Everyday Food Blog

Contest! Win an oil-free turkey fryer

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I'm not sure how you feel about a fried turkey, but I love it! The skin is crispy, the meat is juicy, it's just all-around great . . . except for the 3 to 5 gallons of oil that you need for frying, the 10 hours that you need to get that oil up to frying temperature and the bio-hazard waste barrel that you need to order to get rid of that oil after the job is done. So when this little guy (aka The Big Easy) showed up on our doorstep we had to test him out because to be honest, we were all totally skeptical. No waaaaay was this thing going to make a fried turkey without oil. How would it even be possible? Read on to  hear how it turned out, and to get info on how to win one of these machines for your own experiments.We trudged outdoors with our "fryer" and our turkey to see exactly what was going on.

Set-up is easy. You attach a propane tank to it just as you would your gas grill. Season your bird (we added a spice mixture to the outside of half of our turkey just to see what would happen with and without). The Big Easy heats up in no time at all. From what we can tell, the ring of fire between the outer and inner wall creates a convection-like effect that keeps an even temperature circulating in the fryer at all times. Put the turkey in the basket sitting upright and lower it into the fryer. Come back in about an hour or so. You don't even cover it unless it's windy outside. It was as ridiculously easy as that.

The turkey came out with beautiful, evenly golden brown crispy skin on the outside. The spice mixture half did not burn. But the true test would come when we cut into the bird. Would it be juicy after "frying" for an hour? We were impressed! It was delicious! It tasted just like every oil-fryed turkey that I had ever eaten. Juicy, tender—how'd they do that?!?!? This is a Thanksgiving game changer. No oil, frees up the oven, relatively easy clean up, and it makes a great turkey.

Here is a little photo montage of our experience with The Big Easy and because we enjoyed it so much we wanted to give away The Big Easy to make one of your Thanksgiving dinners fuss free.

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To enter to win The Big Easy, we want to hear your worst Thanksgiving cooking disasters. Post your train wreck of a story in the comments, below, sometime before the end of the day on Wednesday, November 17. We'll read through your worst holiday meltdowns (humor appreciated) and select a winner, who will, in turn, receive a free Big Easy! Have fun! (Contest rules and information here.)

Comments (52)

  • avatar

    There was the Thanksgiving that the oven died halfway through roasting the turkey. We tried finishing it in the microwave, but it didn't taste very good, even if it was technically "cooked". We all filled up on side dishes and pie, and chucked the turkey in the trash. Oh well.

  • avatar

    My very first hanksgiving cooking, I was newly married and in New Mexico. We were the only married couple in the Air Frce squadron so, all the single guys were coming to eat at my house. I was doing it big and I thought right! Homemade cranberry sauce-until that day I thought it came in a can! That was easy-mashed potatoes lumpy! The turkey looked great! The stuffing didn't taste bad! Yes you guessed it I left the basg of neck etc. in the turkey! Finding that put a damper on the meal! For Christmas I cooked Ham!

  • avatar

    I wish i could enter but do not have a Thanksgiving one just something that didnt happen on Thanksgiving..I make a chocolate ice box cake..should be kept cold except before u eat it..well i had made some brisket and it was in the same kind of pan.. i got up early to put the meat on to warm and went back to bed....later when i got up i went to stir the meat and it was my ice box cake.... i was horrified to see white stuff on top of what i thought was the meat...then to think oh crap that was the dessert for the birthday party, i stated laughing and crying because i had no time to make another one...........worst cooking disaster i had...thanks

  • avatar

    my sister had a 20 pound turkey a friend gave her and i cooked it for 8 hours and still was not done i felt so bad.

  • avatar

    We were visiting my husband's family in Seattle for Christmas. His father is a wonderful cook and had planned an elaborate Christmas Dinner for us and all the extended family.

    He was already up and cooking by the time we all came downstairs Christmas morning. The pies were baked, the rolls were rising and in the top, built-in wall oven was an enormous, beautiful turkey. A few hours into the cooking process, Larry opened the oven to baste the turkey and all we heard was "OH NO!" The oven was not on. We assume that because the controls are digital, someone leaned against the oven and accidentally turned it off without realizing what they had done.

