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The Daily Dish Top Chef

Here's How Gail Simmons Keeps the Thanksgiving Meal Tasting Fresh Every Year

The Top Chef judge is all about mixing tradition with newness.

By Tamara Palmer

Gail Simmons offers the keys to throwing delicious holiday parties in her new cookbook Bringing It Home: Favorite Recipes from a Life of Adventurous Eating, just out last month. And she should know: Every year, she looks forward to throwing her own and eating those foods that only come out during the holidays.

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"I love being able to celebrate, spending time with family. I love cooking," the Top Chef judge tells The Feast. "Thanksgiving for me is a reason to be in the kitchen, more than anything, and I love that tradition. I love making dishes that I really only eat once a year because they are passed down through my family."

This on-the-go multitasker also recognizes that the holidays are a good time to take a little break from working too much. "It's an excuse to be with friends and take time off to celebrate the year and try new things too," she says.

She makes the turkey and the fixings that everyone expects year after year, but she's always open to spicing it up with new ideas, which involves getting in other people's family business.

"I love making those traditional dishes, but I also like learning other people's traditions. That's why for really big meals I'm cooking I always delegate other people to bring and share because everyone has different traditions and it's fun to see what other people do."

Tune in for Top Chef's Season 15 premiere on Thursday, December 7 at 10/9c!

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