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Thanksgiving Tips and Techniques

  • Article

    How to Choose a Turkey

    This article provides everything you need to know to determining the type of bird to purchase for your Thanksgiving meal. Included is a comparison of fresh vs. frozen, and smart explanations about the variety of labels applied to turkeys, from organic to free range.

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  • Menu

    An Intimate Thanksgiving for Four

    If you're having only a couple of people over, a stuffed boneless turkey breast feels special, keeps with the turkey tradition, and cooks quickly. The stuffing of dates, dried apricots and toasted hazelnuts makes a harmonious combo with the turkey, while a few strips of bacon adds some much-needed fat and flavor to the lean white meat. Instead of a gravy, a simple Marsala wine reduction is easy and quite delicious. The Thanksgiving side dishes are also a twist on traditional elements: mashed potatoes get an earthy flavor boost from celery root; green beans are tossed with toasted hazelnuts instead of the usual almonds (which also picks up on the hazelnuts in the stuffed turkey); and the uncooked cranberry relish's fresh tang comes from rice vinegar. For dessert, return to a true classic, with the ultimate apple pie. Download a pdf of this menu, including all recipes, shopping list and timeline.

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  • Article

    Secret Ingredient Pumpkin Pies

    You wouldn't dream of a Thanksgiving dinner without pumpkin pie for dessert, but just because it's a holiday classic doesn't mean it has to get stale. Baker extraordinaire Nicole Rees shares her recipes for three pumpkin pies, each with a secret ingredient that provides an intriguing flavor twist: one is made with homemade caramel, the second is flavored with vanilla bean and bourbon, and the third gets a Caribbean accent with dark rum and muscovado sugar. All three pies use Nicole's basic pie pastry crust, which is blind-baked before filling to help it stay crisp. Nicole also shares tips on how to find, store and use the secret ingredients. 

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