For many families, Thanksgiving is one of the few times during the year when everybody gets together in one place. So, if your home is that one place, you want to do everything you can to make sure the day is perfect. It is understandable that all of the prep work and cooking that comes with Thanksgiving Day can cause a little anxiety and stress! However, if you’re feeling this way, know that there are definitive steps you can take right now that will ensure complete success for your Thanksgiving gathering. Here are three of the most important ways to do so.
As with nearly anything in life, preparation is key to success on Thanksgiving Day. If you haven’t already begun thinking about your gathering and what your kitchen needs, now (about 2 weeks before the holiday) is the perfect time to start. For example, right now, you can take stock of your kitchen supplies, such as silverware, serving dishes, plates, and napkins. Find anything that you might need out of storage and wash them now. Take a look in your spice cabinet – do you have all of the spices that you’ll need for cooking the feast? Add any that you’re running low on to your shopping list.
As you get closer to Thanksgiving Day, your attention should shift more towards food prep. Nobody enjoys the stress that comes with trying to cook the entire Thanksgiving feast on one day, so if you have any dishes that can be made a day or two before and then reheated before serving, get those done ahead of time!
2. Getting Your Kitchen and Appliances in Order
Since you’ll be spending much of your time in the kitchen on Thanksgiving, you’ll want to ensure that it and all of your appliances are ready to handle the load. There are two appliances in particular that you should focus on: your oven and your refrigerator. Since your oven is going to handle much of the cooking, you’ll want to make sure it is thoroughly cleaned beforehand. If the oven has a self-cleaning function, use that to make your job much easier! Your refrigerator also needs to be cleaned out so that it has maximum storage space available for food preparations and leftovers.
3. Making a Timeline for the Day
Even master entertainers can get overwhelmed at the sheer number of tasks that need to be done to make Thanksgiving go off without a hitch! One way to mitigate this problem is to write out a timeline for the entire day. It can be as detailed or as barebones as you feel comfortable with, but the point here is to give yourself a framework to follow throughout the day that will help you stay on task and have everything ready for your guests. It can also help you remember things that might otherwise get lost in the sometimes frenetic chaos of Thanksgiving Day cooking!