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Old 10-28-2012, 12:39 PM   #21
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We have done Thanksgiving at our house the last few years for our families, and we may do it again this year. I think we planned for 40 last year and ended up having around 37 guests. Immediate family for the most part.

Pretty typical stuff: A turkey or two (we brined ours last year, and SIL brought 1 slightly burnt bird). 10-20 lbs mashed potatoes, a gallon of gravy, 8-10 lbs each corn, green beans, baked beans, stuffing. Broccoli casserole, green bean casserole, squash casserole, mac n cheese, cranberry gel, sweet potatoes, artichoke dip (fellow poster Simple Girl's slightly modified recipe!), italian bread, papaya salad, egg rolls, spring rolls, pad thai, other weird Laotian/Thai/Cambodian food I can't remember, regular rice, sticky rice. I know we had some desserts but I think I blacked out into a food induced coma before I had any sweets. Maybe pecan pie, pumpkin pie, chocolate cake, pumpkin rolls, banana bread?

I asked a few people to bring a dish to help out, since we have a tiny old in wall oven and can barely fit 1 turkey in it. It took a bit of logistical masterminding to get everything hot and ready concurrently but we pulled it off perfectly without too much effort. Maybe a few hours in the kitchen the morning of Thanksgiving, plus a 7 am wake up call to get the bird in very early, and a little thawing/brining prep 2 days prior.

One thing we learned is that cooking for a meal for 40 is only 2-3x the work of cooking for 4 if you have big enough pots and pans. And willing children who can serve as mini sous chefs. It does get a little Gordon Ramsay up in here at times though...
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Old 10-28-2012, 01:15 PM   #22
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We host around 10 every year. Started out with an oven turkey - went to frying for a few years, then back to the oven. This year I may smoke it. We have a lettuce salad, stuffing, corn, potatoes, a couple of other sides, a couple of pies and a couple of my homebrews to top it off. I'm going to do a practice turkey first - I've never smoked one before.
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Old 10-28-2012, 06:22 PM   #23
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We had the friends and rellies for Thanksgiving dinner, almost three weeks ago I think.
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:45 AM   #24
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I host Thanksgiving every year (Easter also) for about 22 people. I cook the turkey, potatoes and gravy and everyone attending brings the side dishes and dessert. In the past the sides have consisted of corn bake, sweet potato casserole, cooked cranberries, raw vegies and dip, cheesy brussel sprout bake, stuffing, pumpkin and caramel apple pies. One of my sisters usually brings a crockpot of meatballs or a brown sugar ham. Yum!!
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Old 10-29-2012, 09:27 PM   #25
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+1 on the deep-fried turkey. My BIL does the that duty, but uses an electric fryer. Be very careful with oil and a propane burner...

Funny, being a midwesterner transplanted in Texas, but we have oyster dressing in addition to the traditional giblet-style, though I prefer cornbread stuffing to the wheat-bread variety.
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Old 10-29-2012, 10:13 PM   #26
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We haven't decided what to do this year, but every year til now we have hosted. Last T-day instead of the traditional turkey with all the usual stuff we had a whole beef tenderloin on the grill, and everyone loved it, so we will probably do something different this year as well. It is so enjoyable to have the family together it almost doesn't matter what we serve. Almost.
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Old 10-29-2012, 11:33 PM   #27
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No matter who hosts Thanksgiving, we usually have enough people that even a big bird would not be enough. So, the supplement is either a big pork loin roast, or a big beef roast.

I usually try to make some additional side dishes besides the usual stuff to add some flavors, such as ratatouille that is layered and baked like the following photo that I linked in (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confit_byaldi), or meat-stuffed eggplants (the type that is really the oval size of an egg).

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Old 10-31-2012, 12:03 PM   #28
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We're going to my step-moms. It's a potluck - she provides the bird and ham, and everyone else brings the sides and deserts. Since it's San Diego - we'll probably eat out on the patio.

We'll be bringing roasted brussel sprouts and homemade pumpkin pie. And wine. Lots of wine.

