Culinary Calamities that Cost: What NOT to Do This Thanksgiving!

November 22, 2011 | Posted By: Heather Stephens | Categorized in: Food & Dining Out, FatWallet
Warning: This post contains one of my most embarrassing moments E-V-E-R, what I learned from it, and prizes for you at the end!

At the least this post will give you some tips on what NOT to do as you prepare the annual feast for your friends and family. At best, you may get a chuckle out of it and in the long run, it may save you some dough, not having to buy new appliances. :)

I am a disaster in the kitchen. My bad reputation started when I caught the home-ec kitchen on fire my senior year of high school, evacuating the entire building during final exams and continues today.

It was my first Thanksgiving as a bride to be to my husband of 16 years. I wanted to impress my soon to be mother-in-law by playing "Becky home-ec-y" and hosting a fabulous Thanksgiving at my apartment. I spent about half of my monthly grocery budget buying all the fixings I thought were important and then lugged them up to my third floor apartment, which was looking pretty spiffy with my fall decorations and new home-made table cloth with a hot-glued hem.

I thought I was ready to go bright and early on Thanksgiving day, but I freaked when I realized that the turkey didn't fit in my apartment sized oven. A frantic call to my fiance resulted in a perfect solution of cooking it on the grill instead.

Unfortunately, that was just the start of my Thanksgiving challenges.


  • I didn't realize until later in the day that turkey was still frozen in the middle, so we didn't eat until about 10:00 pm.
  • I had no clue that I was supposed to take the guts out of the bird before I cooked it (or that there were guts to take out).
  • I melted ice cube trays all over the top of my gas stove down into the burners and everywhere.
  • I didn't realize that the bottom drawer of the range was not a drawer, but a broiler, so I charred all the wooden handles of my hand-me down pans.
  • I melted a rubber spatula into the pan of gravy.
  • And the grand finale of my most embarrassing Thanksgiving ever was when I accidentally farted in front of my mother-in-law, my fiance, and all our guest when I was laughing so hard about everything that had happened.

What I've learned from my Thanksgiving blunders:

  1. Marry someone who can cook. Although this could be a catch 22, because I'd probably be skinny eating a raw food diet if I didn't have someone to cook for me.
  2. Work at a company that caters in your lunch (again a catch 22).
  3. A fridge with an ice maker is worth the extra few hundred dollars.
  4. A turkey takes up 1 day per 4 pounds to thaw in the fridge. You can thaw a turkey more quickly in cold water (30 minutes per pound).
  5. Cast iron is wonderful to cook on--it's my husband's favorite--and the handles won't burn if you store them in the broiler. Note to self: Don't ever try again to season cast iron pans while you run the self cleaning feature on the oven because the oven will lock, you'll cook all the seasoning off your pans, and you'll be smoked out of your house for days.
  6. Enjoy your family and have fun on Thanksgiving and remember it's not about the perfect meal.

An Invitation for You: Thanksgiving Day Giveaway

To show you how thankful we are to have you in our space online, whether it be on FatWallet, Twitter, Facebook or the blog, we've been working with several of our merchants to bring you dozens of Giveaways this holiday season.

Today we have our Mixbook giveaway going on over at Facebook. Come visit us there for a chance to win a $700 gift card to Mixbook...perfect for your holiday greetings, photo books and gifts!

Thanksgiving day will be a special one. Lenovo is giving away 12 items, one every hour between noon and midnight right here on FatWallet! We hope you will join us and bring your friends and family!

Happy Thanksgiving to you! I hope your Thanksgiving day is fun and full of laughter, and some yummy eats too!

:)

Heather
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