Make us your home page
Instagram

Cooking turkey dinner, with a little help from an app

Thanksgiving is a time to spend wholesome moments with family and enjoy great food and drink. It's also a time to panic about getting that complex menu cooked on time or forgetting something crucial at the grocery store.

Thank goodness there are apps to help with all of this.

Thanksgiving: A Bon Appétit Manual is a beautiful and useful app. Its calm, clean graphics may make you feel calm yourself as you juggle gravy, dessert, drinks and more. It is full of both individual recipes and complete menus, each with straightforward text instructions and illustrated with great photos.

It will even build a menu time schedule for you, letting you know which dish to prepare at what time so that everything is ready when you need it. Guidelines include which utensils you'll need, and if you feel in need of a drink after all the stress of cooking, there's even a guide to cocktails.

I wish it had a way to auto-generate shopping lists for you based on your food choices. And while the menu system is pretty slick, it may involve a few too many taps to suit gravy-spattered fingers in the kitchen. It is free, though.

Simpler, but with the added option to build shopping lists, is Thanksgiving Menu Maker. It has a fairly basic interface but nevertheless offers useful cooking guidelines with about 75 recipes. Though it's more straightforward than Bon Appétit's app, it still has handy extras like hints and tips videos, plus ideas on what to do with the leftovers. It has annoying advertising for Fine Cooking magazine, but it's free.

The free app Thanksgiving Recipes and Jokes delivers recipe ideas in a lighthearted style, though the "jokes" seem few and far between. It also has a cute, if slightly strange, decoration and presentation gallery to give you ideas for your table. There's not much in the way of advanced scheduling to help you cook a whole meal, however.

One big task for Thanksgiving chefs is keeping track of which pan is on which burner at which heat level — and there are a couple of apps that can do this for you. On iOS I think the best is Kitchen Pad Timer. It costs $2 and includes a center burner option if you have five in your kitchen. Its interface is clear and usable.

A slightly kookier and more playful option is the Dirty Kitchen Timer, $2 on Android or $3 for iPads. It offers five timers, and it's more fun.

Cooking turkey dinner, with a little help from an app 11/22/13 [Last modified: Sunday, November 24, 2013 8:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, New York Times.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Study: Tampa Bay a top market for homebuyers on the move

    Real Estate

    The Tampa Bay area is among the top markets for homebuyers who are likely to move in the next few months, ATTOM Data Solutions says.

    The Tampa Bay area is among the top markets for homebuyers who are likely to move in the next few months, a survey found.
[Associated Press file photo]
  2. Ousted to political Siberia by Corcoran, Kathleen Peters sets sights on Pinellas Commission

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — The perks of power in Tallahassee are a coveted chairmanship, a Capitol office in a prime location and a prominent seat on the House floor. Now Rep. Kathleen Peters has lost all three, but here's the twist: Her trip to "Siberia" might actually help her reach the next step on the Tampa Bay political …

    Rep. Kathleen Peters, R-South Pasadena, has been relegated to the back row in the State House chamber, moved to a fouth floor office and stripped of her job as chairwoman of a House subcommittee after a series of disagreements with House Speaker Richard Corcoran. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]
  3. UPS relocates express operations from St. Pete-Clearwater to TIA

    Airlines

    TAMPA — United Parcel Service Inc. is switching airports for its express air operations. Beginning in October, UPS will relocate from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport to Tampa International Airport.

    Beginning in October, UPS will move from St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport to Tampa International Airport. [Associated Press file photo]

  4. Richard Corcoran takes aim at public financing of campaigns

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O'Lakes, may not be running for governor — not yet anyway — but his latest idea will get the attention of those who are.

    House Speaker Richard Corcoran wants the Constitu?tion Revision Commis?sion to ask voters to repeal the state’s system of partial financing of statewide elections.
  5. Related Group breaks ground on complex at old Tampa Tribune site

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — When Miami developer Jorge Perez first eyed a 4.2-acre tract on the west bank of the Hillsborough River two years ago, people asked him if he wouldn't prefer to build on the opposite side closer to the downtown core.

    No way.

    From left, Related Group executive associate Arturo Penaa, Jorge Perez, center, founder and CEO of the Related Group, Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Steve Patterson, the President of Related Development dig their shovels  during the groundbreaking ceremony of the 400 unit Riverwalk Manor apartment complex on site of the old Tampa Tribune building on Wednesday. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]