What Not to Do: Thanksgiving Dinner With a Drone – and Other Questionable Cooking Advice

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Some things are holiday classics,  two things that come to mind in my household for Thanksgiving are the song Alice’s Restaurant first published by Arlo Guthrie in 1967 and the cooking the Thanksgiving Dinner with a Drone video.    First published by us several years ago,  here it is again.

It’s that time of year again – time to review what you can (and cannot) do with a drone for Thanksgiving dinner prep.   That’s right, there are YouTube videos on how to hunt a turkey, cook a turkey, and even make mashed potatoes and gravy.

Unless you are trying to create a humorous marketing video (and have very, very understanding housemates) it might be best just to work on using your drone as some sort of Pinterest-worthy centerpiece.  (Go ahead and search – there’s nothing new under the sun.)  But for the entertainment and edification of those pilots who view the holiday primarily as a day off for more drone time, here are some not very good ideas for using drones on Thanksgiving.

Cooking the Turkey

The team at IntelligentUAS published a video last year of an expert flyer using a drone to dip a turkey into a deep fryer.  Possible, yes – but unless you can set up your fryer in the middle of a field, have an industrial strength drone and are willing to sacrifice 3 -4 birds to practice and accidents you might be better off just using a kitchen glove.

The other way of cooking a turkey with a drone is to equip the drone with a homemade flamethrower and roast it (to cinders, apparently.  This method is evidently best for vegetarians.)  The flamethrower turkey roasting video published in 2015 by a CT teen actually landed the teen and his family in court and in serious trouble with both local law enforcement and the FAA, so that one should probably be crossed off your list.

Cooking Everything Else

In a great video produced by the marketing team at Autel Robotics last year, an Autel drone is used to peel potatoes, chop carrots, and – equipped with kitchen beaters instead of props – whip up a creamy mash and gravy.  But, in speaking with the chef last year, he did tell DRONELIFE that it took a full day to scrape the resulting mess off of the ceiling and walls of his kitchen.

And lastly, let’s not forget another really bad use of drones: Hunting the turkey.  We’re not going to re-post the video because it’s unlawful in many states to use a drone for hunting.  (It can be hard to find this because it’s often filed under Fish and Game laws rather than drone-related laws – if you’ve ever considered this check your state.)  Even if it isn’t illegal where you live, with all of the capabilities that drones have for aerial imaging and even thermographic imagery using one to track a bird with a brain the size of a walnut just isn’t fair.




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