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Tips On Salvaging Thanksgiving Dinner Disasters

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The clock is ticking down to Thanksgiving dinner and you may be thinking you can't get it all done.

CBS2's Emily Smith got together with Sabrina Sexton, with the Institute of Culinary Education, to talk about tips on how to avoid a dinner disaster this holiday.

According to Sexton, these potential disasters can be averted or repaired in time for your Thanksgiving feast.

With turkey, it should be in your refrigerator thawing at this point. It's a process that usually takes at least 24 hours. If you try to cook a partially frozen turkey, it likely won't be safe to eat.

So what do you do when your turkey is under cooked and you don't have enough time to cook it through? Keep slicing.

"Best thing to do: cut it up in pieces and put those pieces back in the oven or in a real pinch maybe in the microwave and they'll be done in a matter of minutes," Sexton said.

The next potential disaster? You forgot to take out the giblet bag. Sexton said that's OK too.

"Honestly, the bag -- because it's surrounded by the turkey -- is not going to get very, very hot," she said. "So the likelihood of any of the plastic melting or anything is very, very low. So just take it out and move on."

Your gravy can be made in the same pan you cooked the turkey in for extra flavor, but if you use too much flower you'll have lumps.

"You could put it in a blender if you have it and just turn it on and within a matter of seconds it should really smooth it out," Sexton explained.

Finally, dessert. It's typically the last course and arguably the most memorable.

The experts suggest baking pies Thanksgiving morning, so you can let them cool on the counter. That way you don't have to refrigerate overnight, which creates a soggy crust, Smith reported.

And if you burn the pie, you can camouflage it with homemade whipped cream. It's just one ingredient: heavy cream -- no sugar needed and whips in minutes.

You can also scrape off some of the dark spots, or get creative and make something completely new.

Just cut and crush ginger snap cookies and layer them with spoonfuls of pie in a glass. Alternate pumpkin pie with cookies and whipped cream, ending with crushed ginger snaps on top.

And the most important tip? Enjoy every bite and have a happy Thanksgiving.

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