The Five Worst Thanksgiving Dishes

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More architectural element than food, jellied cranberry sauce from a can has long been an immutable fixture of the Thanksgiving table.


There is no worse holiday for the true foodie than Thanksgiving. Cooking it is like being trapped in a crashing rocket ship, with a joystick that doesn't respond. Try to change the menu one iota, and all you get are sour looks. Everyone wants the same knee-jerk menu year after year after year. Yet we eat it and like it. Here are the five worst dishes associated with the holiday that we hate the most.


5. Jellied Cranberry Sauce -- You know, the kind that's always decanted from the can with the can lines still visible, as proof that it actually came from the can and it wasn't you just doing mutant experiments with Jell-O. Cranberry sauce is way too sweet, and should be presented with the dessert course, if at all.


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4. Stuffing That's Never Been Inside the Bird -- If you're not a favorite guest at the Thanksgiving table, the host or hostess may try to serve you stuffing from a baking dish that has never been inside the juicy, greasy, and salty cavity of the bird, and thus is devoid of the true flavor of Thanksgiving.


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3. Creamed Corn -- Either canned or "fresh," creamed corn ought to be the punchline of a traveling-salesman joke sooner than being cradled in a flowered dish at the holiday table. And what is that whitish fluid surrounding the kernels, anyway?


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2. Tofurky -- Looking more like the suppurating testicle of a rhinoceros than an actual turkey, Tofurky is getting increasingly difficult to dodge these days, and it's been on more than one occasion that we've witnessed the horror of Tofurky baking next to Tom Turkey in the very same oven.


What could be worse than Tofurky? Turn the page if you dare.


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35 comments
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O. Lallieberry
O. Lallieberry

Totally accurate article. Having grown up in white trash welfare squalor, all of these dishes could be found on our table in any given year, with the exception of Tofurkey (which didn't yet exist). However, I experienced Tofurkey while dining with new-ager pals one X-Giving in the '80s.

PS: Canned cranberry sauce is funny looking, but it is the only thing listed that has a noticeable flavor.

brian
brian

You would really rather have green bean casserole?

Oh!  With French's Onions!

guest
guest

I have to say this is the most pretentious nonsense I have ever read. It is Thanksgiving; granted the Food Network has turned it into an entire season of cooking, but the reality is, the staples are what taste like home, your family, your memories. I'm a professional chef, and sure, if people want it I will make chipotle cranberry sauce and fig stuffed turkey, but for my family it is green bean cassarole, ocean spray cranberry jelly and plain old stuffing (inside and outside the bird). Bad day for a foodie? Hardly, a day of simpler memories, simpler food, and nice times.

Drlnclark29
Drlnclark29

It is safer to make the stuffing outside the turkey and I love stove top stuffing mix and I love creamed corn and the sweet potatoes.   I have made home made stuffing and the texture is terrible.   Yuck....... I haven't been spoiled with home made everything.   Try spending all day in the kitchen and then tell me it's worth it.  BULL......

Roguedawg
Roguedawg

lolol the first leftover thing i will raid the fridge for tonight is that very cranberry sauce.  I know it's wrong, but i love it so much

musicalchef
musicalchef

I've never had tofurky, so I can't comment on that, but I agree with the others!  We usually made cranberry relish, with real cranberries and orange zest.  And just regular corn - all corn needs is a bit of salt, pepper, and butter!

Luckie22002
Luckie22002

I don't mind the cranberry sauce, or the candied yams, or the stuffing that's never been in the turkey, but the tofurky and the creamed corn I can totally do without!

Micaela
Micaela

I hate both turkey and stuffing. My favorite dish is the homemade cranberry sauce that my mother makes

canary
canary

Heartily agree with all except the stuffing.  It does taste better birded but the idea is pretty gross.  I can't agree more with the others though--they are all just WRONG.

Lovetb825
Lovetb825

This article is bullshit..."There is no worse holiday for the true foodie than Thanksgiving." Speak for yourself. If I was on deathrow, Thanksgiving food would be my last request

Peter_from_NYC
Peter_from_NYC

I like, nay prefer, jellied cranberry sauce on freshly cooked turkey sandwiches.  And it is indispensible for me for eating with stuffing, turkey and gravy.  I can't even imagine why it is gross -- but it is hard to get out of the can. 

