Here are five kitchen tools you will need to survive Thanksgiving:
1. A good-quality Y peeler. My favorite is the Kuhn Rikon Original Swiss Peeler. It's cheap and holds its edge for a long time. You'll need this for peeling potatoes, yams, apples...and don't even think about peeling a butternut squash unless you have one of these.
Bonus: 15 minutes of washing dishes burns about 25 calories.
3. A Pyrex Pie Plate or two...or four. (I have six; I make a lot of pies on Thanksgiving.) These go from the fridge or freezer to a preheated oven with no worries. Unlike with metal pie plates, you can microwave leftover pie right in the dish. And it's dishwasher safe, too.
Bonus: Pyrex pie plates are great for reheating gravy- or sauce-doused leftovers in the microwave without spilling over.
4. A large grooved cutting board. Avoid the waterfall of turkey juice pouring off your counter this year. (Sorry, Fido.) Invest in a grooved cutting board big enough to hold your bird. You'll use it every time you carve a roast or slice a steak.
5. A fine mesh strainer. You'll use this for straining gravy and stock, draining potatoes, washing cranberries, and a hundred other things. Making creme brulee or ice cream base? Pour through this into a bowl to filter out scrambled-egg bits. You can also use this in place of a sifter--just hold over bowl, place flour/cornstarch/powdered sugar/etc. inside, and tap rim to sift.
Bonus: no carpal tunnel syndrome from squeezing the sifter handle!
Avoid models with wooden handles if you want to put it in the dishwasher.