If Murphy's Law is a real thing (and I've experienced several episodes that could confirm its existence), Thanksgiving might be the ultimate test. On the best of days, Turkey Day menu-making is a well-choreographed dance that could rival some of Moscow's finest ballerinas. It's one part precision, one part pure luck. At least, in my opinion. For decades, I've watched my grandparents pull off flawless feasts with seemingly very little effort. Now that at least a portion of that responsibility is turning to me, I'm going to need some help.
I've pulled together five Emergency Resources that will likely get me and my fam through next week's harried prepping and cooking hours. Maybe they'll be useful for you and yours, too.
1. Butterball's Turkey Talk-Line. For the last three decades, turkey-cooking professionals have manned the Talk-Line (1-800-288-8372) to answer your pressing questions about the season's most popular fowl. If you can't Google your way to a helpful answer, Talk-Line can probably help.
2. Southern Living Test Kitchen Holiday Hotline. The Test Kitchen experts from our sister brand, Southern Living, are ready to answer any of your Thanksgiving questions, whether you're below the Mason-Dixon line or above. Their Test Kitchen experts (1-800-366-4712 ext 66531; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter and Facebook: #SLHotline) are on hand to sort through a recipe with you, offer no-fail substitutes, and help you get organized.
3. Crisco Pie & Baking Hotline. If the bird gets its own dedicated phone staff, surely the second most important food group (and the star, in my opinion) gets one, too. The Crisco Pie & Baking Hotline (1-877-367-7438) can answer all your baking questions. With a whole library of videos, a plethora of handy tips, and recipes that are sure to save the day, I know I'll have the Hotline on speed dial in case my grandfather's beloved buttermilk pie goes south fast.
4. Real Simple's Best Cleaning Tips. You know the saying, "Fake it 'til you make it!" Well, Real Simple's How to Fake Clean a House is pure genius. If you're like me and find yourself desperately trying to vacuum and whip potatoes at the same time, use these tips to make your house appear spotless quickly so you can focus on the meal. Other great cleaning resources: The Best Route to a Cleaner Kitchen and Quick Cleaning Solutions for Every Room.
5. Time for Turkey Spotify Playlist. Every good turkey needs its own cooking playlist. Spotify to the rescue! Tell the music-streaming site how large your turkey is (in pounds), select a music genre, and Spotify's Time for Turkey will populate a playlist for your bird's cooking time. When the turkey's finished, so is the playlist. Pure genius.