Every year, millions of Americans go "over the river and through the woods to Grandmother's house" for Thanksgiving Dinner. Many, however, must stay home and cook the dinner themselves for the first time. This may be because finances do not permit them to travel, gas prices and airline costs are prohibitive, illness in the family, or they may just wish to establish their own holiday traditions. It could also just be "their turn" to host a rotating family meal.
With these thoughts in mind, the writers and editors of The Spoof offer these ideas, both do's and don'ts, to assist you in preparing your Thanksgiving Dinner:
1. Do your grocery shopping early. If you go to Safeway on Wednesday evening expecting to find a turkey, you'll probably end up cooking a rump roast.
2. Thaw that turkey. They are frozen. They weigh over twenty pounds. They take a day and a half to thaw at room temperature or three days in the refrigerator (best way). Thawing turkeys in the bathtub, the dishwasher, the microwave, the oven, and in the furnace closet are all good ways to give your family food poisoning.
3. Take off the plastic wrap from the outside. It just doesn't taste very good. Even if it is an expensive Butterball or Honeysuckle White, keeping the wrap on is not the same as the designer label on your jeans.
4. Remove the giblets, the neck, and that little bag full of turkey guts from the inside before baking.
5. Remove the metal piece that holds the legs together before you put the bird in the microwave to thaw on Thursday morning (because you forgot to follow instruction number 2).
6. Make more than one kind of pie. Some of us hate mince meat. Some don't care for pumpkin. Some expect apple. Have a variety to please everyone and expect them to want to take the extra home. This way, you can also sneak the leftover turkey, your neighbor's cranberry relish, Aunt Edna's brick hard rolls, and anything else you have too much of into their bags so you don't have to overstuff your refrigerator.
7. Have a television on the football games. If you are hosting the holiday, you are also expected to have a color television (32 inches or larger) and provide the beer, sodas, chips, and pretzels before the big meal.
8. Do serve plenty of mashed potatoes. This way, people can hide their overcooked turkey or beets underneath something and sneak it to the trash can.
1. Don't cook the giblets (a.k.a. the bird guts) and chop them up and add them to the gravy. Feed them to the dog because only he really finds them edible.
2. Don't serve peas with the meal. Seven out of eight Spoof staffers interviewed hate them and all of us have seen the kids flick them at each other at the children's table.
3. Don't serve fruitcake. Ever. At all. Even at Christmas. It sucks and we hate it.
4. Don't serve the meal unless it is halftime, between games, or after the second NFL game. That's just stupid.
5. Don't set the men where they cannot see the television set (pre-game, post-game, and half time shows are still important and must be watched).
6. Don't expect any of your eaters to follow your diet. Regardless of what Jenny Craig says, there is no such thing as low fat, low cal, or sugar free on a holiday.
7. Don't put your good china on the kid's table. If you chose to break rule number 4 on the don't list, don't give china to the men or teenage boys either.
8. Don't make everyone go around the table and list something their happy for. Ater men have been waiting all day to eat because the wife wouldn't cook lunch and insisted they have a light breakfast, men don't care about being thankful for anything but a full plate and a good view of the cheerleaders at half time.
We hope that these tips will help the new host and hostess properly prepare and serve their holiday meal. The editors and writers of the Spoof wish everyone a safe and Happy Thanksgiving and want you all to know that the Cowboys are favored by 3 1/2 and the over/under is 38.