    After a few minutes of panic, I remembered a show I had watched a few weeks prior. The chef (I cannot remember which one) demonstrated his technique of cooking a turkey at very high heat, making for a very moist, flavorful bird, rather than cooking it for hours and hours, drying it out and leaving turkey jerky.

    I dashed off to the computer and quickly found a website showing that very episode. I explained my theory to my father-in-law and he said "Let's go for it." Since we had planned on serving dinner in less than 3 hours we had nothing to lose, so we cranked up the heat to 450 and held our breath.

    That turkey was the best I have ever had, and I'm not really a turkey kinda girl. Everyone loved it and Larry relaxed for the first time that day. Whew. Disaster averted!

  • avatar

    I was about 16-17 when I cooked my first Thanksgiving dinner. I was sooo happy to do this! I got up EARLY to get the turkey started. I got the turkey out of the refrigerator, seasoned it inside and out, put some stuffing inside for those that like a stuffed bird, put it in the roaster pan, into the oven it went!! Everything was going along as planned..but I was getting a little bit overwhelmed trying to do all the other things! *I was going to make it big time myself! All offers of help were refused!* lol Running around trying to make a few pies, relish tray, potatoes, sweet potatoe casserole, green bean casserole, etc...decorating and setting the table. I had put a timer on for the turkey, people started showing up, everything looked great! My dad wants to look at the turkey. *this was 4 hours later* He opens the oven door and guess what??? I FORGOT TO TURN THE OVEN ON!!! I just stood there and cried! At least my family is very loving. :) Brother ran to store and bought a fresh turkey, dad got the turkey deep fryer from his house, and a few hours later, we had THE BEST TURKEY EVER. lol

  • avatar

    Every year my whole family comes from around the country to celebrate Thanksgiving together in Destin, Florida. We went one or two big houses and have a great time swimming, playing on the beach, catching up and of course eating. Inevitably after a week with 25 family members in one house there may be some tense moments. One year all of the cousins who were now in their 40's got in an argument about who was the turkey in an old Thanksgiving play. One thing led to another and the fight escalated. My aunt came running out of her room, hair in rollers, face mask on, pink robe billowing behind her and started whacking at my cousin/her son with her high heeled house shoe. The fight was eventually resolved by watching an old video and now whenever there is an argument at Thanksgiving Aunt Penny threatens to get out her house shoe!

  • avatar

    I can honsetly say I don't have a Thanksgiving Diaster YET....but I will never forget the time my mom "decided" she was going to cook Thanksgiving Dinner the year her mom past away I think she was still grieving for she left all the insides of the Turkey when she served us, dad and mom got into a bit a agrument over it and needless to say my dad ordered pizza for us! Us kids didn't mind at all! Good times!

  • avatar

    I was cooking my second Thanksgiving dinner while living in Germany. We invited other couples serving in the Army there to join us. One of the wives said that she had the best ever recipe for cooking the turkey - baking it in a paper bag. Dinner was scheduled to be served at 2pm. The "great" method of cooking it in a paper bag didn't work so well, the turkey wasn't cooked until 8pm - dinner was VERY late and we were all starving.

  • avatar

    Well, I don't have enough experience as a holiday cook to have a good Thanksgiving horror story, but the no-oil fryer sure looks neat!

  • avatar

    My worst Thanksgiving cooking disaster has to be the first time I decided to have Thanksgiving after just gotten married. I had it all planned out "I thought". Guests were bringing the sides I just had to make the bird. I had the recipe that I had been saving just for this. It was a pomegrante glaze that was to be put on the bird every 15 minutes as it cooked. I followed the instructions to the letter. The bird was looking wonderful. I had my handy new digital themometer in it to go off when it was done and it had a pop up timer, nothing could go wrong. Well time went on and the bird still wasn't done, I kept peeking at the popup timer and it was still down. It was now almost an hour past eating time and the popup was still down. That's when I looked at the digital themometer, it just flashed an error message that we couldn't turn off. So that's when I decided to take the bird out of the oven and cut into it to see if we were close to being done. Well that is when I noticed that my nice glaze had seeped into the popup timer, I wiped it off and "pop". Then I cut into the bird, not a drop of juice came out. It was definately cooked! Lets just say everyone filled up on the sides, and left the turkey jerky alone!! Also I had to throw away my digital themometer, I guess it got so hot it just won't work after that, but to this day no one forgets my first thanksgiving turkey!!

