Because there is so much prepping and food involved with Thanksgiving, people tend to overlook what items they will need to actually cook and serve the food they plan on making.
With Thanksgiving being a week away, take this time to figure out what you will be using and to plan where it will go.
Sound odd? Let me explain it a bit, this is the point where you want to decide on which baking dish the stuffing is going in, which bowl the mashed potatoes will be served in, etc. This is especially important for dishes that need to be heated up in the oven. Once you’ve decided on the dishes, you can play around with placement in the oven and figuring out cooking times.
What goes where in the oven and when does it go in? For example, stuffing takes longer to cook through than green bean casserole so you’d want that to go in first. And you will want to make sure the items that do need heated up can share space and all fit in the oven.
Once you have the baking and cookware items picked and you know they will all fit in the oven when they need to, it’s time to move on to the table. Whether you’re doing a buffet style set up or a big sit down to-do, you need to make sure all the food items will fit on the table.
Pick out what serving dishes you’d like to use for the big day and start arranging them on the table. Trust me, it’s a lot easier to figure this out when the dishes are empty instead of trying to do it the day of when they are full of hot food and surrounded by hungry guests!
I know, this sounds like a lot of work. But by tackling these little details before Thanksgiving, it makes the big day run so much smoother eliminating a lot of stress. Once you have the casserole dishes picked out and the serving bowls decided on, you can set those aside so they are ready to go when you need them.
Make a list of what kitchen items you’ll need and then go through that check list and pull all of those items out setting them aside. Checking items off the list can be done the night before. When it comes time to start cooking, you’ll have everything ready to grab and go.
Don’t forget that many things can be made the day before so that this will save you even more time on Thanksgiving Day allowing you to spend more time with your family and further reducing some stress.
Things like a roux for gravy or even the gravy can be made the day before. So can the stuffing and green bean casserole (wait until you heat it up to add the crispy onions).
I’ll be providing you with an example schedule on getting you through the week of Thanksgiving! Shopping days, when items can get prepped, and what things can get made ahead so keep an eye out for that!
In the meantime, start getting those dishes picked out!