It’s panic time. Your turkey is out of the oven. All of the side dishes are sardined into the oven in a masterful attempt to heat white and sweet potatoes, green beans and Brussels sprouts, Aunt Edna’s peanut butter and spam in puff pastry treats, and more. Now, you think, your work really begins. You have to make the gravy and carve the turkey before you hear, and not for the first time, “you said dinner was at 2:00, and now it’s midnight.”
What to do? Breathe deeply, think of a place that has palm trees, warm water, sand, and no people. And dive in. No, not into the water. Into the last part of your meal prep.
Let me make this easier for you. Hopefully, you’ve kept the rest of your planning and cooking simple. No fois gras. No baking pies when the turkey is in the oven. And fewer than 17 side dishes. At this point, your turkey is out of the oven, and resting after it’s time in the oven. All you have to do is make the gravy and carve the turkey. Yes, in that order.
Here’s how I’ve helped to make this easier for you. One is a recipe for turkey gravy. This is a simple recipe, which can also be easily made gluten-free by using corn starch instead of flour. But I also tell you how to make turkey stock and how to get the pan drippings from the pan into your gravy.
Another way to reduce your stress is to carve your turkey slowly, methodically, and in your kitchen, not at the table. Let me re-phrase this: DO NOT CARVE YOUR TURKEY AT THE TABLE!!! Carving at the table is like going to a demolition derby. People are there for the crashes, mayhem, and accidents. Carving at the table is no different. The dining room has a crowded, often unstable table. No, I don’t mean your family. You need a solid, stable surface, your kitchen counter, to carve the bird. Trust me. Bad things happen when people watch carving. It’s not just an old tale. It’s the law.
So, here are my two turkey carving videos. One is from Mass Appeal last year. And the other is my slightly older YouTube video. Take 15 minutes (total!) for these two videos to make your Thanksgiving a wee bit easier and less stressful. Not only will you be glad you did, but your family and friends will love the less-stressed you.
Happy Thanksgiving, and bon appetit!