These days, turducken and deep fried turkeys are old news. If you want to do something a little different this year, there are still plenty of new ways to cook both your turkey and those classic Thanksgiving sides everyone has become accustomed to. Here are a few fun ways to see your Turkey Day favorites in an all new light.
Set It On Fire
You don't have to set the world on fire -just your Thanksgiving turkey. While this Thai-inspired recipe is designed to help you cook a chicken, the process could easily be adapted for prepping a turkey. Taking only 15 minutes to cook a chicken, this great method can finish your bird in no time -and it's sure to impress your guests.
If you've ever had a pig roasted in a traditional luau manner, you know that pit cooking yeilds an incredibly moist, tender and flavorful result. So why not use that method on your Thanksgiving bird? This article has all the details you need to do it yourself and the neccessary materials are pretty basic.
Fans of smoked meat are always eager to enjoy that succulent flavor with any meat. It works particularly well on turkey and you can even make a great bacon-wrapped bird this way. Don't have a smoker? This Instructable can teach you how to make one with a metal garbage can.
When it comes to the world of BBQ, there is always a debate between smokers and grillers. If you lean on the grilling side of the argument, here's how to grill up your turkey for a special barbeque treat. You can even grill up some sides for a full Thanksgiving dinner on the barbie.
Make It Evil
Some like it hot and for those people, this evil turkey is a delightful way to enjoy Thanksgiving. This crazy recipe calls for chipotle, red peppers and whiskey, making it sinfully delicious. For a truly evil experience, try using the same preparation method, but cooking it over flames using the grilling advice above.
As the writer in this article explains, most turkey jerky tries to replicate the taste of beef, but minimal seasoning can help keep the flavor of the fowl intact -and even makes it taste perfect for Thanksgiving.
Sure it might not look as pretty as a roasted turkey, but if you've ever cooked a chicken in the Crockpot then you know what the result lacks in beauty is more than made up for with rich flavor. If you plan to cook your bird in the Crockpot, be sure to get one that fits in your crock (this blogger suggests only buying on under 9.5 pounds) or you might have to make a last minute adjustment to your plan.
Stuff It With Other Birds
Turkey, duck and chicken has been done. If you want to try something really different, grab more birds. This outrageous concoction features goose, duck, mallard, guinea fowl, chicken, pheasant, partridge, pigeon and woodcock. While something this outrageous is best left to professionals, it even takes the experts 125 hours to prepare and eight hours to roast.
Turn It Into A Cake
We're not talking about dessert here, but your entire Thanksgiving dinner. This crazy recipe combines ground turkey, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce and mini marshmallows, making a cake concoction that will surprise and shock your guests.
Stuff Something Else
Cooking your turkey with stuffing inside can make it take way longer and can leave dangerous bacteria alive. Instead, cook your turkey in one of the other fun ways listed in this article and put your stuffing inside something else. While this recipe calls for a stuffed squash and corn bread dressing, you can use any vegetable big enough with any stuffing with a complimentary flavor -get creative.
Serve Them Raw
We've all had Brussels sprouts at Thanksgiving, but we've never had them uncooked. This recipe turns your Brussels sprouts into a fresh, healthy salad. It will be a welcome change from the traditional roasted sprouts everyone is accustomed to.
Combine The Classics
Have a few favorite Thanksgiving tastes? You can always try combining the tasty treats like these cranberry-glazed sweet potatoes that would make an ultimate side for any turkey dinner.
Pumpkin pie is great, but it's easy to eat too much food at dinner, leaving no room for dessert. As the classic tagline reminds us though, there's always room for Jell-O and here's a way to switch out your traditional pumpkin pie for tasty gelatin treats.
There are plenty of places where the weather is still quite warm during Thanksgiving. Eating pie (and even worse, baking it) can be a nightmare in hot weather, so if you don't experience crisp autumn air like our pilgrim forefathers did so long ago, then try making your pie a little cooler -as ice cream.
Alternatively, this apple cider pie contains all those classic flavors of all-American apple pie, but in a cold pie that more closely resembles coconut cream or lemon meringue than the autumn pastry we're used to.
Apple pie is wonderful but if you prefer a your sweets with a little booze in them, try making Apfel wine, a traditional apple wine that can be prepared in only 30 minutes.
Tired of sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top? Maybe you'd prefer to try it as a shot. This cool cocktail combines sweet potatoes, schnapps, whiskey, nutmeg and a toasted marshmallow garnish, incorporating the flavors of the classic casserole in an all new way.
Once you've decided on dinner, don't miss this great article featuring ten perfect Thanksgiving centerpieces you can make in no time.