A dry, overcooked bird is the main worry for Celeste Molina, who’s staying home with her partner and their roommates instead of spending it with family because of the pandemic. Molina, who works at a screen printing firm in Portland, Oregon, knows how badly first attempts can go; years ago, her aunt ended up burning the Thanksgiving bird.
“We got to her house and she’s like, ‘I’m just going to order you guys McDonald’s,'” she said.
Molina isn’t worried about her first turkey, but just in case, she and her partner plan to buy a chicken to roast alongside it.
Lori DeSanti, a real estate agent in Meriden, Connecticut, will also be making turkey with her husband for the first time, instead of going to her dad’s or relative’s home.
DeSanti isn’t that concerned about the turkey – she’s never been a huge fan – and is focusing on pulling off a stuffing recipe.
“That’s what I’m more worried about ruining,” she said.
Advance planning could be important for another reason this year: Making sure you can get the right size bird, since gatherings are expected to be smaller.
In suburban Detroit, Robyn Dwoskin plans to get a turkey breast instead of a whole bird for her first attempt at a Thanksgiving spread, since it will just be her husband, their daughters and her mom. She’s cooked turkey breasts in her slow cooker before, but hasn’t yet figured out what she’ll do for Thanksgiving.