Being the person responsible for preparing Thanksgiving dinner sounds stressful to some, but with the right tools and prep roasting a turkey and preparing the meal can be easy (even fun)!
A Week Before
First, we need to make sure we have all the tools needed. This will make the cooking process easier and more fun with new supplies!
- Carving Board – Make sure your board is big enough to fit the entire turkey!
- Carving Set – Having a sharp knife makes all the difference when it comes time to carve the turkey. A sharp knife can end up saving a lot of time too!
- Roasting Pan– Throwing some veggies in the oven with some garlic and herbs in a roasting pan will be your side dish savior! Let them soften away while you focus on that turkey.
- Roasting Rack – Although a roasting rack is not absolutely necessary, it allows the turkey to sit above the fat and juice. This is completely optional!
- Baster- It is time to replace your baster if the bulb is cracked or inflexible.
- Thermometer – Make sure your thermometer is long enough to reach the center of your turkey!
- Serving Spoons– make sure you have serving spoons or tongs for each dish!
About 3 Days Before
Now that you have all your essentials, you need to find the perfect turkey!
Turkeys come fresh, frozen, organic, self-basting, and anything in between. When deciding what kind you want, it is important to keep in mind that frozen turkeys can take a few days to thaw – about one day for every five pounds. The turkey isn’t something to be scared off- pick the method that will work best with your entire prep list.
What size turkey? Generally, you’ll want about a pound per person (don’t forget about leftovers!).
One Day Before
Anything you can do early, do it! (You’ll thank me later).
- Make a timeline of your Thanksgiving day – WHAT you’ll cook and WHEN
- Set the table and get your serving dishes ready
- Slice veggies, bread for stuffing, and any other ingredients – store your bread in the oven overnight (make sure the oven is OFF)
- Make the cranberry sauce
- Bake the desserts
- Put drinks in the fridge to chill
- Create flower arrangements (use a hallowed pumpkin as a vase for cute details)
- You already have your cooking schedule! This should take some pressure off
- Use buffet style serving
- Keep side dishes warm in a slow cooker to save oven space
- Make sure the dishwasher is empty so it’s ready when you need it
Now dig out your favorite family recipes and get to it!
Don’t forget the stuffing, green beans, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie! Maybe even a cup of coffee to end the evening.
Happy Thanksgiving from everyone at Sterling Restaurant Supply! Remember to enjoy time with your family and friends!