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Tips for a successful Thanksgiving dinner

November 21, 2016
Once Halloween is over, the holidays move in. Not only is it time to start thinking about Christmas gifts, but don't forget there's still another holiday patiently waiting its turn: Thanksgiving Day. The holidays can be a stressful time for many people, but it is also the most wonderful time of the year (cue early Christmas music). So how does a family survive a successful Thanksgiving dinner together? Here are a few tips to help you throw a successful Thanksgiving dinner at your home this holiday season.

Plan your menu
A large holiday like Thanksgiving Day is not the right time to wing it when it comes to cooking dinner. Thanksgiving dinner is a big deal for guests, so make sure you spend a significant amount of time planning what you'll eat, what you'll drink, and doing the grocery shopping. The longer you wait, the busier the stores will be, so plan ahead and do your shopping in advance as well. If you have guests with special food allergies or dietary restrictions, take those into account and if you plan on trying out a new Thanksgiving dinner dish, maybe try it out on the family the week before first so there are no surprises on Thanksgiving Day.

Do prep work
Thanksgiving dinner prep is always easier when you can do prep work beforehand. Things like salads, rolls, and desserts can be made before Thanksgiving Day to save time. If you can, create a conveyer belt of dishes that need to go in the oven. Prepare the dish and store it in the refrigerator until it's time for it to go in the oven to ensure everything gets baked on time.

Get some help
Holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving Day can be overwhelming for the host to do all of the work themselves. Enlist some help from your family to do the small tasks that pile on and may seem simple, but in the long run will make the biggest difference. Have them help set the table, prepare drinks, light candles, pull things out of the oven, etc. Thanksgiving dinner will go much smoother if you do not try to take it on all by yourself.

Start with fun appetizers
Everyone tends to get hungry quickly on Thanksgiving Day and the anticipation for Thanksgiving dinner can really make someone extra hungry. Try out some fun, light appetizers, like a veggie tray where the veggies are arranged in the shape of a turkey.

Relax and have fun
It may seem like common sense, but the holidays are a time to enjoy time with family, including on Thanksgiving Day. Don't let the stress of preparing Thanksgiving dinner distract you from the joy of the holiday and remember to sit down, relax, and enjoy time with family and friends. The dishes can wait, they will be there after the game. Enjoy your time with your guests to really cap off a successful Thanksgiving Day dinner. Read More...

Unique ways to prepare Thanksgiving leftovers

November 21, 2016
Tis the season for not only family, friends, gift giving, but lots of great food, which means lots of great leftovers. Thanksgiving food is great and all, but the party really starts when you have Thanksgiving leftovers for days. Plain leftovers are fine; you can relive that memorable Thanksgiving Day when you had all of the delicious food. But there are great ways to eat Thanksgiving leftovers that mix it up a little bit. Here are a few ideas on how to maximize your Thanksgiving leftovers.

Turkey Soup
Don't throw away that turkey carcass on Thanksgiving Day. Save the carcass to use the day after to make a delicious turkey soup broth. It's very simple. Put the carcass into a pot and fill the pot with enough water to cover the carcass by two inches, then bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer for about 2-3 hours, then strain through a fine mesh strainer into containers. You can add leftover turkey to the soup as well as other ingredients like vegetables to make more of a soup rather than just a broth. It's one of the best ways to use Thanksgiving leftovers.

Crispy Mashed Potatoes and Stuffing Patties
Ingredients
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tblsp finely chopped onion
¼ tsp pepper
2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
2 cups leftover chopped cooked turkey
2 cups leftover stuffing
2 tblsp butter
2 tblsp canola oil

Instructions
Whisk together the eggs, onions, and pepper. Stir in potatoes, turkey, and stuffing. In a large skillet, heat the butter and oil. Working in batches, drop potato mixture by ½ cup fulls into pan, press to flatten. Fry 4-5 minutes on each side. Drain with paper towels. What a great way to use up some leftover Thanksgiving food you have lying around.

Stuffing Waffles
What better way to finish up some Thanksgiving leftovers by throwing them onto a waffle iron? Take some leftover stuffing and grill it on a waffle iron. The pockets made from the iron will be perfect for catching gravy or even syrup if you'd like. Sounds like a great Thanksgiving food breakfast to us.

Stuffing Waffle Sandwich
Let's take the stuffing waffle to the next level, because obviously it wasn't brilliant enough. Take that leftover Thanksgiving turkey and throw it on top of your waffle, followed by a fried egg and some cheesy gravy. Talk about a fantastic open faced Thanksgiving food sandwich.

The only thing better than Thanksgiving food are the Thanksgiving leftovers that come from the grand feast. Don't let those leftovers go to waste; get creative with how you recreate and heat them up. Read More...




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