I learned that even though it saves time, it's not a god idea to pre-slice potato and soak in water. While the water keeps them from turning black, it leaches out the starch and curls up the slices so that they don't lie flat, both of which were important in making a gratin!
I also learned that many things can be done ahead of time nicely. I made the cranberry relish a week a half ago, and they were still delicious. The cornbread chestnut dressing was made the night before and re-heated up after the turkey vacated the oven, and was also delicious. The other veggies sides, braised artichokes with pancetta and preserved myer lemon and spicy shitaki with green onions all can be done early in the afternoon and nuked before serving.
Oh, here is my menu.
Alice Water turkey brine
Vegetarian cornbread dressing with chestnuts
Braised artichokes with pancetta and preserved lemons
Sauteed fresh shitaki with pancetta and green onions
Sweet potato and potato gratin with sage
Turky pan gravy with mushroom
Cranberry and pumpkin upside cake
All in all, it was a delicous and successful Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!