Some look forward to Thanksgiving day. Cooking with your family and putting a delicious meal on the table. Others stress about the upcoming holiday. Cooking for a crowd can be intimidating, especially for a holiday that is focused around the meal that you put on the table. Hopefully these tips and tricks will help everyone on the Thanksgiving hosting spectrum.
Tip 1: Remember what the day is really about
Yes, we all love the delicious Thanksgiving meal and look forward to the mashed potatoes and marshmallow topped sweet potatoes all year long, however that is not what the day is really about. It's about sharing time with family and friends and taking a moment to give thanks for all of the things we are grateful for in life!
Tip 2: Don't over commit yourself
If you are a pro in the kitchen and look forward to the challenge of new recipes, then by all means spend a day on Pinterest and find the most interesting ones. However, if this is the first Thanksgiving you are hosting your best bet may be to keep it simple. Don't over commit yourself by promising too many sides dishes and fancy intricate recipes. Stick to the basics and consider buying some of the dishes prepared to mix in with your homemade ones.
Tip 3: Cook over a couple of days
Don't try to make your entire Thanksgiving dinner in one day. There is only one of you and you only have one stove. Start cooking on Tuesday or Wednesday and plan to reheat the day of. Just make sure you are reheating each food properly so you don't dry out your masterpiece. For example if you are going to reheat turkey, do so in some chicken stock so it doesn't dry out.
Tip 4: Make a thorough shopping list and go the week before
No one wants to be part of the grocery store madness on Thanksgiving day. Or worst yet, you realize you forgot a vital ingredient and the grocery stores have already closed. Shop the week before and double check your list before you head out so you don't have to make any last minute shopping trips.
Tip 5: Be willing to improvise
You go to make the perfect turkey and realize that you don't have a roasting rack. Instead you can place it on top of a pile of cut up vegetables or make a "rack" out of tin foil. This will keep the turkey from sticking to the pan. If your stove top if full and you want to make your mashed potatoes, cook the potatoes in the microwave instead. No one will the wiser.
Tip 6: Don't be afraid to ask for help
In the end don't try to do it all on your own. This could be as simple as asking family members to bring a dish to pass. You can also head to your local supermarket to buy some prepared dishes. If you feel you need even more help then that call a personal chef like me or a cater to prepare your Thanksgiving for you. This will completely remove the stress and allow you to fully enjoy the day.