Online Thanksgiving Adventures With “Bon Appetit”

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All Images: Sarah Pinault

My husband and my seven year old have a comfortable routine that they dip in and out of. In the wee small hours of the morning, they snuggle up on our couch, before the rest of the house is awake, and watch videos on the iPhone. For the longest time it was Good Mythical Morning; these days it’s cooking shows. Specifically, the Thanksgiving cooking shows put out by Bon Appetit magazine, across their varied line of video series.

Bon Appetit has raised the game for online magazine content. They have wide array of “channels” ranging from two minute videos on the basics, to the most complicated, to recreating popular dishes from taste only Not all of their series have been successful—some have a handful of videos I used to haphazardly purchase the magazine—but my husband has become an absolute addict to their Test Kitchen videos. Most particularly he has been working his way through snack foods with Claire Saffitz, in which she re-creates, from scratch, every day snacks. Sour Patch Kids from scratch. Ferrero Rocher from scratch. Oreos from scratch. It is a highly technical process and the science part of food science really gets a workout. They are also highly entertaining and have become an integral part of the Bon Appetit personality, and of my household.

This being the biggest food season of the year, of course they were going to go all out. To coincide with the publication of the Thanksgiving edition of the magazine, they started putting out Thanksgiving-themed videos. Each member of the team got a different part of the Thanksgiving meal to tackle. I have often wondered how cooking magazines stay fresh year after year, when turkey is really all that is on the menu. Turns out, it’s a tricky but highly entertaining game. I do still buy the Thanksgiving magazines every year, so clearly there will always be an audience for it.

My seven year old prefers Brad and Christina, my husband likes the whole bunch, I’m partial to Claire. After careful consideration, there are two things that my boys decided to try and make for themselves this year. The first was a turkey, prepared just like the video, broken down into five pieces and roasted on a wire rack. However, after a disappointing trip to Whole Foods, where the butcher lamented their corporate buy out, and several strike outs at local butchers, they decided to skip the main course. They went straight for Andy and Brad’s cranberry sauce.

I’m a cranberry sauce junky. I will eat turkey sandwiches—with stuffing and cranberry sauce, of course—all year long. I will eat it from a can. I will eat it from a mold. I will eat it here and there. I will eat it everywhere. But even I have to admit that after trying Andy and Brad’s cranberry sauce, I have to go all Highlander this year, and say “there can be only one.” This is the most delicious cranberry sauce I have ever tasted. It’s one of the most delicious sides I have ever tasted. I had a scoop with some granola and Greek yogurt; it was delicious. I had some on a cracker; it was delicious. I sliced some off the side, straight from the fridge, and ate it from my knife; it was delicious. Don’t you judge me.

As the Pinault men continue to work their way through Thanksgiving with Bon Appetit, I can’t wait to see what they come up with. I hope that the magazine continues this tradition next year; it will be nice to add some more seasonal binging to our Friends and Bob’s Burgers lineup. If you’re looking for an entry point to these addicting videos, I highly recommend Kit Kats with Claire, or Ferrero Rocher with Claire.

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