Now that October is behind us, I’m ready to start planning my Thanksgiving menu. I’ve already thought about it a bit, and I have a rough idea of what I’ll be making.
Maybe I should back up a little. Many years ago, Dan and I decided to do an every-other-year thing with the holidays. That means that this year is my mom’s year for Thanksgiving. Which means that I cook on those years. The last time I did Thanksgiving we had a Mexican theme. I made turkey mole with a bunch of Mexican inspired side dishes. If you want to look back at some of my past menus, I update them here.
This year, I’ll be doing a Pacific Northwest theme for Thanksgiving. And, this planning made me think that I would try to give some tips for making Thanksgiving easier and, I’ll share some of my favorite tasty treats for T-day.
Here are a couple of recipes that I’ve already posted that would be great for Thanksgiving:
And, you can use up some of those leftovers with this Veggie Frittata, just add some leftover turkey, roasted carrots, or green beans instead of the corn and zucchini.
- You don’t have to make everything you serve. There’s nothing wrong with a store-bought veggie tray (just make a fresh dip as the ones that come with the tray are often tasteless). Or, make a nice plate of crackers and hummus with some fruits and veggies- all store-bought and minimal work. Or, start with a store-bought item and add to it- like Mrs. Cubbison’s stuffing with added fruits, veggies, and store-bought broth.
- Make as much before hand as possible. Like the pumpkin pie. Homemade pumpkin pie is easy, and so much tastier than store-bought. But, there’s nothing wrong with store-bought whipped cream. Several side dishes can be made before hand and reheated. Like the Barley dish above. And, don’t forget the power of a cold or room temperature side dish- how awesome that you can pull it out of the ‘fridge and serve it without doing anything last second!
- Make a menu and plan out how long each item will take. I always write down when the dish needs to be started or needs to be popped in the oven. That way I don’t have to think about it on T-day.
- Ok, this one is my personal belief about mashed potatoes, but, why do people spend so much time peeling potatoes for mashed potatoes when they are so much easier, healthier, and (in my opinion) tastier with the peels on?
- And, my final tip of the day, this is not the time to try a bunch of new dishes. I usually try one new thing and the rest are all my go-to dishes. In fact, you don’t have to try any new dishes if you don’t want to.