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Is anyone having something other than turkey on Thanksgiving?


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If so what are you having?   Since we are staying home for Thanksgiving I am thinking of not doing a turkey.  We normally go to a family thanksgiving where the host does one.  We haven't ever cooked one before, and it just seems like a ton of work.  That and nobody in my family likes turkey that much.  Some of my kids will eat it, but not really like it. 

I am thinking a ham or a chicken.  

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My kids really wanted pizza this year, but there is one kid who doesn't like homemade and nothing's open this year. Honestly, I don't know - no one agrees on any meal here. There's always one kid who poo-poos the meal, so I haven't decided. It won't be turkey, although I do have a turkey breast in the freezer. So maybe?

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We usually have tofurkey or field roast (both vegetarian) but they don’t seem to be easily available this year. For many years we challenged ourselves with various ethnic foods. I’m undecided this year but want to get my grocery delivery order completed soon. Thanksgiving is also our anniversary this year so I want to make it special. 🙂 

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This might be the first year we have a turkey since my parents stopped hosting. We do a themed meal. We did a taco theme last year, I think. Soft & hard-shelled tacos, spanish rice, homemade (canned) salsa, fresh pico, etc.

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For the past 8-10 years, we've had our "traditional non-traditional" Thanksgiving Day dinner -- a yummy super easy to make baked pasta dish. (Well, the rest of the family has it, as I can no longer do pasta/corn/wheat/gluten, and I have left-over turkey from the fabulous turkey that we do early in the week.)

Our turkey is brined, roasted with a cornmeal/butter pad over the breast to hold in juice, and then the last 40 minutes put on the grill over mesquite chips for a wonderful crisp skin and a slightly smokey flavor to the juicy meat.

So, we have the best of both worlds -- turkey (early) and then not-turkey for a super-relaxed holiday. 😄 


ETA:
Stuffing a turkey requires over-cooking the bird in order to cook the stuffing fully -- resulting in tough, dry tasteless turkey. So   if you really want to have stuffing (we never do, but in case others do), don't stuff your turkey, but instead cook your stuffing as a side dish (which makes it dressing rather than stuffing), and when the turkey is done, baste it and squirt a baster-ful of turkey juice over the dressing for flavor and finish cooking the dressing; meanwhile, tent the turkey for 15-20 minutes to allow it to reabsorb juice before carving. Once you've carved, squirt a baster-ful of juice over your platter of turkey meat for even more juice absorption. Makes it nice and juicy, and extra flavorful!

Edited by Lori D.
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We are having a nice pork loin with Bavarian sauerkraut (my FIL's recipe), mashed potatoes and gravy (noodles for the 1 person who doesn't like them), carrots, rolls, maybe Ambrosia, and Hershey's chocolate cake and frosting for dessert.  We have monkey bread for breakfast :-).

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We're still undecided what the family will do.  Option one is a family gathering around the campfire which will necessitate a non traditional Thanksgiving meal. Option two is a traditional Thanksgiving meal where we meet up at one persons house outside just long enough to swap food (since we all make different parts of it) and then return to our own homes to eat.  Option three we are ordering a special take out meal - we are thinking Mission BBQ because we've never been there and so many people here have been raving about it.  Option four I just make something here which will definitely not be turkey because I don't have any in the freezer and I only buy them when they are marked down after Thanksgiving.

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We usually are not home for thanksgiving.  We will be this year, just the 4 of us.  All of us are ho hum on turkey.  I'm leaning toward a beef wellington assuming I can get all the stuff.  Thanks great British baking for the constant binge watching inspiration!

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We're ordering a turkey roulade to go, which I'd never heard of before this year!  It's pre-cooked and you just pop it in the oven for an hour.  It's turkey that is kind of rolled up into a log, with a stuffing of cranberry, nuts, fresh herbs, etc. in the middle.  Sounded so simple!   We'll make the sides because I like that part, like mashed sweet potatoes and green beans and pie.  🙂  It'll be the first time we've had a small TG since I was a child.  It'll be just 4 of us.  

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We have a killer lasagna that I make once a year.  Yummy salad, I’ll make focaccia , and  a few pies.  There will be five of us. Our three, plus my nephew and his wife, who both work from home and rarely go out.  Won’t be seeing our kids, grandkids, my sisters, or my dad. Maybe next year. 

