If you’re tasked with hosting this year’s thanksgiving dinner, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. From juicy turkey to all the trimmings, there’s likely lots on your to-do list. Rest assured—we’ve compiled a list of 5 top-level tips designed to ensure that your holiday is both more relaxed and more successful than ever before.
The Perfectly Pre-Cooked Turkey
A great trick to turkey perfection without all the stress is cooking it ahead of time. This can be done up to 3 days before the big meal, and, if done correctly, can still produce beautifully juicy and delicious meat. The process is outlined here and can help save you time, stress and oven space. The most important part of the process, whether you cook your turkey days before or day-of, is to let the meat rest for 30-45 minutes before cutting it. This keeps the moisture inside of the meat. If you cut the turkey (or any meat for that matter) before it has properly cooled, it will steam and all of the moisture will escape. If you find that you’ve overcooked the turkey and taken the juice out of the meat, before serving pour some warm chicken broth over the sliced meat.
Make Less Mess
Planning ahead and giving yourself ample time to cook slowly and deliberately can significantly improve the cleanliness of the process. Rushed cooking can cause spills, mismeasurements and frustration. These tips from Kitchn.com can help you perfect cleaner-cooking—even during the busiest of the holiday bustle.
Cart out the Coolers
During the holidays, refrigerator real estate is pretty priceless. If guests will be arriving with additional food, there might not be enough room. Consider pulling out a large cooler and filling it with ice. This is a great place to store drinks and condiments, leaving the precious fridge space for the precious food.
No one likes cold mashed potatoes, but it’s difficult to leave them to the last minute and still be freed-up for your other dinner prep needs. Pull out a counter crock pot for potato storage to ensure they stay piping hot while you tend to any other pressing needs. If you’ve also made their gravy ahead of time, a smaller crock pot or coffee/soup thermos will work perfectly to keep everything the right temperature.
Ask for Assistance
Be sure to remember that you don’t have to shoulder all of the holiday duties by yourself. We often help clients with holiday prep, from main course options to scrumptious sides and deserts. Feel free to reach out for our resources—from fresh, local farm turkeys to home-grown cranberries, we love supporting small local businesses and lending our expertise to families.
Between the rush to plan and prep, be sure to remember what the holiday is really about, and to spend time enjoying it. We hope your holiday is a wonderful one, and as always, feel free to reach out to Geppetto Catering at any time!