  • avatar

    We were brining our turkey in a cooler outside in the snow. We let the dog out to go to the bathroom and he was taking forever getting back. We looked out the window and he had nosed open the cooler and was eating our turkey. Raw. We had to take the dog to the emergency vet and ended up stuck with a turkey breast. Not cool.

  • avatar

    Why can Canadians not enter this contest??

  • avatar

    Funny you should ask...Had a mishap with our turkey fryer one year. The crazy thing just wouldn't heat...which translates to one raw bird around lunchtime. We later baked the thing, but it was ready for more like dinner that night (after guests had left) than during lunch (when guests were there). That particular year, my sister worked at a restaurant which happened to have turkey, so she went and got some for our lunch meal. But, it wasn't the homemade divineness that we were hoping for. Made for memories though! This equipment looks so cool. I love the fact that I don't have to figure out what to do with all that oil afterward.

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    While in college, I learned that trying to blow dry a frozen turkey to thaw it out does not work; you just get a cramp in your hand from holding the blow dryer for so long.

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    My worst Thanksgiving cooking disaster is more like an ongoing disaster! I went to school for Baking and Pastry some time ago and since have tried every year to impress my family with the perfect Thanksgiving desserts. But EVERY YEAR something with my desserts goes horribly wrong! Two years ago I made a big deal about making my Mom's famous sweet potato pies. I made two and they never set up! The year before it was a pecan pie disaster! Its a joke with my husband and I that I can cook for anyone BUT my family. I got the hint when my Mom started asking us to be in charge of bringing basically anything BUT the desserts! Haha!

  • avatar

    unfotunately I haven't dad a disaster yet -knock on wood. however this sure would alleviate the stress of cooking on thanksgiving for my husband, his parents and sister as well as our 2 year old and 7 month old!

  • avatar

    In high school, my girlfriend and I decided to make Thanksgiving dinner for some friends. We had pumpkin pie, dressing, all the fixings and this frozen turkey. We thawed it out for a day (not long enough) and stuffed it and put in the oven at the recommended temp. It had the usual white pop-out indicator and we waited, and waited, and waited for this thing to pop out. It never did. After 5 hrs, the turkey was looking dark chocolate, so I made a command decision to pull it out. Needless to say, it was cooked, as in, on the surface of the sun cooked. Totally dessicated. Not to worry, I made lots of gravy from the stuff on the bottom of the pan which wasn't so bad although a bit smoky and mixed the gravy with some brandy I pilfered from her dad's liquor cabinet. We pre-sliced the turkey and poured the gravy over it, served it on the table and lit it with a match. It almost burned the table down! when the flames subsided, we valiantly tried to eat it. But nothing could save that bird then. We ate some of the other fixings and all went out for Chinese. My girlfriend and I broke up soon after that.

  • avatar

    The marshmallow topping on the yams almost always ends up on fire. It wouldn't be Thanksgiving without the flames.

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    My parents have an old-fashioned kitchen with just one tiny oven, and my Dad's a funeral director. Growing up, we used to cook some of our Thanksgiving feast in an oven in the apartment connected to the local funeral home. One year, on a trip back to check on some items in the oven, my Dad locked his work keys in the car. We waited 75 minutes on Thanksgiving day for a locksmith...and our stuffing was completely hard and brown. A bit longer, and the Fire Department may have been involved!

  • avatar

    When I was 19 I was living on my own overseas. Myself and a few of my friends got together one Thanksgiving for a nice meal, even though we didn't have a lot of money back then. So everyone brought a dish, and we all chipped in for a turkey- which I was in charge of to cook. This was my first Turkey to cook. So Thanksgiving came, everyone came over with their dishes. And I was cooking the turkey. It had been many hours, and so I checked on the turkey and moved one of the legs around to see if it was loose. I for some reason thought that if the legs fall off easy, then the turkey was done. None of us knew hhow to cook a turkey, obviously. So the leg was moving and the meat in that area appeared to be done. So we took the turkey out, we all sat down and were ready to eat. So I cut into the bird only to see that it was still VERY uncooked throughout most it. I felt pretty bad, but we all just laughed about it eventually. Thank goodness people brought side dishes. Side dishes is all we ate for Thanksgiving that year. I haven't made a Thanksgiving dinner since then.

