Mashed potatoes are as American as apple pie and fried chicken. Like those other staples of home cooking, mashed potatoes can be tricky to master. What you need to remember is to not overcook, not overmash—and choose the right potatoes. The best potatoes for beginners to mash are “dry” potatoes usually used for baking, like Idaho potatoes.
Since stuffing rarely appears separate from Thanksgiving, it’s an inherently nostalgic and meaningful dish. I bake my stuffing on a sheet pan so the crispy-to-soft ratio is basically one to one.
This is my go-to recipe for turkey breast that is the opposite of dry and boring and also cooks so quickly, which is the antithesis of most Thanksgiving turkey.
These crispy scallion pancakes have all of the traditional appeal of their restaurant namesakes, with more flavor and texture thanks to sesame oil and sesame seeds and less greasiness than what is often served in Americanized Chinese restaurants.
Nobody cares that the Thanksgiving turkey is dry and the mashed potatoes are lumpy when you’ve got a gravy this rich and nuanced to pour over them.