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Thanksgiving Disasters: Redeemable or Memorable?


Do you remember the Thanksgiving episode on Friends where the gang runs into Monica's apartment to smoke and ruined food? Monica screams, "Well, the turkey's burnt. The potatoes are ruined, potatoes are ruined, potatoes are ruined." Ross comes strolling in and comments, "This doesn't smell like Moms."..

If we are truly honest, Thanksgiving meal disaster happen every single year. Sometimes the cook deftly covers up the mistake and no one knows the difference. Other times, well, the turkey is burnt and the potatoes are ruined. 

Have you had a Thanksgiving blunder that was unredeemable? Or have you been able to smoothly transition that mistake into something wonderful and edible that no one notices?

Usually, I can maneuver the second- if caught in time. I love to cook and bake, but I fully admit: I'm not a professional. Mistakes happen. Recipes don't turn out the way one expects. The oven temp. doesn't regulate well. The timer isn't heard over the roar of that touchdown that captivates everyone in the room. 

Unfortunately, one year's Thanksgiving Pecan Pie was just not edible, redeemable, or even fit for the dogs of the house. 

Several years ago, I was in Florida visiting close friends including their two  (at the time) teenage sons. Adopted as "Aunt Susan", the Bryant Brothers and I have had many baking adventures in the past 12 years we have known each other.  Brownies, cakes, breads, and even meals like chicken.. it's all been entertaining! 

One particular Thanksgiving, we were hard at work prepping for the late Thursday meal. The conversation had focused on pies. I didn't grow up with homemade pies at the holidays, but especially not pecan. After receiving a recipe from the head of the house and being told to get to work, we attempted a pecan pie. 

Mind you, I've never made a pecan pie. Didn't grow up with them, didn't have a clue how to make one. Well, I quickly learned that when dealing with an overzealous teen, one needs to be accurate in descriptions. 

Pecan pies should be pretty simple: the mixture of corn syrup, eggs, sugar, butter, salt.. and the pecans go in last. Well, trying to figure out the right mixture for the right sized pan when the recipe is the one from grandmamma's time and doesn't have accurate measurements can be very.. entertaining! 

Most of us know that a pinch is literally a pinch. Many of us know how to measure liquids rather well. Well, unfortunately this particular pie ended up too salty, too liquidly, and never set well. 

Have you ever tried to eat a too-salty soupy pie? Too much salt and too much liquid made this pie unredeemable. So we scratched that batch and started over, yielding a semi-decent edible pie!

Unredeemable foods are frustrating, particularly when on time-crunches, but definitely create memories! To this day, we still joke about salty soupy pecan pies whenever the topic of Thanksgiving comes up in conversation! 

 Have you had Thanksgiving Day blunders? Were they fixable or did that item end up in the trash bin?

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