Michael Symon, co-host of The Chew, and Cleveland-based chef, will be making quite a lot of gourmet holiday dishes for his family this Thanksgiving, like bourbon maple butter-basted turketta (turkey flavored and cooked like a pork loin) stuffed with sausage and apples; stuffed squash; and shaved Brussels sprouts salad. But the one thing that you’ll never find on his holiday table? Green bean casserole. Although green bean casserole is usually considered a staple of Thanksgiving Americana, Symon just doesn’t get the appeal.
“I can’t stand that casserole,” chef Symon said in an interview with The Daily Meal. “The canned soup topped with fried onions really bums me out.”
But there will still be plenty of side dishes at the Symon household this Turkey Day, including two stuffings, one made with wild rice for his vegetarian wife and son, and the other made with bacon, sausage, and walnuts. He will also be serving collard greens with ham hock and brown butter mashed potatoes, as well as his absolute favorite Thanksgiving dish: sweet potato pie.
As for making mistakes in the kitchen, this Iron Chef isn’t too worried about Thursday, since he’s been working as a professional chef for years. But decades ago, when he was just starting out in the culinary world, he was invited to make the Thanksgiving turkey for dinner at his grandfather's house.
“I was working at a restaurant at the time, so I prepped it there and went back to my grandfather’s house,” he said. “But my turkey wouldn’t fit in his oven! So I had to run back to the restaurant to cook it, and then come back. I missed hors-d'oeuvres!”
Turkey pro-tip: Make sure your bird isn’t too big for your oven…we’re looking at you, urban apartment-dwellers with pint-sized kitchens.