Monday, November 16, 2009

8 Easy Steps to a Stress Free Thanksgiving Dinner

Anybody who has prepared a Thanksgiving meal knows it can be quite time consuming. Some families assign certain dishes to each family member making it easier to prepare the overall meal. Years ago when we moved out of state I was faced with preparing the complete meal by myself for the first time. I soon found out that good planning was essential in order to pull off the entire meal by myself. I have come up with an organized system designed to make the process easier with minimal work.
  1. Start by shopping for all items needed to prepare the dishes to be served. It is best to shop a week ahead of time. Doing this insures that you miss the holiday rush on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. I used to work for a grocery store and trust me when I say that Wednesday is the single busiest grocery shopping day of the year. The turkey also needs about a week to thaw in the refrigerator so do shop ahead.
  2. Make sure you have a list of all items needed. This will prevent any forgotten items and another trip to the grocery store.
  3. On the Tuesday before the holiday make any pies that you plan to serve. They will be fine in the refrigerator.
  4. On the Wednesday before the holiday prepare your side dishes. Mix the stuffing and place in a plastic container. Boil the potatoes, cook the yams and if you plan on making deviled eggs then boil the eggs too. Then finish any other side dish you plan to serve.
  5. On Wednesday night set the table and put out your floral arrangement.
  6. Now it is Thanksgiving morning and time to pop the turkey in the oven. If you stuff your turkey the stuffing is already to go in the bird. If you bake it in the oven or crock pot you can do that after the turkey is in the oven.
  7. They only thing left to do is prepare any appetizers you might be serving. Right before dinner is served put the dinner rolls in the oven.
  8. Serve dinner!
The key is to plan and prepare ahead of time. Following these steps will make the preparation for your Thanksgiving dinner painless and easy.

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