  • avatar

    I come from a large family, my father has 3 sisters and I am the oldest of 12 cousins...my Nana was the matriarch of our family (and my best friend). About 20 years ago, my Nana at the time was living on her own in an apartment, we all gathered for our annual Thanksgiving feast at her place. This was the first time I can remember she hosting this dinner (typically one of her children had the occasion). Nana was so excited to have us all in her small apartment for Thanksgiving dinner, all set up aound folding tables and folding chairs. She put the bird in the oven very early as was the family tradition....when it was finally done and on the table an odd taste was detected....After investigating her cooking preparation and methods my aunts discovered Nana had been basting the turkey using Lemon Furniture Polish Oil!!! Sadly Nana is not with us anymore - but not a Thanksgiving goes by that we do not think about and LAUGH out loud about the Lemon Oil Turkey!

  • avatar

    My very first Thanksgiving turkey after I was married, turned out fine. But the gravy---what a disaster! I poured all the drippings into a pan, added my flour and water mixture, stirred and seasoned. Did not taste it till our guests and we were all seated and served. Ugh! Tasted like what it was.....thickened up turkey grease! I was horrified to see my Uncle pouring it over everything on his plate. It was a few years before I attempted to make it again.

  • avatar

    My first Thanksgiving at my future in-laws, I offered to make my Aunt Bertha's award-winning pecan pie. I was short on time so bought the frozen crust, put the pie in the oven and after an hour, took it out. When I served it realized I hadn't separated the two pie tins so it was totally un-cooked and runny. Pretty great way to impress my mother-in-law.

  • avatar

    I can tell a better story than a disaster. My stepfather has been doing fried turkey for over 10 years for our family. We have pictures of Sam (Stepdad) and his two sons staring at the fryer every year to make sure we were all safe. They are funny as only the outfits change from year to year. The staring and the stance are the same. Just a few more wrinkles here and there. Sam makes the BEST turkey ever with his injectibles and the beauty of his technique. Instead of honoring a disaster Thanksgiving, I think you should honor his glory of over 10 years of the juiciest, moistest fried turkey ever and the beautiful sides, etc that go with it. We have no disaster, only glorious memories and many more to come :-)

  • avatar

    Wow--no big disasters just little ones--but I could use some help! I have a very small kitchen so making Thanksgiving dinner is a big challenge! So much that I've been going to my kids who have bigger homes. How nice would this cooker be since it frees up the oven & seems to make a moist turkey! My big bird gets too dry. Would love to have my family all at my house again! I have a prefect spot outside by our grill just waiting for it & my family would love a big juicy bird at my house!!

  • avatar

    My first Thanksgiving after college I invited my parents to come stay with me - it was going to be so special and perfect; I wanted to show them I was so grown-up. I was pretty broke, and my dad offered to go grocery shopping with me. Unfortunately, the only open grocery store we could find was an Asian food store, and no one really spoke English. I already had a small turkey, luckily, but we really had to improvise with some of of our classic sides (my dad is still bummed we didn't find a way to incorporate shark fin soup). It totally reminded us of "A Christmas Story" and we still laugh about it to this day.

  • avatar

    My worst Thanksgiving was when I was 16 years old. My mom decided she was going to the beach with her boyfriend and wasn't going to cook dinner that year. My grandmother, sister and I had to fend for ourselves. I was somehow volunteered to cook the big meal for 3 of us; no biggie right? Being all of 16 the most I had really cooked in my life at that point was spaghetti with a jarred sauce. So I wasn't exactly confident in my culinary skills. Long story short: I camped out by the oven, kept opening it ever 20 minutes to see how the bird was doing, which in turn made the cooking time MUCH longer than it should have been resulting in a dry bird. Because I was so hesitant about cooking my first turkey, I forgot to make sides so when the turkey was finally finished, all we had was a dry bird and crunchy stuffing. What was I thankful for that year? That the local Chinese restaurant wasn't closed!

  • avatar

    My most disastrous Thanksgiving was when my sister ended up in the hospital with kidney stones. My brother had brought his new girlfriend to our house and while he and I took my sister to the hospital, my husband and my brother's girlfriend tried to finish preparing the dinner I had started. My brother, sister and I spent the whole day at the hospital and never did get dinner. We still laugh about it now and my brother didn't date the girl much longer. I think we scared her off.