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4 hours ago, happi duck said:

We don't like turkey.  I cook a vegan roast and steak for the meat eaters.

I am open to change this year because of shopping challenges.

What is the vegan roast?  Curious because we have some vegans in our family!

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58 minutes ago, J-rap said:

Care to share the recipe?  🙂 

Happy to oblige! Originally out of Bon Appetit magazine:

Baked Rigatoni with Ham, Tomatoes, and Feta

I get one of those ham steaks and heat it up in a casserole in the oven while cooking up the rigatoni. I serve with hot, fresh rosemary bread, and a nice leafy green salad with olive oil/balsamic vinegar.


ETA
If you really hated ham (this is about the only ham my family eats -- we are NOT ham fans 😉 ), you could substitute grilled chicken. Or, if vegetarian and leave out the meat all together. I don't see any way of making it vegan -- feta and mozzarella are what make this a killer dish. 😉 

Edited by Lori D.
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52 minutes ago, J-rap said:

What is the vegan roast?  Curious because we have some vegans in our family!

I usually buy a Tofurkey but so far this year I've just seen a couple options from Field Roast available.

Some people don't like Tofurkey.  I like it!  There are instructions on baking it with a marinade and some veggies.  It also helps to slice it thinly.

I've had Field Roast "sausages" that were good so I'm pretty confident switching to their "roast" if needed.

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4 hours ago, mlktwins said:

We are having a nice pork loin with Bavarian sauerkraut (my FIL's recipe), mashed potatoes and gravy (noodles for the 1 person who doesn't like them), carrots, rolls, maybe Ambrosia, and Hershey's chocolate cake and frosting for dessert.  We have monkey bread for breakfast :-).

My dh might show up at your door if I tell him this because this was his favorite meal his mom used to make, and which I almost never do. (I don't think much of pork loin.) 

And Hershey's Chocolate Cake - OMG, that is the best chocolate cake! 

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When I was in the grocery on Saturday, I saw they had TurDuckIn. I have never had TurDuckIn, but I am intrigued after having seen a cooking show on it. Does anyone here like them? I didn't buy one, but I am curious about them. 

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35 minutes ago, Lori D. said:

Happy to oblige! Originally out of Bon Appetit magazine:

Baked Rigatoni with Ham, Tomatoes, and Feta

I get one of those ham steaks and heat it up in a casserole in the oven while cooking up the rigatoni. I serve with hot, fresh rosemary bread, and a nice leafy green salad with olive oil/balsamic vinegar.


ETA
If you really hated ham (this is about the only ham my family eats -- we are NOT ham fans 😉 ), you could substitute grilled chicken. Or, if vegetarian and leave out the meat all together. I don't see any way of making it vegan -- feta and mozzarella are what make this a killer dish. 😉 

The whipping cream is so interesting!  Is it whipped when you add it?  I bring dinner to my dad twice/week and promised him I'd bring a fancy pasta dish next time.  I think he'd love this.  🙂 

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35 minutes ago, happi duck said:

I usually buy a Tofurkey but so far this year I've just seen a couple options from Field Roast available.

Some people don't like Tofurkey.  I like it!  There are instructions on baking it with a marinade and some veggies.  It also helps to slice it thinly.

I've had Field Roast "sausages" that were good so I'm pretty confident switching to their "roast" if needed.

Thanks, I'll keep this info tucked away.  I'm slowly leaning more toward a vegetarian diet myself, so am always interested in hearing about new ideas like this.

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1 minute ago, J-rap said:

The whipping cream is so interesting!  Is it whipped when you add it?  I bring dinner to my dad twice/week and promised him I'd bring a fancy pasta dish next time.  I think he'd love this.  🙂 

No no, not whipped -- just heavy cream poured over.

It really is fast and easy, and makes a boatload, so you'll have plenty to share 😉 . Use a very BIG baking dish with deep sides to make it easier to do that mid-baking stir. I also set the baking dish on the next size up of cookie sheet with sides, just in case anything bubbles over and escapes the foil covering. 😉 

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53 minutes ago, Lori D. said:

No no, not whipped -- just heavy cream poured over.

