Dear mothers who took offense to my last letter header, anyone shoveling out of Buffalo NY, and Michael Jackson’s children:
I spent all last winter walking home alone from the mall bus stop during snow storms and frigid winds alike to know that according to my nipples, it is officially winter.
Don’t let the weather get you in a bind. I know you’re all looking forward to reuniting with family for the holidays, unless you still live at home. And if you do still live at home…good on ya! My mortgage payments and grocery bills weep for your ability to sock away funds for whatever harmonic and melodious things may come your way this holiday season.
My friends and family are getting an autographed photo of me wearing leggings for the holidays.
That’s what happens when you’re on a budget.
But the holidays aren’t all doom and gloom, and neither should your outlook on them be!
Think of all the wonderful things you’ll get Christmas morning. Or for 8 days if you are of the Chanukah persuasion. And I’m not sure how Kwanza works (*remember to check Wikipedia later*), and if you worship that weird moon holiday that is non demographic or whatever, then congrats on breathing and avoiding all things fun!
But in between the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping at your work desk on your handy dandy iPhones that are probably still covered under a family plan, unless you’re unbelievably well off in which case congrats on marrying a doctor early in life, there must be made time for something special.
Seasonal depression is a serious issue and I’ve come up with some solutions to combating the darkness this holiday season.
I give you, the ‘Most Things Are Garbage’ holiday series:
Plenty of entries involving tips and tricks to fight the cold that is your heart this winter. Mainly because I need it too, and writers block is a bitch.
So to kick you off, just in time for Thanksgiving, an instructional guide to cooking a Thanksgiving Turkey!
Go Go Gadget Gobble!
Step 1: Grab a pen and paper. You need to document everything that we are doing here. Especially if it’s your first time like me! Draw pictures, take notes, record recipes, produce a tracing of a hammerhead shark. The bottom line is, you’ll want your original recipe for years to come!
After all, where do you think KFC would be if the Colonel hadn’t jotted down the secret recipe and blatant racism in his notepad?!
Gone. That’s where they’d be.
Step 2: Go buy a goddam turkey. This is a step I shouldn’t have to tell you. If you preheat your oven, and don’t have a turkey, and are confused as to why you can’t get this recipe correct, quit now.
I can’t save you. This blog can’t save you.
Martha Stewart can’t save you.
But, if you do this all in the correct order, head to your local Price Chopper, Hannoford, Piggly Wiggly, or Wegmans (unless you’re in Albany because we don’t deserve Wegmans or something, right Wegmans? You’re too good for Albany is that it Wegmans?) and roll your cart on back to the meat section.
Picking out the turkey you want is a delicate art in itself. First, count the number of people you’re cooking for. The higher the number, the bigger this bird needs to be.
For every three people you are cooking for, add ten pounds. For example, serving six? Get a sixteen pounder. Because you know all your greedy fucking friends are gonna say:
‘oh! Free thanksgiving!’
…and you’re gonna say:
‘oh! Where’s all my leftover turkey for my hot turkey sandwiches? Oh! My greedy fucking friends ate it all!’
So do yourself a favor and get more than you need.
Make sure the final selection is perfect. Punch it a few times to verify it built up its breast muscles out in the yard while it was being raised in captivity. It should be able to take a punch. Not like those weak ass organic turkeys raised on some farmers couch where he spoon fed it all the right grains and gave it baths and shit.
It’s no wonder organic costs so much when you consider all the unnecessary spa treatments the animal got before it ended up in your grocery store.
And finally, if you’re eating for one. Don’t buy a turkey. Get a can of chef Boyardee ravioli a or something. Save the birds for people who need them.
Or get a Cornish game hen.
Step 3: Buy all the ingredients you need to stuff, baste, marinate, fry, or whatever other unhealthy verbs you feel like doing to your bird.
I’ve compiled a list of ‘could do with’ products below:
Butter alternative spreads
Whatever you fucking feel like.
Step 4: Pay.
And I don’t mean ‘don’t steal’…
…I mean wait till you see how much this shit costs you…
…you’re gonna fucking pay.
Step 5: Thaw that bird.
