey water, the mess is nearly impossible to clean up! I guess I should just be thankful the turkey didn't end up on the floor with everything else.

      1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

        I forgot to put the butter on the apple pie mixture. I ended up pushing chunks through the vents. It looks good, but I'm worried!

        1. re: DaisyM

          i've done that before too! i ended up just making more slits so the "pattern" would still be there on the crust, and it was no worse for the wear. how did it turn out?

    2. Stay tuned.... there are so many things that can go wrong with my version of 5 hour duck, if I don't burn the house down in the process. The duck will rain it's fat down on 2 levels of roasting vegetables below it, and then collect in a pan beneath, with various turns and punctures hourly for all 3 levels, and ingredients, while the fat renders off for about 2 hours.

      I'm not in my own house.

      I'll provide a post-game report, if it is noteworthy, as I expect something will go terribly wrong.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Veggo

        I'll google for 5 hour duck. I'd love to hear about how that comes out. It sounds wonderful.

        1. re: AsperGirl

          One word -amazing. 3 hours @ 300, half hour @ 350. Simply amazing. I filled the cavity with apple slices, and finished it with an orange glaze. Veggies were good. Pan dressing with oysters, mushrooms and chestnuts was of concern for the contrast to the sweetness, but it worked deliciously with so many strong flavors competing equally. I would do it again with company when I don't have the flu.

          1. re: Veggo

            That sounds fantastic, veggo! Add in that dressing and it sounds even better! I wish I'd been at your house for Tday...

        2. re: Veggo

          My experience is that it's better as 4-hour duck, and the meat's a bit overdone at 5. Skin amazing regardless. YMMV.

          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

            Thanks, Caitlin. I noted similar comments to the Saveur recipe, and I plan to throttle it back to 4 hours.

        3. No disasters thus far, but one of our cats did get his head caught in the paper handle on the Trader Joe's grocery bag and ran around frantically, knocking over everything in his path.

          Oh, and I did forget to buy a can of evaporated milk for my classic pumpkin pie, so I made the Paula Deen pumpkin pie recipe instead. Also, Trader Joes was out of canned cranberry sauce (!) so I couldn't make the congealed cranberry mold. No biggie, I've got lots of regular homemade cranberry sauce and will make the congealed salad for Christmas.

          5 Replies
          1. re: amyatkendall

            one of our cats did get his head caught in the paper handle on the Trader Joe's grocery bag and ran around frantically, knocking over everything in his path.
            ~~~~~~~~~
            LOL!!!! that's a priceless visual. thanks for the laugh :)

            a tip on the evaporated milk: if you have room in the pantry, buy a few cans the next time you're at the store. the stuff lasts a long time and you won't get caught without it again.

            1. re: amyatkendall

              The cat in the bag handle is a weekly occurrence here, one I never tire of. :) The cats think I shop there just to get them bags.

              1. re: amyatkendall

                my friend's cat did the same thing with a plastic bag. tore around her place like a bat out of hell. and we wanted to help her, we really did, except well, she was moving so quickly, and frankly, we were pretty busy being doubled over in hysterics.

                1. re: amyatkendall

                  My cats love going in shopping bags, I've learned to snip the handles so they don't get caught. It's funny and sad at the same time. At least they get some exercise!

                  No disasters yet but the day is young.

                  1. re: amyatkendall

                    Here is a decent substitute for evaporated milk. I've used it in a pinch.
                    * 2/3 cup non-fat dry milk
                    * 3/4 cup water

                  2. The bag of cranberries is in the chest freezer in the garage. But the garage door is being held closed with a length of twine from doorknob to drawer pull and I made the knots too solid for my too-short nails. So no cranberry sauce tonight.

                    I'll work on some better drama for tomorrow. :)

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: DuchessNukem

                      This sounds like it might be an interested tale.

                    2. I am not happy with the cornbread I made for my dressing but used it anyway. I hope it doesn't ruin the cured Spanish chorizo that favors the dressing. The rest of my family was begging to sample the sautéed onion, celery, chorizo mixture I sautéed. I should have just served them that and not mixed in the bad cornbread. Wish me luck.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: suburban_mom

                        The cornbread is just the vehicle for the other flavors! It should soak up the goodness of the onions, celery and chorizo and be fine. :)

                        1. re: weezieduzzit

                          That is what I'm hoping for. I briefly considered making more corn bread until I realized I would have to go to the store for more buttermilk. That wasn't happening tonight.

                          1. re: weezieduzzit

                            i agree on this one. the cornbread is just a way to spread out the deliciousness of the chorizo onto a broader eating surface