Funny family story about a ruined turkey.

Don’t Burn It

A favorite holiday story that I have heard a friend tell happened at Thanksgiving, while it may have happened at Christmastime. Every spring Linda’s uncle, who was thought of as rich, purchased a box of turkey babies. He split the chicks with Linda’s father and whoever brought up the largest turkey supplied the Thanksgiving feast, the following biggest was Christmas dinner. One year Linda’s family brought up the biggest turkey. He weighed forty-two pounds and was so big they feared he wouldn’t go in the oven. The family tradition was to spend each Thanksgiving Day with either Uncle Joe or Auntie Margaret and their families.

They lived roughly an equal distance from our home and both places were rather boring to youngsters. The sole bright spot in going to see either one was that they got to stop and have burgers for breakfast on the way. The year of the behemoth turkey was Aunt Margaret’s home. She was an atrocious cook and her Dad worried about his turkey until her mother said she would fix it at home and Margaret could simply heat it up. The day worked out to be better than they guessed, Aunt Margaret’s 3 grandsons were there and they were all having a fantastic time.

An hour before dinner Linda’s mother helped Auntie Margaret get the gigantic turkey into her oven and left her to warm it up. In approximately 15 minutes somebody noticed smoke descending from the kitchen. Everyone rushed in and Linda’s Mom yanked the oven door open. The beautiful turkey was on fire. Aunt Margaret had switched on the broiler, not the oven; thereby satisfying her fathers prediction that she would wreck the turkey. Thank goodness, he was

able to save the day by ingenious slicing and they had a Thanksgiving to remember.

Thanksgiving Turkey


1 (12 ounce) package dry bread stuffing mix 5 cups water
1 large onion, chopped
4 celery, chopped

4 tablespoons dried sage
12 pounds whole turkey, neck and giblets removed


1. Prepare stuffing according to package directions, and set aside in a large bowl. 2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
3. Bring water to boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat, and stir in the onion, celery and sage. Boil 10 minutes, or until the onion is soft. Stir into the prepared stuffing.

4. Rinse turkey, and pat dry. Loosely fill the body and neck cavities with the stuffing mixture.
5. Place turkey in a large roasting pan and cook 3 to 3 1/2 hours in the preheated oven, or until the internal temperature of the thigh meat is 180 degrees F (80 degrees C) and the stuffing is at least 165 degrees F (75 degrees C).

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