Your friends aren’t coming until dinner tomorrow night, but you don’t wanna try cooking that turkey frozen. You need it to be able to bend with your every creative whim.
Because today you are Emeril Lagassii. You’re a food artist.
So bring that sucker to room temperature. And if when you wake up the next morning, you find that garbage is still frozen, run him under some hot water.
Because you don’t have time for that shit. You gotta get to prepping. After all, it’s 7:30 in the morning and you’re friends will be here in eleven hours so shits gotta get done and you haven’t even had your first cup of coffee.
Step 5: Prep your stuffing and rub.
Do you know what you’re stuffing your bird with yet?
Actual stuffing? Vegetables?
Whatever it is, you gotta use a knife. Unless you’re lazy as fuck in which case throw a whole onion up in that booty.
What’s a couple of full length carrots gonna hurt?
You’re not a savage! Don’t treat the bird like it betrayed you and ratted to the Chinese mob about the deal you made with Foo to hide the guns he was trafficking. Treat it like a human.
Dice that fricken onion. Slice those carrots. Give them a sensual rub down with some canola oil action.
As for the rub?
Throw some salt and pepper in a bowl. Then go to town adding other spices.
The more the merrier right?
Just remember to say ‘Bam’ every time you throw some in.
Paprika. Red Chili Flakes.
Ground Mustard. Chive.
McCormick Grill-Mates Sweet Asian Fusion Grill Rub.
Then take some of that rub, and mix it together with like, three cups of whatever butter or butter alternative you’re gonna use.
Look at you. Making an herbed butter, you saucy bitch.
Step 6: Prep your pan.
You gotta pan big enough for this bird? I sure hope so. If you don’t, stop cooking, you’re a failure, and just tell your friends you prepared an ahi turkey a la salmonella for everyone when they arrive.
If you do, congrats. Make sure it’s deep enough to hold a bed of veggies in a bath of juices and turkey sweat. This bird is gonna get hot.
Take all those vegetables you were dicing earlier and dice more, but bigger this time. Then sprinkle all those things on the bottom of the pan.
Then take your broth/stock/beer/apple juice/hot tub water and pour about an inch into the pan.
Look down at that shit.
Does it look good? Could you have done better?
Because you’re not me. That’s why you’re learning how to cook a turkey on my blog.
Because in some country, I’m probably a professional Chef.
Step 7: Preheat your oven.
Pay attention and watch your step kids. I’m about to drop knowledge.
You wanna cook a turkey at a slow heat.
So forget your moms lasagna recipe and ignore Nana’s patented meatloaf recipe, because this bird was meant to be cooked, not heat banged.
Not 324. Not 326.
If you try to change that temperature, I have already procured a team put together by myself and Neil Patrick Harris (or at least a homeless man who looks like him with a beard) who will break into your home and fuck up your turkey with a blow torch while you check on your newborns or finish up that episode of Sons of Anarchy you DVR’d this past week.
Which was crazy right? I can’t believe Jax found out about Gemma.
Step 8: Prep your turkey.
This part is most difficult in my opinion. It’s a lot of handsy stuff, and frankly it will leave you feeling super uncomfortable if you do it right.
First thing you need to do is avoid burning the wing tips. Because ew. Unless you’re one of those dicks that always asks for extra crispy with your wings. Yes that makes you a dick. And just so you know, all that means to a guy dropping your wings into a frylator is ‘forget about those wings for a while, this schmo doesn’t seem to care that his wings are going to be bones with hard crunchy fat on them by the time you’re done soaking them in grease for fifteen minutes.
Seriously. Just eat wings the way they’re supposed to be eaten.
Anyway, take those wing tips, and bend those bad boys up under your new found meaty friend. This will make his platform steady, and provide the illusion that he is laying on his back with his arms behind his head, ready for the beach and heat.
Hell, throw some shades on the b. Just don’t blame me when you eat some melted plastic.
Now, apologize to your bird in advance. Your about to vandalize it’s insides like a twelve year old who just got away with purchasing his first can of spray paint.
Now take both of the legs and pull em apart.
Yes. That’s right.
The booty is now available.
There’s some sort of thing that blocks the booty. It’s like half meaty and half boney. I’m not really sure what it is to be honest with you because I don’t care and it’s in the way.
