Every year people across the world start planning for their winter holidays starting with Thanksgiving Dinner. While many of you are busy preparing the list of to-do things, places to visit and gifts to pack for the festive season, it is also going to be really busy and stressful time with all the planning and last minute things. Getting gifts, traveling, packing, managing the guests, family, and all that becomes overwhelming. As a result, people forget to enjoy the holidays getting busy with the preparations.
Similarly, without any advance planning, the Thanksgiving Dinner can also add to the burden as you cut down the holiday plans and celebrations. Before moving your focus to Thanksgiving, learn how to stay stress-free during the festive season. With that, you surely don’t want to start your holidays with a disappointing dinner. Therefore, if you are looking for different ways to make the Thanksgiving Dinner stress free where not only the guests but you as the host of the part can also enjoy the feast equally, here are some of the dinner strategies to simplify your Thanksgiving Dinner planning.
Early Planning Works
While looking for stress-free ways to prepare for Thanksgiving day, planning around a week or two ahead would be beneficial. For this, using a spreadsheet would help you organize the dinner plans well. Simply take a pen and paper and write down the dishes or new recipes that you would want to prepare this time. To make it more precise also mention which ones you can prepare in advance and which needs to be prepared on the same day before serving.
Make a note of every little possible thing you need to remember to make sure you are not missing anything for dinner. Your notes should include, dishes, ingredients, dining props, accessories, and drinks.
Prepare A Reasonable Invite List
Getting a lot of friends and family for the Thanksgiving Dinner may not give you a satisfying feeling with many different things to arrange. Instead, prepare a list of invites limited to 8 to 10 adults who are very close. Go for nearer relatives avoiding the second cousins who pay visits very rare.
Calling one side family is also a good idea while the second side can be called the next year. This would help in making the dinner party a big success with less stress.
The feast would also be well managed, and you would be left with less after dinner mess to clean up.
Stock up the Liquor
Fine wines, spirits, beer, cocktails, mixers, and sodas, sounds like a party, Right? Have you stocked up in advance? This is the second thing that needs to be done once your list is ready. While stocking, add some extra bottles too for Thanksgiving. Get some decorative pieces for the final day. For this, look for lime wedges, flower petals, ice blocks, cute bow pieces, etc. All these would surely add some spice to the decoration of the Thanksgiving dinner party.
Gather Fresh Ingredients
Once again it’s time to get back to your list and start with gathering the ingredients too. Be it the main feast, desserts, turkeys, side dishes, or even the oysters, always get the fresh ingredients. Again, you can move to small farms or shops that would serve the fresh ingredients at reasonable prices.
Even while looking for heirloom cranberries, breed turkeys, biodynamic creams, or even the bacon, the fresh ingredients pulled out from the oven are sure to add deliciousness to the feast. The freshly killed birds like wet bines, dry rubs, dry brines will add a juicy texture to the turkey feast instead of the frozen ones.
Look for Outsourcing Dishes
Outsourcing your meals or hiring a personal chef is also another simple strategy for your Thanksgiving Dinner that takes away the stress of cooking delicious food and planning the party. With a good chef working on your menu, you are sure to get finger licking food items on the table, while all you need to focus on to is the decoration and having fun with your near and dear ones.
There are also alternatives like customized food items such as salads, desserts and rolls etc. that available in the market which you would only have to give a finishing touch by heating and decorating it. Outsourcing your dinner menu to restaurants or chefs would really help you ease all the Thanksgiving party plans.
Let Your Guests Bring Food
It’s not necessary that only the host carries out every preparation of the Thanksgiving dinner. After all, the guests are none other than the family members. So, the visitors can also be assigned a particular dish which would be added as deserts or as spicy snacks and starters during the dinner. Getting dishes like sweet potatoes, salads, rolls, chocolate cupcakes, stuffing, etc. from the guests would reduce the cooking part on your side and would help you focus in the main course and enjoy it properly.
Don’t miss the Turkey Breast
Turkey dishes are an important part of the Thanksgiving dinners. But wait, getting a big turkey is not necessary for any Thanksgiving feast. The bigger the turkey would be, the more time it would take for cooking and preparing it. So, look for small turkey breasts, which can be easily prepared in crock pots and even cutlets. This would also give you an opportunity to store the remaining of the turkey breast by freezing them and enjoying them later. Looking for a well and completely prepared turkey would be the best to go with as after purchasing all you need to do is slide it in the oven.
Moderate Your Side Dishes
Wait! How many side dishes are there on your list? Adding too many dishes is certainly a bad idea. Prepare a list of side dishes that can be managed easily. Again, preparing one or two dishes in advance or a day ahead is also the best idea. It is not necessary to go for difficult or time-consuming side dishes. Prepare simple dishes your family loves as it would also help in giving a perfect complement to the main course.
Thanksgiving dinner is not only about the meals. It’s the time of the year when you meet your closest family and friends and enjoy traditional meals and thank the Lord for letting you be part of all the celebrations with your near and dear ones. Plan some after dinner activities like games, music or movies and make your Thanksgiving dinner a memorable time of the year.
Food brings everyone together so no matter if you prepare it yourself or outsource to professional chefs, make sure you plan ahead of the event and save yourself some extra time with kids and rest of the loved ones. Nothing needs to be perfect but the happiness and the joy!