It's your worst nightmare: intimate dinner or big splashy event, and something goes horribly wrong. The causes can be legion. The only known antidote: humor & quick thinking.
Big bird, wee pan
Who: Jennifer Drawbridge, nurse, midwife, and Cooking Light Stress Bunny columnist, Lincolnville, Maine
Result: Big kitchen, thick smoke, poor visibility.
The first year I hosted Thanksgiving in our first house, my mom and dad insisted on bringing a turkey. I’d celebrated the holiday with them for 30 years by then, but I had forgotten about my mom’s rule of turkey-to-person ratio: The turkey should always be twice the size of the largest child. That year, feeding six, they showed up with a turkey that weighed more than 21 pounds. I didn’t own a big roasting pan. We’d bought one of those ordinary flimsy tin pans from the grocery store, but this turkey was so huge that when we put it in the pan, it looked like an SUV parked on a coaster. (continued on next slide)