Thanksgiving 2020, The Day I Almost Burned the New House to the Ground.

Thanksgiving morning started out lovely.  We all slept in a bit, I shared a leisurely breakfast with my husband.  We sipped coffee and made plans for the day, plans to FaceTime with Sierra and then later with Uncle Larry and Aunt Doris.  After breakfast, Dirk took Jack for his morning walk while I gathered the ingredients to create our Thanksgiving feast.

Thanksgiving has always been my favourite holiday.  Especially when I was a child.  We would have a get together with my Mom’s parents, we would stop by my Dad’s parents, and then of course we had our own meal prepared at home.  So much wonderful food, more pies than you could ever stuff down your gullet, hanging out with the cousins, just a fantastic day.

I still love Thanksgiving, even while living abroad in Germany. It’s a little more difficult to get all of the items needed, but for the past three years we have had small gatherings. Just the in-laws and my step son.  Our previous apartment was not large enough to host a real party.  I was so exited (for many reasons) when we moved in to the new house, Finally, I would be able to have a real Thanksgiving celebration.  We could have all of our friends and family over and I could make a giant feast!

Then, the pandemic continued to rage on, we were put into a second lock down.  No giant party for us.

But, we were going to make the best of it.  We found two little turkeys, I had one can of the ever elusive Pumpkin Puree in the cupboard, we had eggs to devil, and the makings for green bean casserole.

But most importantly, I had a secret weapon.  A few months earlier, Dirk had bought a large, Oster Electric Roaster Oven for me.  It would make holiday cooking a breeze!  For those that are not aware of the how wonderful a Roaster Oven is, let me tell you.  It totally frees up the oven!  No more having your oven occupied for 5-7 hours while the bird bakes!  You just pop them into the Roaster and turn it on, Presto Magico!  Bake all your sides in your oven, and they are ready when the bird is done.  Have to cook two pies?  No problem, your oven is free for use! Oh, and the turkey always come out perfect, just perfect.

The magic moment was upon us, it was time to start the turkeys.  I had them all buttered up, seasoned and ready to go.  I turned the Roaster on and then……… smoke started to fill the room!  AAGGGHH!  I quick turned it off.  I thought maybe I hadn’t cleaned the inner section well enough, so I lifted the pan holding the birds and set them aside.  Quickly washed the inner section gain, and dried it all well.  It was really, really hot to the touch.  Weird, I thought.  It all seemed strange, but, I turned it on again.  This time it started to make crackling sounds, more smoke and I could feel the heat coming off the outside of the Roaster.  I quickly turned it off again, and unplugged it from the socket.  Dirk got out of the shower to find the kitchen filled with smoke and me looking panicked.

After some investigation, and looking through the very fine print on the paperwork, we found that the Roaster was made to handle 110v only, not the 220v that we have here in Germany. Oops, I literally cooked my brand new Electric Roaster Oven.  Expat fail number 198, always check the voltage requirement on imported appliances. Big time fail.

But do not worry friends! I took all of the metal racks out of our tiny European oven, and was able to cram my turkeys inside.  Even managed to get the door to shut all of the way.  We still had a fantastic dinner, albeit much later than planned. And eventually, the smell of burned wires/plastic faded away.

This year I added a new reason for us to be thankful, We are very thankful that I didn’t burn the new house to the ground!


The now deceased Electric Roaster Oven. A very expensive mistake.

For those of you that celebrate, How was your Thanksgiving? Please let me know in the comments.

19 thoughts on “Thanksgiving 2020, The Day I Almost Burned the New House to the Ground.

  1. We had a smoke filled pre Thanksgiving. My husband was making the pies the day before and some filling started spilling into the stove. He had to open the sliders and the door and turn on some fans to get the smoke out. Meanwhile, I’m working from home and had to put one of my masks on to keep going without coughing the entire time. But its not Thanksgiving without some kind of story to tell.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yikes! That could have gone (even more) wrong quickly. Glad you were able to salvage the day… and the birds. Can’t say I’ve ever seen turkeys that small but I’m sure they were nice and juicy.
    We had a quiet day of cooking and tinkering in the Barn Mahal. Dinner for two so we have lots of leftovers.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yikes…glad things didn’t go too far and start a fire! It was just me, myself, and I for this Thanksgiving, eating vegan. The high point of the day was my early evening walk during which a large moon was rising in the east while a brilliant orange sun set in the west. I’m alive. Quite the year, isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I remember the year we lived in Australia and the oven ran out of propane while I was cooking that very difficult pumpkin pie. The prized can of pumpkin purée was nowhere to be found so I had to cook from a REAL pumpkin! Horrors! So glad you saved your birds and there was no fire, I can totally see that happening for me!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. How scary! I’m thankful everything turned out well for you in the end. I host Thanksgiving every year. I was more stressed than ever this year because the townhouse we rented is so tiny. So small in fact that two people can barely fit in the kitchen. Don’t get me started on the lack of counter space. We had four extra people for Thanksgiving, how we all fit in our place is beyond me, but everyone had a nice time regardless.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh no, I’m so sad about your roaster! But glad that you took care of the problem before crackling sounds turned into something even worse. We had a tiny little Thanksgiving, but then we always do. I cook–and enjoy leftovers for days on end!

    Liked by 1 person

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