  • avatar

    A couple years ago, as a newlywed in Uganda, I hosted my first Thanksgiving and invited two other Americans, a smattering of Europeans, and a host of Ugandans. Since no one had off work, we set it for 6 in the evening. The Americans were prompt, the Europeans straggled in by 7, and we got down to eating at 8, African time :) Everyone enjoyed the semi-cold food, though, which combined American dishes like turkey with stewed goat and German pastry. Turns out all cultures understand, "Get together, overeat, and be thankful."

  • avatar

    In 1988, I decided I would make a completely homemade, everything out-of-scratch, Thanksgiving dinner for my husband of only 10 1/2 months. I started when I got home from work at 5:30pm and didn't stop until 4:00am. I made homemade pie crusts for my pumpkin AND pecan pies. I didn't even use canned pumpkins! I toasted bread and chestnuts for my homemade stuffing (nothing from a bag or can for my husband!). I made sweet potatoes souflee, (you guessed it, not from a can). I made potatoes au'grautin because I heard my husband tell his mom that he LOVED her recipe. I got HER recipe, and made it. And, of course, the main attraction---the turkey. Everything looked beautiful on the table, especially the beautifully-browned turkey. When he started to carve the turkey, he noticed something inside. I had left the plastic inside! I DID NOT KNOW there was stuff inside the turkey. You would think I would have come across that in the articles I read on how to cook a Thanksgiving dinner (the articles I read recommended I bake the stuffing separately). In fact, I didn't even recall seeing to remove plastic on the turkey package instructions (maybe they do now). At first I was shocked as he was pulling it out! I thought I had bought a defective bird. Then I started crying because my dinner WASN'T perfect. We ended up just eating the drumsticks and a little of the top of the breast. I felt the plastic emitted a un-healthy vapor during high heat, so I ended throwing away the rest of the turkey.

  • avatar

    my brother said "I'll bring the turkey!" and he did and you guessed it, right out of the grocers freezer.
    the bird went right into cool water in the tub. dinner was delayed that year. his children, then his grandchildren have all enjoyed this story. It is a thanksgiving meal memory

  • avatar

    It was my first time cooking Thanksgiving at my house for the whole family, both sides.
    Everything was going great until I heard a large crash from the kitchen. I went and looked and laying on top of the turkey was the element from my oven! No way could we eat that all covered in metal and such so in the trash it went (while I was hiding and crying!) and instead we ended up having turkey/balogna/ham sandwiches since that was all the lunchmeat I had in the fridge! I had been complaining to my landlord that the oven wasn't cooking correctly and he had promised me that after Thanksgiving he would get me a new one. Needless to say I got a new oven, along with him getting me a new turkey as well.

  • avatar

    The worst thing I ever did was "cook" the turkey without ever turning on the oven!!!

  • avatar

    accidentally forgetting to take the little bag of organs out of the turkey before roasting!

  • avatar

    My first Thanksgiving I did not know all the extras came in the pouch "inside" the backend....well, these were baked in the pouch....but it was not to bad....just did not eat that end...lol

  • avatar

    When I was a young-married twenty-something, and my husband and I lived far from our homes, I decided to do a Thanksgiving just for the two of us. There was a lovely farmer's market in the small city where we lived, and I decided that a small fresh farm-grown turkey would be just the thing. Off we went to get the bird and fresh produce to go along with it on crowded market day. We found a lovely bird, the smallest one he had, and proudly carted it home with our other purchases.

    The next day, I chopped onions, mushrooms and celery in preparation for the stuffing, and got the other veges ready early in the day. A few hours before dinner I started to stuff the turkey. Where I expected to find the cavity, there was just turkey, no place to stuff it. It took me a minute or two to realize that I had bought an uncleaned turkey. Later, I learned this was called "in the round". The reason for it, was that the market had no sanitary cleaning facilities, and it was understood that customers would be cleaning their own fowl and fish.

    Anyway, I was horrified, as an uneviscerated turkey was way beyond my young experience. My equally young husband had never been a hunter and had no experience either. Gamely we figured out it was up to us to clean it if we were going to have our turkey dinner, and so we did.

    And it was wonderful.