Since my family LOVES turkey - we'll cook a turkey for ourselves sometime Friday or Saturday... and do homemade gravy, garlic mashed potatoes to go with. YUMMY.
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Old 10-31-2012, 12:14 PM   #29
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We're going to my step-moms. It's a potluck - she provides the bird and ham, and everyone else brings the sides and deserts. Since it's San Diego - we'll probably eat out on the patio.
I'll also be in San Diego for Thanksgiving. It will be the first time that I celebrate Thanksgiving in such mild climate. Usually, the leaves on the trees are a deep golden yellow, the air is brisk (ideal for a digestive stroll after dinner), and the fire is roaring in the fireplace. It's going to be interesting!
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Old 10-31-2012, 12:37 PM   #30
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I'll also be in San Diego for Thanksgiving. It will be the first time that I celebrate Thanksgiving in such mild climate. Usually, the leaves on the trees are a deep golden yellow, the air is brisk (ideal for a digestive stroll after dinner), and the fire is roaring in the fireplace. It's going to be interesting!
I've made a point to go walking on the beach every Christmas. When I lived in WA state, and later in suburban Philly - it was a special treat to come home to visit family - and either go walking, or even body surfing on Christmas day.

Just because you CAN.
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Old 10-31-2012, 12:46 PM   #31
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We will be replacing my Jeep with a used Ford Escape that week, so I don't need to go and spend more money on T-day food that I already have.

It will be just us two...I cooked a whole turkey just a few weeks ago, so I will probably pull out some of that along with turkey legs that I buy and freeze on a regular basis. I will cook the legs, and make some stuffing and gravy from scratch. I have jellied cranberry sauce on hand.
I like to buy acorn or butternut squash from a local farm stand and roast it in the oven with butter and salt and pepper. Simple and delicious.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:31 PM   #32
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I just made a 20# yesterday so that I would have enough for Thankgiving (where I will make another 20#'er). We will have 24 over so I wanted to have plenty of meat and gravy, thus the early roast. Will have about 7# to add to the T-Day bird plus about a quart of gravy.

So this Friday will have the neighbors over for some Tetrazzini and desert. I love the holidays and sharing food is the best.
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Old 11-10-2012, 07:28 PM   #33
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Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday also. Just reading this thread is making me smile. T-day has an extremely high reward-low effort ratio for me since all I have to do is eat (and watch football). DW wife and 3 DD's do all the cooking and my side of the family comes over so we get 15-20 in total. We do all the traditional stuff but the one thing that is different we usually have a whole broiled salmon. This year it may be done on the weber-style grill which would be a bit more labor for me.
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Old 11-10-2012, 09:37 PM   #34
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My dad will be hosting Thanksgiving dinner (but he doesn't know it yet).

DH and I have decided to go to MO the week of Thanksgiving and spend time with him. It occurred to me that I need to bring along a few things...a large casserole dish, my roasting pan, spices, etc... I'll go to the grocery store the day before Thanksgiving and get what I need. Instead of roasting a turkey, I'll roast two chickens. The menu will also include homemade cornbread stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans, whole cranberry sauce, gravy and rolls.

For dessert I'll make pumpkin, apple and pecan pies. The pecans will come from my dad's pecan tree.

The next day I'll make homemade chicken and dumplings. ...and cornbread fritters of course.

Dad has a couple of elderly neighbors and one neighbor in bad health. I might have to double everything I make. Hmmm, need to add plastic containers to the list too.

Edit...I think I'll make potato pancakes instead of mashed potatoes...the boys love them.
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:24 AM   #35
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The best turkey we ever did was smoked all day in a charcoal smoker. It came out the most beautiful mahogany color. Flavor and moistness was perfect. My BIL and I sat out there all day tending to it and finishing off a case of beer in the process.
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:34 AM   #36
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Does anyone else shamelessly take advantage of the turkey promotions the supermarkets run now? I am up to 4 birds in the freezer and counting.
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:36 AM   #37
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My oldest daughter will be hosting...just like the last 3 years! Isn't that what grown kids are for?
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:44 AM   #38
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We will be hosting Thanksgiving. We are very thankful for our family. After we retired to the Upstate of South Carolina, my son and family moved within 30 minutes of us. My daughter, who was working in Florida, just got a job in a town 40 minutes away. We will have the entire family together. We are blessed!
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:43 PM   #39
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Does anyone else shamelessly take advantage of the turkey promotions the supermarkets run now? I am up to 4 birds in the freezer and counting.
I do but usually only two birds . If they run a Turkey Breast special then I may add a few more.
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Old 11-13-2012, 01:57 PM   #40
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We will be doing Thanksgiving in the RV. Just me and the DW.. We did this last year and it was great ! Made all the extras the day before and cooked the turkey in the convection oven. Last year was in South Carolina this year Florida. Lots of fun.
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