We’ll admit it. The Thanksgiving feast isn’t the most naturally photogenic of meals. With turkey, gravy, stuffing and potatoes, there’s a lot of brown and beige in the mix. To make our Thanksgiving look as good as it tastes, we’re taking a cue from food stylists who make Thanksgiving look gorgeous for a living. Yep, we’re upping our garnish game this year. Edible garnishes are the best kind, and the flavors should always complement the dish they accompany. These suggestions from Food Network Kitchen are based on both color and dish texture. Check out the full gallery for ideas to spruce up every course of the feast.
While a glossy, juicy turkey may be a hallmark of Thanksgiving, for many the meal wouldn’t be complete without a scoop of mashed potatoes alongside it — and perhaps a few glugs of gravy on top. The beauty of mashed potatoes is that, unlike many stuffings and casseroles, spuds require only a few ingredients to prepare and they come together quickly. Check out Food Network’s go-to tips below to turn out your fluffiest batch of mashed potatoes yet, then visit Thanksgiving Central for the complete mashed potato how-to.
The Thanksgiving turkey is the centerpiece of your holiday spread and has the potential to be the most-remembered component of the feast, so when it comes to picking a recipe to help you make the bird, you want one you can trust. That’s where Food Network comes in. Stick to these classic, tried-and-true recipes to transform your turkey into a holiday showstopper — best of all, each is a can-do pick from one of your favorite chefs, like Anne Burrell, Alton Brown and Bobby Flay. Read on below to get their top turkey recipes, then visit Thanksgiving Central for more holiday inspiration.
5. Big, Brined Herby Turkey — The secret to Anne’s super-moist bird is her brining method. She lets the turkey chill in a salt water-herb bath for three days so the meat has a chance to absorb flavor before it cooks.
4. Good Eats Roast Turkey — With a 5-star rating and nearly 5,000 user reviews, Alton’s no-fail turkey is the ultimate in Thanksgiving simplicity. After brining the bird, he roasts it first at 500 degrees F so it develops a golden-brown exterior, then lowers the temperature as the meat turns moist and finishes cooking.
A good breadbasket is a necessity on any Thanksgiving table. A warm, fluffy roll sops up the last gravy, cranberry sauce and potatoes on a plate better than any utensil ever could, and there’s nothing better for piling on leftovers than a fresh slice — especially when the bread is homemade. This year, fill up your Thanksgiving Breadbasket with cornbread, biscuits, rolls and more from your very own oven.
No matter if this Thanksgiving will be your first time preparing the feast or if you’re a veteran host, chances are that with just days left until the holiday, you have a few questions about the meal on your mind. FoodNetwork.com is here to help.
This Saturday, Nov. 22, beginning at noon EST, our editors will be on hand during the premiere of Thanksgiving at Bobby’s to tackle your turkey day conundrums. From how to find the best brine for the bird to how to mix up fluffy mashed potatoes and bake the flakiest pie crust, tweet your question to @FoodNetwork using #ThanksgivingFeast or post it to Food Network’s Facebook page, and it may get answered.
We all know the food is the real star of the Thanksgiving table, but that doesn’t mean it can’t have some great supporting actors. I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite place cards (like the ones featured above on the top and bottom from Rifle Paper Co.), menus and other favorite paper items that are just begging for their debut alongside that turkey and pumpkin pie.
Although it’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is already fast approaching, I feel more excited than ever to celebrate the flavors of autumn with friends and family. There’s no better time to gather ’round loved ones, and for growing families like mine, Thanksgiving is made extra special when we’re able to share its traditions with young children.
When you look around your Thanksgiving table, the usual suspects are likely in sight: the buttery mashed potatoes, tangy cranberry sauce, from-generation-to-generation stuffing. If your family’s go-to menu is going from “traditional” to “monotonous,” perhaps it’s high time to try new seasonal side dishes that will reinvigorate your spread for years to come. Unexpected yet comforting, these newcomers are bound to become family favorites.
Long and vibrant, market-fresh Steamed Carrots with Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette (pictured above) may be simple, but they sure make a statement on the table. Steaming the carrots whole keeps them crunchy, while tossing them in vinaigrette while still warm helps them absorb all of the flavor.
The key to a successful Thanksgiving appetizer is simplicity: a fuss-free bite or two that will satisfy guests but not overfill them before the feast and, of course, be easy for the host to prepare, as he or she will likely be busy with other last-minute dinner prep. That’s where this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week comes in. Giada De Laurentiis’ quick-fix Fried Ravioli can be ready in just 30 minutes, and they come together with just a handful of ingredients, including timesaving store-bought ravioli.
For more turkey day inspiration, visit Food Network’s Let’s Celebrate Thanksgiving board on Pinterest.
Get the Recipe: Fried Ravioli (pictured above)
At this year’s New York City Wine & Food Festival, Rachael Ray was all about Thanksgiving — but not the huge blowout meal you might be thinking of. Instead, she took this meal of all meals off its anxiety-inducing pedestal, revealing tricks for a no-sweat day of and day after. Whether it’s nixing the giant bird altogether or going big with leftovers, her tips make it easy to keep your Turkey Day celebrations budget-friendly and meltdown-free. Here are the takeaways, which can be used on the big day itself or any day of the year: