My first stop on the road to giving thanks this holiday is at the place where I realize the abundance of meaningful relationships in my life. This Thanksgiving, we will be sharing a meal with Payton's best friend Zack and his Mom and sister, and then leaving the next day to spend the rest of the weekend with my Mom, stepfather, nephew and grandparents.
We are hosting on Thanksgiving Day, a relative first for us. We did this only one other time. About 15 years ago we had my Mother-in-law and her sister for dinner. The two of them being expert turkey cookers and overall Thanksgiving hosts really made that a piece of cake as they did all of the heavy lifting.
This year, we're on our own.
Of course the first thing I did when I realized that this was actually happening was to Google "how to cook a turkey." I founds several helpful sites, one of which was the Better Homes and Gardens site where they have a place to enter what time you want to serve dinner and how much your turkey weighs, and then they tell you exactly when to put the turkey in and when to take it out to let it stand before serving.
That was a good start. But then I found myself wondering if I should be buying a frozen turkey and letting it thaw, or am I better off buying a fresh one (which sounds better all the way around). But if it is fresh, how long will it keep? There are 3 full days before cooking day; is that too much?
So I then Googled "fresh or frozen turkey" and found this really great site, The Perfect Turkey Handbook. It answered all of the questions that I had as a rookie turkey cooker. Stuffing inside or out? Fresh or frozen? How to tell when it's done, making gravy, carving methods...it's all there! I'm sure that there are other opinions, other great sites, other methods.
But for me, it's all I need to jump in my car and get my rookie ass to Whole Foods. I'm sure the folks at Whole Foods will also be very helpful, however I anticipate that this Sunday before Thanksgiving I will be fighting my way through the isles with all of the other Silicon Valley yuppies who are spending their "Whole Paycheck" on dinner for Thursday night!