  • avatar

    Luckily, I have not had a turkey incident...thats right. No turkeys have been hurt due to any cooking "accidents" in our house. However, side dishes have had a few bumps in the road. My fault, I admit it, cant blame anyone else but myself. I wanted to try and make dressing, which you may or may not know, is totally different from stuffing. Stuffing goes in the bird or cooked on the stove top but dressing is made in a pan. Southerns boast about their dressing and gosh darn, I wanted to make some outstanding dressing. I thought I followed all the directions carefully but obviously I did not. When I took the dressing out last year, it was how would say... runny. Yep runny! I called for my son and told him to find a grocery store and buy some Stove Top Stuffing. This year, Im buying the dressing.

  • avatar

    My cousin Invited the whole family over for dinner . Turkey was still frozen inside, he did let it thaw out enough. When we took it out of the oven it was still cold and he said he had it in there for an hour already. Then there was the little detail of not knowing to take the giblets out before cooking. The pop up needle thing broke so he was worried about not knowing if it was done and was worried he would burn the turkey. Not really a chance of that eh, LOL. Needless to say our Family was starving due to the lack of food. After hours of waiting we finally ate the side dishes we brought and we were all still starving. My cousin could not stop apologizing and kept saying it should be done any minute. A meal that should have taken a few hours went on for several long hours. Needless to say our family got tired of waiting on the frozen turkey and went home disappointed. The Turkey was not done until 10:00pm at night. My cousin fell asleep and burned it just as he was afraid of. Last time he was asked to host thanksgiving.

  • avatar

    One Thanksgiving we decided to free up our oven by cooking the turkey in a NuWave convection oven. We had never used it for this purpose before but had obtained a couple of recipes online from the NuWave forum so we thought we were good. Boy, were we wrong! After one hour of cooking time, the turkey started burning on the outside but the inside was not cooked. After another half hour the outside was black and smoke was billowing out the sides of the oven. To make matters worse, two of our stove's burners went out while we were cooking the sides. We then decided it was time to go to the store and see if there was something pre-made or try to get another turkey. Before we could leave for the store, we received a call from my sister-in-law telling us that my brother had been in an accident on the way home from playing flag football with some friends and was in the hospital. We ended up having Thanksgiving in the hospital cafeteria instead. By the way, my brother is doing fine.

  • avatar

    My microwave died Thanksgiving morning. I was having my in laws for dinner for the first time. Needless to say it made a big job even bigger.

  • avatar

    I've not had anything too terrible happen while cooking, but one year we were having friends over, our two toddlers,and then my husband and I came down with a stomach virus the day before Thanksgiving. We had to call everyone and put it off until Sunday.

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    My mother-in-law passed away two days before Thanksgiving last year. We didn't want to cancel Thanksgiving, but we also didn't want to eat take out. She had usually done all the cooking for the meal, so we divided the tasks up and got a meal on the table that she would have served. It was a nice way to pay tribute to her and all the things she had done for us in our lives that we were thankful for. This Thanksgiving will be especially hard because we won't be in the initial stages of shock, but we still plan to put together a great meal to honor her life.

  • avatar

    First, let me confess that I am not a cook. Sure, I have dreams of being domesticated and having an immaculate clutter free house and a wonderful dinner sitting on the table. But reality sets in, and I realize my house will NEVER look like the cover of a magazine. I remember one of my first Thanksgiving dinners I was preparing when I lived in Rhode Island. I'd gotten the turkey cooked, and realized that I'd forgotten the cranberry sauce. Considering it IS a staple to the Turkey Day dinner, I ventured out in search of that elusive can of cranberry sauce. What I wasn't counting on was the kid who lived downstairs leaving one of his Matchbox cars in the middle of the stairway. Nor falling down a flight of stairs and ending up with a fractured right arm. I had NO clue that the thing was even fractured, although it turned purple after I did it- I just assumed it was a bad bruise. And I still got the cranberry sauce, ate my dry turkey and drank quite a few glasses of wine. The next day, after the effects of the wine wore off, the pain was pretty bad. So hangover and all, I managed to drive myself to the hospital on Black Friday since hubby was working. After a series of x-rays was done by a grim looking technician, a stern looking doctor came into the room and scolded me for not coming in sooner. And then he told me to save the date...for the next day as I'd be having emergency surgery and a plate put into my arm :( and 6 weeks in a cast afterward followed by physical therapy for good measure. It was a rough Christmas and New Year's back in the day, as I sat home miserable and in a cast. The biggest surprise was when the cast came off, and I saw the 6 inch scar on my forearm which remains to this day. All because of Thanksgiving tradition and that darn can of cranberry sauce! (which explains why cranberry sauce has not been on my turkey day menu for the past 10 years lol)

