Monday, October 25, 2010

Holiday Prep: Countdown--one month until Thanksgiving!

Many more Countdown posts will be popping up much closer to Thanksgiving. But I wanted to give you just a quick list of things that can be done in advance, especially if you have the freezer space. Not HAVE to be done, just can. (for example, the first tip about potatoes...I think my sister Kathy would cry if I had pre-prepared mashed potatoes and she couldn't do them the day of.)If it's done in advance, that's one less thing to do on Thanksgiving.

-Potatoes can be mashed, bagged in gallon-size zip lock bags, and frozen. On T-day, they can be warmed in the microwave.
-Pie crusts can be made in advance and frozen. You can either roll them out on plastic wrap or wax paper, carefully slide them into large plastic bags, and freeze, or leave it un-rolled out in a big ball and thaw thoroughly closer to T-day before rolling and baking. They can even be molded in pie tins and frozen then, ready to fill and bake!
-If Turkeys are already on sale, you can take the chance now to buy the perfect one. Closer to the holiday, selection diminishes. Keep it frozen until the week before Thanksgiving.
-Do several checks for supplies. For a few ideas, see my Shopping List #1. (Set to arrive on November 1...stay tuned)
-Take a day to prep freezer meals besides Thanksgiving. Make a frozen lasagna, a pan of beef and bean enchiladas, or other non-turkey items. These things come in handy the day before Thanksgiving when you really don't feel like cooking, and can't afford delivery pizza.
-If you want to do homemade decorations, get going on it now.
-Make cornbread or buy a loaf of good bread (like ciabatta or sourdough), cut into cubes, and freeze in a large bag. That is, if you want to make your stuffing/dressing from scratch.

What other things can we do in advance? I'm sure you out there have many ideas that haven't even crossed my mind. Please share!

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