One of my "taste sensation highs" was eating a toasted rye bread sandwich with mayonaisse, both dark and white freshly cooked turkey and jellied cranberry sauce, washed down with lemonade, when I worked in Newark NJ in the 1980's.  And they serve it also at "Joe Junior's diner" on 3rd Ave and 15th-16th St, NYC.

Peter_from_NYC
Peter_from_NYC

I have 3 comments:

1) the version on YouTube isbetter:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

2) It is a slap at women,but sometimes they deserve it.

3) Michele Bachmann'santi-gay, conservative demagoguery is sorepellant, it is refreshing to find out the hidden meaning in the song, which Inever heard of, and which clearly Michelle did not know about.  If you read the lyrics of the song, though,it means that the guy was disappointed in love by his lover’s bad faith, andlies.  And he has a point, whether or notit’s applicable to Ms. Bachmann.  

Godotnut
Godotnut

These are judicious choices. I hate all of these things.

Talia
Talia

I've never had tofurky, so I can't comment on that, but I disagree with all of this except for the creamed corn and cranberry sauce. I think anything that comes straight out of a can and is either put straight on a plate or just warmed up and served is pretty lame for Thanksgiving, and canned cranberry sauce just sickens me for some reason. Maybe becomes it comes out looking like a can.

Candied yams with marshmallows is about the greatest thing you could serve at Thanksgiving, and is required among my family. The stuffing doesn't have to be in a bird to taste like Thanksgiving.

Guest
Guest

Aside from the stuffing, which I far prefer cooked outside the turkey, as that cooked inside has the texture of what I presume to be cat vomit, this article is correct.

I have belatedly come to discover that I in fact hate almost all "traditional" Thanksgiving food recently, and also that there's no way out. It's horrible. Anything remotely good my aunts tend to ruin, so I'm stuck with a plate of dry turkey, weak gravy, and over-peppered mashed potatoes. Then they ask why I'm not eating enough. How do you even politely tell a person their cooking is atrocious and on top of that the food was disgusting to begin with?

Laura
Laura

This article is invalid because green bean casserole is not on the list.

Angie Antimatter
Angie Antimatter

Candied yams with marshmallows is my favourite part of Thanksgiving !

Hayley
Hayley

this is possibly the worst article ever.a lot of people eat stuffing not inside a turkey...

Theresa Stanton
Theresa Stanton

your article is valid only because you use the most awful pictures, except for the cranberry sauce. 

Fitzwilliam Smith
Fitzwilliam Smith

Hmmmmm I have never even tried that cranberry "sauce," but the rest of these dishes are favorites at my family's thanksgiving table. My mum cooks us a vegetarian meal every year and I have to say even though the menu hasn't changed a bit, we only eat these foods once a year anyway so they still have their charm every time Thanksgiving comes around. Although at our table creamed corn is replaced with my mum's corn casserole, and there's no tofurky or stuffing; we have lentil veggie loaf instead. Mum makes it from scratch with her own recipe. P:

Kevin
Kevin

I'd argue that's a pretty awful picture of a Tofurkey, mine have never looked like that...  

Jamie
Jamie

You'd REALLY hate my Thanksgiving spread. It's going to be all vegan, and all delicious. I'm roasting freshly made seitan in lieu of tofukey. Gobble gobble!

Baisouzen
Baisouzen

Well, by the sound of it you're a huge jerk already so I'm pretty sure they'll understand if you tell them that their food sucks lol.

Rsietsema
Rsietsema

Love vegan food -- especially south Indian. It's the overprocessed, trying-to-look-like meat version I object to, Jamie.

brian
brian

I hope you can live with yourself after you killed all those vegetables.

MURDERERS!

Jason Nehal
Jason Nehal

I totally agree; I have never understood the logic of creating "meat" lookalike substitutes for people who object to eating meat, and I always think it's sort of the mildest form of hypocrisy that a vegan would eat them. If you don't like meat, why eat a meat substitute?  Vegetable protein sources abound....

Jamie
Jamie

Clarification: You'd hate it because it includes several of the things seen here, only veganized, hence adding an extra layer of culinary wrongness. (Plus a ton of other Tday classics.) I love south Indian too, but not on Thanksgiving. There's a reason people don't like to change this menu up, and it's because it's one of the only days each year when it's socially acceptable to pig out on comfort food. How can anyone hate on comfort food?!

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