Holidays can be stressful, especially when you're hosting. My book Cups, Sticks and Nibbles really focuses on ways to gain confidence with your inner hostess and the following are my favorite 5 tips for hosting Thanksgiving! Use them, enjoy them,and have a warm and flawless holiday season!
1) Mirepoix (diced carrot, onion and celery): for the turkey stuffing and other starts to side dishes can be found pre-chopped at most Supermarkets. This is a time and space saver in the fridge and with your counter space!
2) Add fresh Thyme and lemon to turkey cavity for flavor AND fragrance. This will amplify all the other flavors of the dishes you serve, bring out acidity and lightness, and the hint of lemon throughout the kitchen.
3) Electric carvers are worth the extra money! After prepping and slicing, lifting heavy pans all day the last thing you want to do is slice the turkey as soon as everything is in place. Take this step to avoid long cutting times.
4) Cook "soup, stuffing, cranberry sauce" in advance! Focus on the "turkey" day of. Think of timing when hosting this holiday season, the 'main event' is going to take a lot of time to cook. Side dishes can be put together and cooked and reheated as your bird is resting before slicing. Remove side dishes right after slicing the turkey, everything will be warm and ready for serving.
5) Dessert! Keep it simple! Buy or ask others to bring since you are hosting! Yes, it is okay to actually ask people to bring things.