"Honestly, I need a full vacation from that Thanksgiving meal," Scarlett Johansson said of preparing a holiday meal for a dozen guests all on her own

By Benjamin VanHoose
December 03, 2019 01:51 PM

Luckily for her Thanksgiving spread, Scarlett Johansson was able to phone one culinary friend who talked her through a tricky gravy recipe.

Stopping by Live! With Kelly and Ryan on Monday, Johansson, 35, recounted the difficult time she had pulling together a holiday feast for 13 guests all on her own last week. Though she usually shares the annual cooking duties, she was forced to take over the kitchen all on her own so her “very pregnant sister” could rest.

“Honestly, I need a full vacation from that Thanksgiving meal. I don’t know about you guys, but … I was struggling hardcore,” the Marriage Story actress joked. “… It was a lot of people. It was very intense.”

The holiday menu staple that proved most challenging for the movie star was the gravy, which prompted Johansson to have a “full-blown panic attack” while preparing.

“You make all that broth — I couldn’t believe it,” she said. “I was stirring this huge witch’s broth, and then it cooks down to like nothing.”

Credit: John Shearer/Getty; Gabe Ginsberg/Getty
Scarlett Johansson
| Credit: Stefanie Keenan/Getty

Too late to order a hastily-delivered emulsifier (she looked up the cooking tool mid-breakdown after someone told her it would simplify the process), Johansson instead called her chef friend Bobby Flay to rescue her gravy before it went too far off the rails.

“I’m friends with Bobby Flay, and so I did FaceTime him over the gravy — sorry, Bobby, I’m blowing up your spot,” she joked. “… I didn’t wanna throw that out there, because it’s like my secret sauce, but yeah, Bobby Flay actually did help me figure out the gravy.”

Referring to her Flay speed dial as the “pretty big trick up her sleeve,” Johansson admitted that he served as a sufficient stand-in therapist, as well, calming her down amid her hectic cooking responsibilities.

“He talked me from like an 11 down to like a four,” she laughed. “… Yeah, it was intense.”

When it was all said and done, Johansson said she couldn’t help but be disappointed in the harsh reality that her 48 hours of cooking resulted in 25 minutes of devouring around the table.”No one was talking, everybody was just eating greedily — all you could hear was, like, chewing and smacking,” she recalled.

As for whether she’d do it all again, she said there’s no avoiding it: “I have to! Thanksgiving comes every year, it’s relentless.”