Thanksgiving to-do list: What to buy and when for a stress-free meal

Thanksgiving, we’re often told, is mostly a matter of planning ahead: testing new recipes, buying pantry staples before a holiday rise in prices, doing a pre-poultry inventory of pans, platters, glassware and spices.

Now, if you’re the sort who actually begins Thanksgiving preparation a month out, feel free to stop here and commence with the proverbial pat. We commend you.

But if you’re like so many for whom planning means suddenly realizing Thanksgiving is only a week away, then read on. We’ve got you covered with tips and tactics for a stress-free meal:

A week before Thanksgiving:

► Buy your frozen turkey if you haven’t already done so. (And look for supermarket promotions that offer a free turkey with a minimum grocery purchase.)

► Buy pantry staples such as eggs, butter, sugar, oil, chicken stock and foil (don’t forget the foil!). If it’s your jam, purchase packaged items like cranberry sauce, instant mashed potatoes, or pies to save time and effort.

Thanksgiving recipe: Forget dinner rolls and serve Ina Garten’s brown butter skillet cornbread instead

food, thanksgiving to-do list: what to buy and when for a stress-free meal

Refrigerate pumpkin pie to prevent further cracking. Or cover with whipped cream and dust with cinnamon.

► Ask your guests to bring rolls, a side dish, dessert, or wine.

► Borrow any kitchen items you don’t have, like a good roasting pan or a big platter.

► Forget that five-spice roast duck stuffing you’ve dreamed of serving. With a week out, you’re going to rely on family recipes, guests (see above), and perhaps a dish from a national food magazine.

► Remember to look for supermarket deals online.

Thanksgiving made simple: Appetizer recipes that require 5 ingredients or less

Sunday before Thanksgiving:

► Clean out your refrigerator. You’re going to need to make room.

► Purchase cheese, vegetables, dairy and other perishables. Thoroughly dry and store vegetables; they’ll keep until Thanksgiving. Make cranberry sauce – it will “age” nicely in the refrigerator.

food, thanksgiving to-do list: what to buy and when for a stress-free meal

Green beans and other vegetables can be purchased four or five days before Thanksgiving; they’ll keep if properly dried and stored.

► The USDA recommends thawing your turkey in the refrigerator. Allow about 24 hours for every 4 to 5 pounds of bird, then begin thawing on the appropriate day.

Switch up your Thanksgiving spread: Try Molly Yeh’s roasted potatoes with paprika mayo

The Monday before Thanksgiving 

► Clean the house. Even if it’s not a top-to-bottom clean, get what you can out of the way now and save yourself the stress later.

The Tuesday before Thanksgiving 

► Prepare any vegetables that need chopping, thoroughly dry, then store in plastic baggies. Steamed vegetables can be made ahead, shocked in an ice water bath to stop cooking and set color, then dried and stored.

► Clean, dry and store salad greens.

► Make your salad dressing.

Thanksgiving recipe: Classic sausage stuffing to please everyone at your table

The day before Thanksgiving 

► Make a last run to the store for fresh herbs, lemons, ice and anything you forgot.

► If you’re brining the turkey, it’s time for the bird to hit the salt water.

► Assemble side dishes and casseroles, including stuffing and mashed potatoes, and refrigerate.

food, thanksgiving to-do list: what to buy and when for a stress-free meal

Stuffing to soggy? Cook a little longer while being careful not to burn.

► For mashed potatoes, add extra liquid so they’re the consistency of a thick milkshake. Place in a buttered baking dish and cover before refrigerating.

► If you’re making bread or rolls from scratch, start the dough now, then proof overnight.

► Set and decorate the table.

► Chill the wine.

Are you dealing with ‘turkey coma’? Why you may feel tired after eating on Thanksgiving

 Thanksgiving Day

► First thing, bake your bread or rolls.

► Next, begin roasting the turkey. A 15-pound turkey takes about 3 hours and 45 minutes in a 325-degree oven.

► While the bird roasts, cook your side dishes (including baking the mashed potatoes). Allow the dishes to come to room temperature.

► Let the turkey rest at least 30 minutes before carving to redistribute juices and make carving easier.

► While the bird rests, make gravy from pan drippings or heat packaged gravy in a saucepan.

food, thanksgiving to-do list: what to buy and when for a stress-free meal

It’s important to use a good sharp knife to carve a Thanksgiving turkey.

► Reheat side dishes in the microwave, in the oven, or on the stovetop.

► Dress the salad.

► Pour the wine, carve the turkey, and lay out the gravy, salad and side dishes.

► Eat and give thanks.

This article originally appeared on Reno Gazette Journal: Thanksgiving to-do list: What to buy and when for a stress-free meal

Breaking thailand news, thai news, thailand news Verified News Story Network