• Give a Gift
  • Customer Service
  • Promotions
  • Videos
  • Blogs
  • Win
  • Games

Top Chef's Stefan Richter's Thanksgiving Tips

Posted in:

Top Chef's Stefan Richter's Thanksgiving Tips

For some reason, Finnish Top Chef runner-up Stefan Richter is an expert on this uniquely American celebration. "The first thing you have to realize is that Thanksgiving is Thanksgiving; you can't change the classic foods," the notoriously blunt cook says. "The second thing is that it's not brain surgery." Here, Richter's straight-from-the-stove tips:

Keep the menu simple. "If you make 18 different items, you're going to serve a bunch of shit," he says. "Make five really well rather than 20 half-crappy ones."

Use fresh herbs. "The dried ones are no good. Buy fresh thyme, rosemary, and sage."

Zap the beans. To save time—and burner space—blanch the string beans a few days in advance; right before dinner, microwave them for four minutes, and you'll have "perfectly cooked beans. And no fried onions on top!"

Don't cook the bird all day. Instead of the typical 275 degrees for eight hours for a 12- to 16-pound turkey, which makes the bird "dry as shoe leather," says Richter, "cook it at 500 degrees for 30 minutes to get some nice color, and then bring it down to 350 for two-and-a-half hours. You'll have the perfect turkey."

Think cheap. "Find a wine for $3 a bottle, like Trader Joe's Two-Buck Chuck," says Richter. "I drink it—it's the runoff of a beautiful winery. You know what else I drink? Milwaukee's Best. It's 30 cents a can. I never buy European stuff."
Connect with Marie Claire:
daily giveaway
Unlimited Brunch!

Unlimited Brunch!

enter now
You Know You Want More
Special Offer
Link Your Marie Claire Account to Facebook

Marie Claire already has an account with this email address. Link your account to use Facebook to sign in to Marie Claire. To insure we protect your account, please fill in your password below.

Forgot Password?

Thanks for Joining

Your information has been saved and an account has been created for you giving you full access to everything marieclaire.com and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your username and/or password or complete your profile, click here.

Your accounts are now linked

You now have full access to everything Marie Claire and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your settings or profile, click here.