Hey, whoa, Thanksgiving is here! And although you likely will spend it huddled over a vending-machine candy bar in a snowed-in airport terminal surrounded by wild-eyed and feral-looking strangers, that shouldn't stop you from fantasizing about the delicious non-candy foods you'd be eating if our nation's Eastern Seaboard had not just today transformed into frozen hell. Below you'll find all of our Thanksgiving-y Foodspins, presented for your airport-bathroom-stall smartphone-reading enjoyment.
For the rest of you who will be celebrating Thanksgiving with your loved ones in cozy homes, below you'll find all of our Thanksgiving-y Foodspins, presented so that you may frantically choose one to cook because Oh god I totally forgot that these are potluck deals now that I'm a grownup.
First up is our guide to making half-assed Thanksgiving side dishes. We cover three of 'em, each of which is juuuust good enough to justify your presence at the table, but none of which are fancy enough to get you saddled with any real cooking responsibility next year.
Or, maybe you got assigned the mashed potatoes, this year. Don't worry, this is still a shamefully easy task. We've got you covered.
Feeling a little ambitious? I little iconoclastic? Show up to Aunt Mavis's Thanksgiving feast with potatoes au gratin instead of mashed potatoes, and make everybody's socks go curling up and down their legs. WARNING: This course of action may result in you getting tasked with the turkey next year, which is a fucking nightmare.
Or you could just make mac and cheese. Mac and cheese is good, and this mac and cheese is better than most.
Mashed cauliflower is deceptively easy, ludicrously tasty, and you might be able to trick some of your relatives into thinking it's more healthful than potatoes. This will earn you plaudits and goodwill for your good sense, which you can redeem for an extra five drinks.
Another (nonfictionally) healthful and yummy side is fried Brussels sprouts. The kids' table will make yuck-faces at these, which will only be awkward if you're sitting at it.
Ha ha, let's not even pretend that anyone is trusting you with the deviled eggs. Still, here is how you could make them, if they'd let you.
You can combat the seasonal infatuation with pumpkin flavors by making some delicious apple crumble for dessert. It's autumn-y and sweet and wonderful, and it's deadly with vanilla ice cream.
On the other hand, maybe your flight/bus/train/steamship/trebuchet got canceled, and with it your Thanksgiving plans, and now you're stuck in a lonely apartment with your regular-ass groceries and staring down the barrel of a Thanksgiving without Thanksgiving. Here's how to whip up an emergency last-minute "Thanksgiving" "feast" for human dumpster fires. It'll be sad as hell! Sad, but nourishing.
So you made whatever you made and now it's time to eat. Simple, right? Pile some food on a plate and shovel it into your mouth, right? Wrong! That's amateurish bullshit. Eating Thanksgiving dinner is a serious undertaking, and that is why we made a strategy guide to eating Thanksgiving dinner.
And, finally, here is what to do with your leftovers.
Happy reading, and happy cooking, and happy Thanksgiving.
Top image by Jim Cooke.