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In the kitchen: Thanksgiving 101

In the kitchen: Thanksgiving 101
Adam Perry Lang cooks a Thanksgiving feast. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Thanksgiving is tomorrow. Are you prepared? Some of us plot our holiday meals weeks in advance, readying ourselves with production schedules, diagrams and seating charts, along with preparing for any and all potential conversation (If you're dreading a post-election Thanksgiving, here are some survival tips). Others of us have yet to buy a turkey. (Here are some handy suggestions for where to eat out.)

Regardless of where you fall in the spectrum, we're here to help. If you're new to cooking a turkey, or just roast one once a year and could use a refresher, we have tips. If you're looking for inspiration, we caught up with chef Adam Perry Lang, who shared recipes for many of the dishes he'll be serving at his table tomorrow. We have pie tips galore (including how-to videos), and have compiled some of our favorite Thanksgiving recipes, from turkey to stuffing to vegetables, gravy and more, including dessert. And, no, we didn't forget the cranberries.

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A BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO COOKING TURKEY

There's nothing like the pressure of cooking a Thanksgiving turkey. You've got a bird, and it's big, and there's one shot to get it right. Even those of us who cook professionally feel the pressure when it comes to cooking the turkey, and doing a good job. Here's a quick how-to for tackling the big bird tomorrow, from start to finish.

Thanksgiving turkey.
Thanksgiving turkey. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

CHEF ADAM PERRY LANG DOES THANKSGIVING

While you might first recognize him from the set of "Jimmy Kimmel Live," perfuming the backlot with a haze of barbecue smoke, French-trained chef Adam Perry Lang has a decades-long relationship with food, ranging from Michelin-starred restaurants to barbecue pits. Food editor Amy Scattergood caught up with Perry and his family (he met his wife while working in Paris, and the couple have two children) to see how they plan to celebrate Thanksgiving, and gather some recipes. (Hint: None involve a barbecue.)

Friends and family gather for chef Adam Perry Lang's Thanksgiving feast.
Friends and family gather for chef Adam Perry Lang's Thanksgiving feast. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

HOW TO MAKE A PUMPKIN PIE, AND MORE PIE TIPS

Click on the video below for a quick demonstration in how to make this recipe for classic pumpkin pie. And check our our ultimate pie guide for recipes, tips and tricks for everything from perfect crust to the best whipped cream.

BRUSSELS SPROUTS ARE IN SEASON. WE HAVE RECIPES

Brussels sprouts are a staple at many a Thanksgiving table. Known for their complex flavor, these little members of the cabbage family benefit from quick cooking to bring out their gentle, sweet notes. Roast, steam or glaze the vegetables for a simple side, or blanch the leaves to use in salads. You can even deep-fry them. We share some of our favorite recipes.

Cleo's Brussels sprout
Cleo's Brussels sprout (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)

TRY THIS ROASTED GARLIC SMASHED POTATOES RECIPE

The Thanksgiving table isn't complete without the mashed potatoes. More than a vehicle for gravy, a great bowl of spuds is an art unto itself, comfort food at its best. Amp up your mashed potato game this year with this roasted garlic smashed potato recipe. And for more mashed potato tips and tricks, check out this video.

Roasted garlic smashed potatoes.
Roasted garlic smashed potatoes. (Los Angeles Times)

Vote for your favorite cookie: You can now cast your vote in our sixth Los Angeles Times Holiday Cookie Bake-Off. Vote now to help determine the top 20 recipes. We'll judge those and print our top 5 in our Saturday Section on Dec. 17.

Love cooking as much as I do? Follow me @noellecarter

Check us out on Instagram @latimesfood

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Check out the thousands of recipes in our Recipe Database

Feedback? We'd love to hear from you. Email us at food@latimes.com.

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