Spend more time with family and less in your kitchen by incorporating these chef tricks into your Thanksgiving Day routine.
Waiting until Thursday to cook your bird is so last year. Take all the meat off the turkey's carcass, use a brine for maximum juiciness and roast it up to two days before. "The day of [Thanksgiving], you just have to roast them in the oven for 45 minutes," says Eddie Tancredi, chef and partner at Adega. "It comes out a lot moister."
Keep those young, picky eaters happy by preparing a meal just for them. Cook a second bird and use its meat for a Thanksgiving dinner casserole layered with stuffing and mashed potatoes, says Fahrenheit chef and owner Rocco Whalen. "It gives kids all those components of Thanksgiving and gets them to try different things."
Forget about boxed mashed potatoes. Score points with homemade spuds prepared the day before by replacing a third of the butter and cream with softened cream cheese. "Warm them up the next day, give them a little stir and they're so creamy and unctuous," says Jonathan Bennett, executive chef and partner at Moxie.
If slaving over a hot stove makes you cringe, preorder a feast. "Everywhere from restaurants to grocery stores are doing packages so you can pick up particular sides or the whole ticket," says Brian Woehrman, general manager at LockKeepers. "It's a difficult dinner to cook because there are so many components."