During the holiday season I get a ton of emails. Lately I have gotten a few emails regarding suggestions for the best equipment and tools for Thanksgiving. Since it was such a popular topic, I decided to write up a post including all of the information for everyone to see. I hope you guys find it helpful.
The first thing that any Thanksgiving cook needs is a good roasting pan. You want a pan that is sturdy and easy to clean. For this reason, I suggest that you get a nice stainless steel pan.
Now that you have your turkey pan and rack, you need a thermometer to make sure that the turkey is spot on perfect. I recommend a probe thermometer. A probe thermometer is a leave in thermometer that allows you to monitor the turkey without having to open the oven. The Chef Alarm is simple to use and has a large display.
I also recommend picking up a instant read thermometer. That way you can check the temperature of your sides and other meats. An instant read thermometer is an indispensable tool that will definitely improve your cooking skills.
Remember that the only way to know if your turkey is both safe to eat and not overcooked is with an accurate digital thermometer.
If you want the creamiest and most delicious mashed potatoes you need to use a potato ricer. After you boil your potatoes, run them through a ricer instead of using a potato masher. It will revolutionize the way you make mashed potatoes.
Nothing goes with mashed potatoes like gravy. I recommend a gravy boat that uses a tealight to keep it warm. That way you do not have to worry about the gravy cooling and thickening. There is nothing worse than getting gloppy gravy on your potatoes.
When it comes to making potatoes and gravy you need heavy duty cookware. I like to use a copper core heavy bottom cookware, because it heats quickly and it heats even. These Emeril Lagasse Copper Core Stainless pans are heavy but reasonably price. Hard to come by with this type of cookware. I have a set and love them. The construction is on par with my all-clad pans. I totally recommend them and at 1/3 of the cost, they are worth it.
When making stuffing and casseroles you need nice looking oven to table dishes. While the look is personal, you really want to choose something that works good and also looks good. You don’t want to have to transfer to a serving dish. Here is a list of nice dishes. I didn’t pick a specific one as everyone’s taste is different.
It is super hard to prepare dinner without a good knife. I recommend that everyone pick up a nice chef’s knife. I know that there a ton of cheap ones, but you really do get what you pay for. You want a knife that keeps a nice sharp edge that you can trust. A nice reasonably priced knife is a Henckles 8 inch chef’s knife. It is high carbon steel awesomeness. Plus it won’t break the bank.
You also need a nice carving knife. You don’t want to chop up the turkey. You want nice and delicate slices that each have a piece of skin. In order to do that you need a nice carving knife. I prefer one with a granton edge. The scallops break the surface tension and give you a cleaner cut.
Dessert time. Nothing screams Thanksgiving like pie. The key to a great pie is a high quality pie plate. My favorite pie plate is cheap and great looking. It comes in a two pack so that you can make an apple pie and a pumpkin pie.
These are some of my favorites. I will be updating this as I think of new items or get new questions. So keep coming back to check for new items.
If you have any questions this holiday season click the Ask Rex link above. I will usually get back to you in a few hours.