Thanksgiving: Our Latest & Greatest Tips
These simple hacks will help you host a top-notch Thanksgiving Holiday
Thanksgiving will be here before we know it, and this year we’ve pulled together our very favorite turkey day tips—ones that will have you feeling truly thankful! Plan ahead and have a peek:
- THAW IT OUT – If you buy a frozen turkey, make sure to leave ample time for it to properly thaw. Refrigerator thawing is said to be the best, and the general rule of thumb is to allow one day of thawing for every four pounds of turkey. If you find yourself stuck with not enough time, don’t panic. You can thaw the turkey faster by submerging it in a cold water bath. This will thaw one pound every half hour. This turkey thawing food chart from foodsafety.gov will answer all of your questions!
- GIVE GENEROUSLY – How big should your bird be? This is a common question for first-time Thanksgiving hosts. Estimate the proper size by allowing 1 ½ pounds of turkey for each person at your table—this will ensure that you have plenty to offer the day of—and leftovers for the day after.
- TAKE THE TEMP – No matter how you decide to prepare the turkey, be sure to use a meat thermometer to make sure that it is properly and completely cooked. The turkey’s temperature should be at least 180 degrees F in the thigh area. When checking temperature, insert the thermometer deep into the meat but be careful not to touch the bone—this keeps your reading accurate.
- LET IT REST – For tender, juicy meat, it is important to let the turkey rest until it is only warm and not hot to the touch (at least 15 minutes). When you cut meat too soon, it steams, letting out all of the moisture. The goal is to slice the turkey when it has cooled enough that it does not steam. Since the turkey isn’t piping hot, warm guests’ plates in the dishwasher to keep things warm as they eat.
- GREAT GRAVY – There are lots of secrets to a more flavorful gravy…test them out ahead of time and find your favorite! Some swear that soy sauce makes the best, richly-flavored gravy (like this recipe from Bon Appetit, while others prefer to combine additional chicken stock with the drippings, starchy water from boiled potatoes, or even a white wine.
- FOOD HEALTH —be sure to get all leftover food into the fridge within two hours rather than letting it sit out as people lounge, and enjoy all leftovers within two days to avoid food spoilage. The holidays are a horrible time to feel sick—so follow these food safety tips to work on feeling your best.
- Try something new! These recipes from Cook’s Illustrated look delicious…browse through and find your new holiday staple!
- Too much to do but hosting? We suggest using a caterer! Our Thanksgiving day meal offerings can be custom made to your tastes—and ready to serve. Sit back and relax with some help from the Geppetto Catering team. From delicious turkey to all the trimmings—or just a few deserts and sides—we have you covered! Contact us today to plan.