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4 Last-Minute Dinner Fixes That Mix MacGyver with Mario Batali

Thanksgiving is just a day away, but there’s still a chance that the worst-case scenario will hit. The stores have closed, you’re set to start cooking, and then you discover a turkey baster, Microplane, or some other essential is missing.

The Daily Meal, which houses all things food and drinks, comes to the rescue with its Emergency Thanksgiving Toolbox. Don’t fret if you lack a potato masher or lemon zester. The Daily meal’s savvy team has channeled both Mario Batali and MacGyver to serve up some makeshift, meal-saving tools you can find around your house. A few of these smart solutions include:

  • No Gravy Separator a Watering Can: The mechanics behind a gravy separator allow the turkey juices to be separated from the fat—which accumulates at the top of the container—so that you can pour the juice through the spout at the base of the container. A small watering can do the same thing because of the positioning of the spout. If your watering can’s spout starts near the middle of the container, cover the top with plastic wrap and duct tape and then invert the can.
  • No Peeler à Single Blade Razor: If you find yourself without a peeler on Thanksgiving Day, head to your bathroom cabinet. A single-blade razor (unused, disposable ones preferred) will work wonders as a makeshift peeler. A paring knife or new pumice stone will also do the trick for thinner-skinned vegetables like potatoes or carrots.
  • No Roasting Rack à Cake Pan: In place of a roasting rack, fashion a cake pan upside down (the shallower it is, the better) at the bottom of your roasting pan and place the turkey on top. This will keep the turkey elevated, so the bottom stays golden and crispy. Just be extra cautious when placing the turkey in the oven.
  • No Pastry Brush à Unused Toothbrush: A pastry brush can coat uncooked crusts and pastries with butter before baking. However, you can also use an unused toothbrush or paper towel instead to achieve the same results.
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