We are right in the middle of the biggest cooking week of the year with Thanksgiving approaching. Luckily, there are many resources to help with last minute advice about preparing holiday favorites.
The granddaddy/mommy of them all is the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line. Since 1981, they have been offering advice on all things turkey. One of the most important questions – how long does it take to thaw a turkey? Answer: 1 day for every 4 pounds.
Also on their website is a wealth of information on thawing, cooking and carving a turkey, plus how to choose a turkey in the first place – Butterball How-To’s. And you’ll find sections on how to check for doneness and all-important food safety.
Butterball Turkey Talk-Line 1-800-BUTTERBALL (1-800-288-8372)
Nov. 21 – Nov. 22: 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. EST (Weekend prior to Thanksgiving)
Nov. 23 – Nov. 24: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. EST (Mon. & Tues. before Thanksgiving)
Nov. 25: 8 a.m. – 11 p.m. EST (Wed. before Thanksgiving)
Nov. 26: 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. EST (Thanksgiving Day)
Nov. 27 – Dec. 23: 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. EST (Weekdays)
Dec. 24: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. EST (Christmas Eve)
For more tips and the final word on all things related to turkey safety, go to the USDA’s Meat and Poultry Hotline. Here you can find some basic Turkey Safety Guidelines and Tips.
Or call them toll free at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. EST
Note: The Hotline is open on Thanksgiving Day from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., EST, but closed on other Federal government holidays.
For pie and baking help, call the Crisco Pie & Baking Hotline – 1-877-367-7438. In its 10th anniversary year, the Crisco Hotline offers helpful advice on any baking woe, including tips on how to keep a pie crust from getting soggy or how long to freeze an unbaked pie.
Crisco did a pie survey recently and found that 96% of American eat pie during the holiday season. (Yay!) What’s the biggest challenge to all those pie makers? 52% say it’s making the crust from scratch. 20% have trouble knowing how long to bake their pies and 18% struggle to perfect the filling
Crisco Pie & Baking Hotline
1-877-367-7438 8 a.m.–8 p.m. EST OR chat online, www.piehotline.com, up to the day before Thanksgiving, 8 a.m.–7 p.m. EST.
For your December baking questions, the Crisco Telephone Hotline will operate Monday, December 14 to Wednesday, December 23, 8 a.m.–7 p.m. EST. You can also contact live experts online, www.piehotline.com, from Monday, December 14 to Wednesday, December 23, 8 a.m.–8 p.m. EST.
For more help and baking inspiration, join the Crisco community on Facebook and Pinterest.
Fleischmann’s Yeast Baker’s Help Line
For any yeast baking questions or problems, call 1-800-777-4959 year round, Mon-Fri 9 a.m.-4 p.m. CST (except major holidays).
There are countless cooking advice websites, but one of my tried and true is Martha Stewart’s. You KNOW her recipes will work (heads would roll if they didn’t!) and you can find anything from spatchcocking a turkey to making gravy.
Actually the best gravy instructions I’ve ever found are from The Food Network with their Perfect Gravy recipe. They give a clear account of how to put it all together and their fat/flour/stock ratio is the same one I’ve used for years! (Although I substitute 1 cup of white wine for every cup of stock and use that to deglaze the roasting pan.)
Now all that’s left is to do the actual cooking and enjoy your family and friends. Happy Thanksgiving!