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Thanksgiving cooking tips

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Here are some tips for a successful Thanksgiving dinner

It’s almost that time of year; you know, when those extra chairs and the extensions to the dining room table all come out from their hiding places and make themselves comfortable in your living room. But what about some thanksgiving cooking tips to make sure everything goes as planned? With all the hustle and guests (many of whom you may not even want to see, much less serve dinner to) knowing what to serve and how to prepare beforehand creates a smoother path strewn with fewer mishaps, less stress and more pleasure for you on this important American holiday.

Whether you are a novice at such a project or a well-seasoned pro, the following shortcuts will make hosting this traditional American dinner much easier. This is, after all, the “big deal meal” of the year for most Americans and family traditions are built upon its success. Knowing you can cut corners and that no one will ever know the difference appeals to the cooking “larceny” that lives deep within all of our culinary souls.

Which thanksgiving cooking tips can you use to make your dinner relatively stress free and enjoyable?

The key to having a good time at your own thanksgiving party and to getting everything done in time is planning. Consider yourself a boy scout and be prepared at all times. Follow these thanksgiving cooking tips and your holiday dinner is sure to be a winner for everyone involved except maybe the turkey.

1- Cook a lot of the meal the day before you serve it

Peel those sweet potatoes, boil and mash them the night before. Clean that turkey and place it in the roaster and then back in the fridge.

2- Measure ahead of time

One of the best thanksgiving cooking tips you will ever receive is this one. Save time and energy when making a big meal by measuring everything out before you start cooking. This is a great time-saver!

3- Plan the menu and theme of your thanksgiving dinner

Think about your menu and write down the things you want to serve your guests, bearing in mind those dishes that cannot be changed and those that can be “brought up a notch,” as chef, Emeril Lagasse, always says. Break tradition when you can, but dare not to when you can’t. Plan a theme for your dinner table and think about which plates, decorations, and serving pieces will bolster that theme. It can be simple or complex, involving heirloom china and crystal, flowers, vegetables, and decorations from your yard and garden.

4- Plan your cooking schedule

Carefully plan and write out a cooking schedule and a timetable. Indicate those dishes that can be made ahead of time, those that can be frozen, those that will require the crockpot or microwave, and those that must be cooked at the last minute.

5-Don’t limit cooking to just the oven for this big dinner

Crockpot or pressure cooker recipes and those prepared on the stovetop combined with the oven is the best way to go for such a big meal. Find out more about other methods of preparing turkey, such as: brining, deep-frying and grilling. This way, cooking isn’t concentrated on just one appliance. Utilizing an alternate cooking source for the main course always decreases time spent in the kitchen.

6- Find different ways to make pumpkin pie

Recipes abound on the Internet and are surprising varied when it comes to making that old Thanksgiving dinner staple, pumpkin pie. You can roast your pumpkin or prepare the pie from a crockpot pudding. The sky is the limit as well as the boundaries of your own imagination.

Thanksgiving is a time for family when traditions are born and memories are made. Involve the whole family in preparation for this gala dinner event. Get your children interested, but be certain that the tasks they are asked to perform are best suited to their ages and abilities. Accept all help if it is offered. One of the best thanksgiving cooking tips is to have one person who hosts the gathering make the turkey and trimmings and have all the other guests bring a dish. This not only keeps with the tradition of the original thanksgiving, but makes it a lot easier on the dishes, appliances and aspirin supply in the home of the host.

Happy thanksgiving to all and to all a good…whatever.

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