  • avatar

    I thought I had watched a lot of stuff on baking turkey well it was apparently not nearly enough. We ended up with what I called turkey jerky and mashed potatoes with lumps no gravy because it tasted burnt so. I would love to try this. I am much better now lol. Thanks so much for the contest :)

  • avatar

    Flaming Turkey Incident of 2006

    Did you know that two small turkeys take up quite a bit of space in a oven?
    Did you also know that when baking two small turkeys (because the original large bird remained frozen after three days of fridge defrosting) in oiled paper bags you should make sure the paper isn't touching the side of the oven?

    Why?

    Because once you stop drinking the wine you're supposed to be cooking with, you'll realize that the smoke in your house is coming from the kitchen and upon opening the oven door large flames will shoot out at you.
    These flames will singe off your eyebrows and arm hair as you pull flaming poultry from the oven and send it sliding across the kitchen floor where your roommates will effectively beat it to death, stopping the fire.
    Then they'll spend 30 minutes picking all the pieces of burnt paper off because the IGA is closed and the remaining turkey won't feed the 40 people who will be arriving in 5 hours.

    You'll eventually make more gravy than you thought was possible to combat the dryness and when people comment on the smokey flavor you'll say you tried a new marinade.

  • avatar

    One year something went horribly wrong in the oven and turkey grease must have spilled on the heating element. It started a fire that blew open the oven door and blackenedd the bottom of the turkey. Luckily the fire went out pretty much right away but the house filled with billows of smoke and we all had to go outside. I remember thinking it was quite exciting as a child, but my poor mom was pretty unhappy! I think we mostly ate side dishes that year.

  • avatar

    My sisters & I swap doing the holiday cooking. It had been a few years since I had Thanksgiving, but 2 years ago I did it. It was awful! to make matters worst my in-laws attended. All the sides were perfect, the salad was beautiful, stuffing, great apps, perfect pies waiting to be eaten. But the turkey...Ugh don't know what went wrong. I defrosted, brined and basted with all morning into the afternoon. I let it rest as we ate our salads. When I started to carve the bird the dark meats were not cooked. I did not know what to do. I carved what I could but it was not enough...my family is a darke meat eaters. So quick thinking I used my microwave to finish the cooking. Needless to say I don't volunteer for Thanksgiving.

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    Back in the 1970's, I was going to have a Thanksgiving dinner for my Aunt who lived about 10 miles away from me. We had a windstorm that caused a power outage all day long so I couldn't cook anything. I was going to go get her and bring her to my house for dinner. She didn't have a power outage or a turkey to roast so I went over to get her to take her to a restaurant for dinner, but none was open so we finally wound up eating hot dogs and canned baked beans for our Thanksgiving dinner. Jan

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    my mom is the best baker in the family, and she brings all the deserts. my daughter-in -law makes a mean Mac and cheese that keep kids at the table. my daughter's broccoli and cheese casserole is the only green some will eat. and me? well, I missed the cooking gene, so I bring fruit and nuts. what I wouldn't do for a chance to try the turkey cooker. that sounds like something I'd like to be known for!

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    Years ago, when my husband I were in college, we lived in a house with 4 other college students. We were all going to be home for Thanksgiving one year, so we bought a monster size turkey. It needed to thaw, so we put it on top of the refridgerator while we all left for the day because I owned a cat and it was the day b4 so couldn't thaw in fridge. Came home, turkey gone. We found it at the bottom of the stairs along with the feasting cat. He had somehow knocked it off the fridge, drug it across the kitchen, down one flight of stairs to a landing, then another flight of stairs. We were poor college students -- cut off a giant hunk and cooked it anyway.:)

  • avatar Author Comment:

    Hi Michele,
    The contest is over, but that story is classic! Thanks for sharing, and happy Turkey Day!

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