I was wondering when I was going to be an official grown up and host my own holiday. My husband and I were thrilled when we were asked to host Thanksgiving in our new home this year!Since I am writing this after Thanksgiving you know we did survive and I can't wait to tell you about what we made and some tips I learned from my first Thanksgiving.
So in just two days my husband and I cooked Thanksgiving dinner for 16 of our family members. How was it all possible? Preparation,preparation, and MORE preparation. I am already shall I say an anal planner, but on a day like this is it very necessary. So my tip #1 is
1. Make many prep lists and make most sides the day before.
This amazing stuffing below was made the day before and slowly reheated the day of Thanksgiving. I purposely chose all recipes that had instructions on how to reheat them the day you would like to serve them. I prepped about 5 dishes the day before ( stuffing,mashed potatoes,cranberry sauce,pie,butternut squash) and it let me sleep in until... ahem.. 9am.
2. Go crazy with the Turkey
So we were dead set on deep frying our turkey this year. Instead when we went to buy the deep fryer we were drawn to an infrared deep fryer. It is great because it is oil-less ( who wants to spend $60 on oil anyway) and still gives you that super crunchy skin you were looking for. Did I mention it is less than $100? Oh yes, and why I was able to sleep until 9am. It cooks meat at about ten minutes per pound so it drastically cuts the cooking time of your bird!Might I add the meat comes out super moist and juicy!
3. Buffet is the Way to Go!
So because our table space was limited and we had a huge kitchen island we decided to go the buffet route. I got super cute clothespin labels for the food at Sur La Table and it was such a cute touch!
4. Don't just have a turkey...
Also have a turducken! I am dedicating an entire post to this fowl because it was so delicious! It is nice to have something different to accompany the usual turkey. What is a tur-duck-en? It is a turkey stuffed with a duck and a chicken! It is practically boneless besides the legs and wings of the turkey which means lots of meat for your guests that is super easy to cut.
5. Timing is Everything
So any chef will tell you timing is everything. If your turkey is ready, but your sides are still in the oven for the next thirty minutes it screws up everything!Prepping before helps to know what you need to reheat the day of. Pair dishes that reheat at the same temperature together and write down when starting from the dish that takes the longest to make to the shortest so you know how long everything will take.
If you follow some of these tips I have a feeling your first Thanksgiving will be as easy as mine was!
What are your best Thanksgiving Tips?