Make thanksgiving entertaining a breeze by making everything appear effortless and elegant. The secret? Advanced preparation. Start with planning your menu, confirming the amount of guests, and verifying if you’ve got all the proper kitchen tools and equipment to cook everything. Pro tip: Get yourself a meat thermometer -Trust us this will ensure your bird is cooked properly! Assigning family members tasks; making an appetizer, dessert, wine & beer, and ice is a great way to reduce some of the stress as well. You don’t need to do everything! Doing too much is often the root cause of things going wrong and not turning out the way you had hoped. Instead focus your time and energy on fewer things to make sure you can execute them perfectly and at your best.
Our menu roundup!
We’re sharing magazine worthy recipes that provide wholesome and delicious menu options for all styles and taste buds. These recipes are crafted with the season’s freshest ingredients for simplicity and unparalleled taste. There is nothing better than enjoying food made with love and compassion and knowing exactly what went into that dish. We love good food just as much as the next person. Were combining comfort and familiarities for the ultimate thanksgiving feast!
Appetizer- plum crostinis with apple and maple boursin
Cocktail- plum sour
Main course- cider roasted chicken follow the same method if cooking turkey simply adjust your cook time!
sides- wild rice stuffing, spicy green beans
dessert- bourbon pumpkin cheesecake
Entertainment tips and tricks!
Six steps that will keep you on track this thanksgiving 🙂
Start with the menu. Give yourself time to plan what your going to make. Start to think about what you want to serve two weeks prior by making a list, doing some research, creating a Pinterest board however it is you organize yourself. Keep track of your recipes, preparation methods, and cooking instructions in an area you can easily access and review to avoid scrambling at the last minute and going back and forth while your cooking. Once you have a confirmed amount of guests write out your grocery list. This should be done at least a week in advance if not more. Start your shopping two or three days in advance no more as you want things to stay fresh that way if you missed anything you still have time or even better you can ask someone who’s coming to bring it. This will also give you the opportunity to re- arrange the fridge if needed by getting rid of un necessary things that are taking up space
Set the table and stock up on beer and wine the night or two before. By setting your table you’ll have an accurate picture of all the seats, your cutlery and serveware. If you don’t have enough it’s perfectly okay to borrow a set and some chairs if you need them. There is no need to go over board on the tablescape. Often simple is better. We went with apples that I collected along one of the outdoor paths in our neighbourhood from one of the many apple trees, some candles and pumpkins. We spent very little on décor here as the apples were at no cost, we already had the linen and candles and purchased the pumpkins. We love fresh fruits and veggies used as centrepieces so if you have access to fresh fruit trees like we did it’s a great way to make use that’s inexpensive. Go with a common colour palette and theme
The bird.. whether your serving turkey, chicken or something completely different fresh or frozen make sure you’ve allocated yourself enough time for it to defrost completely 24-36 hours ahead. It is not uncommon for people to cook their turkey the day before in fact most people do this if they have a large turkey. If you’ve got a big bird it does take a long time to cook because of it’s size this also means it will take a bit of time to carve as well. Doing it the day before avoids guests waiting on the turkey to reach it’s internal temperature, resting period, carving time, clean up and mess. There’s nothing worse than food not being ready on time and you having miscalculated the time it takes for things to cook. Don’t disappoint your guests. All you need to do is cook it exactly how you planned, let it rest covered for 30 minutes, carve it and cover with some of the dripping to keep it moist. Store the cut turkey in the fridge overnight and reheat in the oven 45-55 minutes to warm up. Save your drippings and reheat on the stove to make a gravy. If your cooking for a smaller crowd and are going with chicken (that’s what we did) it may not be necessary for you to do this well in advance. You can easily do this in the early afternoon to have it all ready for dinner and give yourself some extra time to clean things up in the kitchen and prepare for the event.
It’s time to start prepping. By doing this the day before you’ll save yourself so much time, all the clean up, piles of dirty dishes and counter space. Especially if you only have one oven.. space is limited. Most of all you wont feel burnt out. If there are any vegetables and side dishes you can blanche or partially cook you should do this. If your serving a side of green beans blanche them the day before and arrange them how you want to serve them so that come dinner time your simply doing a final cook or warming things up. Same thing goes for cutting any vegetables you want to serve. (onions, carrots, celery, potatoes.. chop em all) Don’t forget to plan out which dishes you will use to serve all the food- sides, apps, main, dessert and glassware.
Make copies of your recipes and study them! Get yourself organized by reading your recipes a few times to familiarize yourself with the process. recipes. You dont want to start making some of your recipes and realize that your dessert needs to cool overnight or that your turkey/whole chicken needs to defrost the night before. Shuffling through cookbooks or recipe pages while your hands are covered in food is gross. Tape your recipes to the fridge or the kitchen cabinets in order to easily view the cooking steps and take them down just before the guest arrive.
What’s for dessert?? Homemade or store bought you should have a idea of what’s on the menu. Pies can easily be made a head of time and kept refrigerated. If you feel like it’s too much to make a pie opt for a crumble instead as an alternative. Everyone’s always got room for dessert.
And the final step. It’s the big day. You’ve done all the preparations you can and you’ve got your schedule down pat of what apps are being served when and what’s going in the oven to get reheated at what time. When the guests arrive greet them with something to drink to keep them occupied. Thanksgiving tastes better with booze and snacks! Of course the star of your menu is the main dish but your real secret weapon is the drinks and appetizers. If guests show up early or things don’t go as planned in the kitchen and need some extra time what better way to keep the vibe going. Prep your apps ahead of time so that when guests arrive all you need to do is take them out of the fridge or head to your cocktail station and quickly mix up some drinks and have ready-to-go self serve drinks. While the guests are mingling it’s the perfect time to slip away and check on everything in the kitchen.