Thanksgiving In The 21st Century: A Far Cry From How The Pilgrims Did It

Ben Drake

Well, it’s that time of year again. Holiday decorations are everywhere you look. Starbucks is serving its drinks in festive red cups. And shoppers are gearing up for huge Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

Of course, if you drew the short straw like me this year, none of that matters. This Thanksgiving, while everyone else is out having a good time spreading and basking in holiday cheer, you’ll be spending your day in the kitchen.

But what if you didn’t have to? What if you and your guests could spend the day out and about while your turkey cooked itself? Imagine setting the bird in the oven, monitoring its progress, and even having it baste itself, all while you and your loved ones enjoyed one another’s company.

Not only would this eliminate unnecessary stress and increase your enjoyment of Thanksgiving, it would help ensure you cook the tastiest turkey.

Connected cooking through kitchen automation

If you’ve ever watched Star Trek, you’ve likely seen the food materializer. If not, here’s how it works: You simply press a button, and food magically appears in front of your very eyes – cooked and ready to eat. That’s how easy cooking should be.

Although we’re a few years away from an instant-order kitchen like this, technology does exist that can help simplify the meal-making process.

If you’ve ever prepared Thanksgiving dinner, you know it takes time. There’s prep work to do. You have to cut the vegetables. You have to make the stuffing. You have to put out the cranberry sauce.

But none of that compares to the constant monitoring your meal requires. You need to time everything just right. You need a plan for when to put things in and take things out of the oven. You need to remember to baste the turkey every 20 minutes. You need to keep an eye on the temperature of the oven so your turkey turns that perfect golden brown color. Frankly, it’s exhausting, and it really takes away from the excitement of your holiday.

With innovations in connected cooking, your meal can cook itself. Once you’ve completed your prep work, just pop your turkey and vegetables into the oven, place your cranberries and potatoes on the stove, adjust the cooking settings on your mobile device, and your work is essentially done. Smart basting tools, self-stirring pots, video-streaming capabilities, and auto-off push notifications all work together to let you actually enjoy your holiday.

Three ways innovations help in the kitchen

Technology is ushering in a brand-new age of cooking. In today’s modern world, the latest innovations will revolutionize what you can do in the kitchen by:

  • Increasing the uptime of your appliances: If your appliances are smart enough to cook your food, they’re smart enough to tell you when they’re going to break. The same self-awareness capabilities that help factory machinery predict downtime could be used to help your major household appliances predict when a failure is going to occur and provide you with the best options for repair.

Giving you a:

  • Set-it-and-forget-it option: With a smart kitchen, even the world’s worst chef can prepare a delicious meal. Food packaging now comes printed with scannable QR codes that allow you to auto-program oven settings and times. So you can pop your food into the oven and not even bother to check on it; it’ll come out perfectly every time.
  • Sending you regular cooking updates: Running behind schedule? Fear not. Just have your oven send a text message directly to you and all your guests to let everyone know there’s still 15 minutes left until dinner That way, you can continue talking to your guests instead of constantly running back and forth to the kitchen to check on the food.

The convenience of connected cooking

I’ve seen many articles recently that question whether connected gadgets are truly necessary. Between security concerns and other issues, I understand why people would be skeptical. But when it comes to pure convenience, connected devices can’t be beat.

The ultimate dream of connected cooking is to select a recipe, have your fridge dispense the ingredients, and send your food straight into the oven. Once there, an app would control the oven settings. When your food is ready, you’d receive a notification on your mobile device so you can take it out and enjoy the perfect meal.

What’s more appealing than a fridge-to-table dinner that requires minimal effort?

The Internet of Things is an amazing technology. So amazing, in fact, that it’ll help you make the perfect Thanksgiving dinner.

To meet the market’s expectations for increasingly fast, responsive, and personalized service, business speed will be everything. Find out how innovative processes can enable your enterprise to remain successful in this evolving landscape. Learn more and download the IDC paper “Realizing IoT’s Value – Connecting Things to People and Processes.