So rip that thingy off and just scrap it for now.
Or mail it to Lady Gaga for her next meat dress at the Grammys.
There should be a bag of blood and guts inside your pal. Take that out. You don’t want to cook him with that in there.
You want him to feel empty inside.
Like when your ex told you that you were no longer sexually appealing.
Or that time your parents told you that Santa doesn’t exist.
Or that time you read on a blog that parents have to tell their kids that Santa doesn’t exist.
Now, take all that stuff you diced and prepared earlier, and shove it up your birds bootay.
This is like a veggie colonoscopy.
celery, apples, raisins, watermelon
gushers, froot by the foot, sno-caps, a loaf of challah
I don’t care just shove it in. Pack it in tight.
Congratulations. You can use this as a stuffing when your bird is done. You’re a fucking chef.
How does that feel?
Now! You need to tie your birds legs back together so nothing leaks out while he is relaxing in his rural tanning salon.
Use twine, or something sturdy like an extension cord so it doesn’t break.
Now find the opening to your rotund baby boys breasts. There should be a little bit of room to wiggle some fingers up under the skin layer like Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs. Wiggle more and more until you can freely slide your hand around in the gap that is now between your bird and its skin.
Do you feel good about yourself right now? Do you feel good with the lord?
If you did this right, you should feel like the lowlife scum that you truly are.
Now take a shovel from the garage and load it up with that gallon of herbed butter you prepared. Then shove that glob into the new layer of bird you just created with your bare hands you monster. Push it around with your hands until your bird looks normal again.
You disgust me.
Now take your spice rub and just all out slather that crap on top of your birds breasts. Just really rub it in. It’s crucial. It should look like you just dropped your turkey on the beach by the time your done.
If you need a visual, take your bird to a beach and drop it in the sand, then take it home to continue.
Now you have properly violated the animal you legally purchased at a known establishment.
Step 9: Cook.
If you’ve made it this far, I commend you for having no soul.
Take some tin foil and wrap it on top of your birds breasts. You don’t want it to get too tan while you’re slowly turning its skin to leather over the next six hours.
Rest your bird on its veggie towel you have created for it in the pan.
Now open the oven and slide it in.
The turkey I mean.
Step 10: Master Baste.
If you just read what I think you thought you did, your mind is in the gutter and you shouldn’t be cooking for people.
If you just did what you think you thought you read, you need to wash your hands before you proceed. And probably seek help.
Every half hour or so, stick that thing that looks like the ear cleaning sucker from when you were a little kid but bigger into your birds sweat which has piled up underneath him. Suck it up, and pour it back over top of him like you’re expecting it to soak back into its pores.
Step 11: Wait six hours and realize your bird has finished cooking three hours before people are set to arrive.
Step 12: Panic and yell at the person nearest by, dog, girlfriend, whatever. Blame it on them.
It’s really their fault anyway since all they did was whine and nag at you the whole time.
They’ll see. When you’re a big famous chef, they’ll be begging to be let back in from the cold.
Really, it’s like 15 degrees outside.
Step 13: Call your Dad and ask what to do.
He already thinks your less of a man because you wrote a blog about wearing women’s leggings for a day.
Or because you quit football.
Or any other sport that isn’t controlled by your hands and a gaming console.
Or because your eyebrow game is on point and you mentioned that to him.
Or because you had an allergy attack during The Fault in our Stars and you tried to tell everyone that it was probably the cats or the dust but you definitely weren’t crying but you could see how it would look like that.
Just don’t cry.
Step 14: Don’t cry.
Step 15: Cover that bitch in foil and cut the heat off. Wait till five minutes before everyone shows, turn the heat back on for ten minutes, pull out that piping hot bird and tell everyone how long you slaved, pretend you’re secure in your cooking abilities, and then make sure they drink heavily before dinner.
Worst case scenario, they’re too drunk to notice it tastes like dry pillow stuffing and you still walk away from this experience saying:
“Fuck you Bobby Flay, I’ll throw down with you anytime!”
Step 15: Victory Fist Pump.
Happy Holidays Y’all!
Super full but wondering why all my friends have food poisoning,