Back when I had the store, Thanksgiving was my favorite holiday. It was always less stressful than Christmas and it involved dispensing cooking tips and tricks and often times, some beautiful equipment!
There were many customers who were hosting their very first Thanksgiving meal, there were those who were well-seasoned at the art of this holiday and of course, many who were in the middle.
It didn't matter whether it was their first or their twentieth time, there was still that excitement, anxiety and anticipation of hosting this kick off to the beginning of the winter holiday season. Our job was to calm their nerves by suggesting, supplying and delivering the knowledge and tools they would need to make the day a success!
To make this an easy process, I developed what I called the Thanksgiving Checklist- similar to a grocery list only for the kitchen tools and equipment you might need or will need to make that bird and the meal a knockout. Many cooks surprisingly will have a lot already on the list, so it's a matter of a fill in. If you are just starting out, beg and borrow is the way to go- especially if it's family! They can lend you the platters and the serving pieces, or the roasting pan- don't get discouraged! It's a work in progress so anything you do buy, you will use year after year if you choose carefully.
So, without further adieu in order of "necessary" to "man it would be awesome to have that....", is my list:
instant read or leave-in type and oven)
Sieve (for straining the gravy)
Carving Knife and Fork
Cutting Board for carving
Timer ( esp a triple timer-great multi-tasker!)
Measuring Cups (wet and dry)
Food Mill (comes in handy for applesauce etc)
Platter (the essential to serve the bird on- I like vintage)
Potato Ricer (makes execellent mashed potatoes with great texture!)
Whip Cream Maker
I am sure I will be adding to this as the week goes on- there may be some things I completely left out! The links are just suggestions and by all means, please shop around for best price etc! I happen to love using vintage serveware and glasses, but you can mix it up however you like! Table linens will be necessary- a tablecloth makes for an elegant presentation, and of course you will need napkins- please try to use cloth- it's one time of year that you must ditch the paper (if you use those that is).