It really is fast and easy, and makes a boatload, so you'll have plenty to share 😉 . Use a very BIG baking dish with deep sides to make it easier to do that mid-baking stir. I also set the baking dish on the next size up of cookie sheet with sides, just in case anything bubbles over and escapes the foil covering. 😉 

Okay!  That's funny, because I feel like I only learned a few years ago to use BIG bowls, pans, etc. when I cook...  SO much easier!

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6 minutes ago, J-rap said:

Okay!  That's funny, because I feel like I only learned a few years ago to use BIG bowls, pans, etc. when I cook...  SO much easier!

lol, I've been cooking for decades, and I STILL have a tendency to use the pan where it all *just-barely-fits* -- which often makes a mess or causes problems down the line. Sooo... you're further ahead in the learning curve than I am! 😄 

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1 hour ago, Quill said:

When I was in the grocery on Saturday, I saw they had TurDuckIn. I have never had TurDuckIn, but I am intrigued after having seen a cooking show on it. Does anyone here like them? I didn't buy one, but I am curious about them. 

Eh, it's fine. More of a novelty item than anything else. I personally don't think it's worth paying a premium to eat my turkey, duck, and chicken all at the same time, lol. 

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Prime rib with a mustard/horseradish sauce if I can find an affordable one....if not, spiral ham from Costco.

Just today, we officially cancelled the normal large family event that we host every year. It will just be 4 of us so even if the rib is expensive, it will still be cheap in comparison to a dinner for 20. LOL 

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We never do turkey, because we're a vegetarian/vegan household. We've experimented with a variety of things over the years, but mostly wind up with a meal that consists of all the stuff other people consider side dishes: mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes and cornbread and some kind of salad and often a rice/lentil pilaf and potato pancakes with home-made applesauce (yes, two kinds of potatoes).

No one ever seems to go away hungry. In fact, we don't usually bother with dessert, because no one has room.

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We hate turkey, in general, so we are spatchcocking a free range, slow-growth chicken. Yumm!!! We do aged prime rib for Christmas. We are expanding our circle by one to accommodate my bestie (who also works from home and recently moved to our area). Four ppl. That’s it. Our proteins will be chicken, shrimp, and a small amount of ham. It’s still gonna be super fun! My bestie (and kids’ godmother) plans to take the kids fishing. They’re thrilled.

So...

Herbed chicken, cornbread dressing, green beans w/garlic, twice baked potatoes (for DD only), pineapple cake, sweet potato pie, cranberry sauce and Mac n’ cheese.

Edited by Sneezyone
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9 hours ago, Jenny in Florida said:

We never do turkey, because we're a vegetarian/vegan household. We've experimented with a variety of things over the years, but mostly wind up with a meal that consists of all the stuff other people consider side dishes: mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes and cornbread and some kind of salad and often a rice/lentil pilaf and potato pancakes with home-made applesauce (yes, two kinds of potatoes).

No one ever seems to go away hungry. In fact, we don't usually bother with dessert, because no one has room.

I love the idea of nothing but side dishes.   We have ended up this way on more than one holiday and enjoyed it a lot.   However, we always have room for dessert!

1 hour ago, MercyA said:

We're having pizza. 🍕

Yum!   Now I wish we were having pizza too.  Luckily there are a couple more holidays coming up and at least one will be pizza.

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1 hour ago, MercyA said:

We're having pizza. 🍕

 

I'd love to do pizza.  Just pizza and dessert would be perfect for me, but my kids don't like pizza and they love Thanksgiving dinner because there's so much food. They'd be disappointed with just pizza.  

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dh suggested thai, and a couple of us jumped on board.  One protested loudly.  I'm not quite sure what he's protesting - could be lack of turkey, could be lack of sides, could be lack of china/silver/crystal (he likes them).  Could be something else.  and I'm currently in another state/

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The kids requested duck, however, we don't have any stores in my area that sell them.  Also, we invited DH's parents over and FIL really looks forward to turkey dinner, and he doesn't care for "exotic" foods like duck, so turkey it is.

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I think our oven plan Thanksgiving morning is going to be (recipes linked)...

1) Bake the pie.

2) Start the butternut squash.

3) Roast a chicken.

And we'll have cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, probably spinach and artichoke dip with crackers... 🥰

We might reserve the squash for dinner. It's just going to be the three of us.

Edited by Carolina Wren
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