It's hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a few short weeks away! Honestly where the heck did October go? And for that matter, I feel like September flew right by me as well! Anyway, it is officially time to start immersing in preparations for the holiday season (or as I like to call it, "The Entertaining Olympics!").
The November kitchen tools featured today are 3 important essentials for anyone hosting Thanksgiving dinner. While I know that there are plenty of other kitchen tools that are essential for cooking Thanksgiving dinner, these three tools are a great starting point. **Not to worry! Throughout the month I will be walking you through my entire preparation process for hosting my own Thanksgiving dinner this year. Menu planning, food shopping, tablescaping and more, will all be featured on the blog over the coming weeks. So without further adieu, let's get going on "Operation Thanksgiving Prep!"
Your roasting pan is the vessel that will be responsible for supporting your main Thanksgiving attraction (the turkey) while it cooks, so having a good quality roasting pan with roasting rack is vital! My roasting pan is the Large Stainless Steel Roaster with Rack from All Clad, and I would highly recommend it. This pan affords you the latitude to cook a vast array of meat/poultry types, from a weeknight roast chicken to a large Thanksgiving turkey. I love to layer the base of my roasting pan with an assortment of herbs, a delicious mirepoix and even on occasion some potato wedges (aka the ultimate one-pot dish!). The roasting rack allows the bird to sit above base of herbs and veggies while cooking, which prevents it from getting soggy but allows for the bird to soak up all of the flavors that are rising from below during the cooking process. This roaster is a common piece of cookware, but oh how it makes such a difference when cooking up a delicious Thanksgiving turkey!
Turkey might be the main attraction, but Thanksgiving just isn't the same without mashed potatoes. I am a huge fan of ricing my potatoes in order to achieve maximum fluffiness when making mashed potatoes. I absolutely love using my OXO 3-in-1 Adjustable Potato Ricer. You can adjust there perforation settings on this ricer and all of the pieces come off for easy cleaning. As if those weren't reasons enough for loving this potato ricer, Cook's Illustrated just awarded the OXO Potato Ricer Runner-up in this year's issue of Cook's All-Time Best Thanksgiving Recipes! Yes, I totally feel validated with my potato ricer selection. But in all honesty, it really is a great ricer and an essential tool for cooking Thanksgiving dinner.
Cooking twine is a Thanksgiving prep must have. Not only do you need to truss your bird before placing it in the oven in order to ensure it cooks evenly, but you also need cooking twine to make your bouquet garni (see this previous post)! An inexpensive item that is essentially for achieving that perfectly cooked turkey on Thanksgiving.