This week is Thanksgiving – if that didn’t stress you out enough, Thanksgiving is only two days away. Stay calm, if you aren’t hosting Thanksgiving you have nothing to worry about. Well, except the kind of wine you are bringing, and which pants are the stretchiest.
If you are hosting, you know that your kitchen is the hub for all things Thanksgiving. Aside from the typical – make your side dishes ahead of time and plan your menu, here are some kitchen tips that allow you to prep and prepare your Thanksgiving dinner with ease.
Issue: I am running out of room in my fridge.
Fix: Use a cooler to store sides, condiments, drinks, or produce. If you don’t have a cooler of your own, ask a guest to bring one over early. If you live in a cool climate, you can store the cooler in the garage to keep the ice from melting. If you live in an extra cool climate, you can store things like beer, wine, and spirits outside before your guests arrive to keep them chilled.
Issue: I don’t have pie weights.
Fix: Bakers typically recommend filling the bottom of your pie crust with weights to prevent your dough from puffing up, as crusts usually do. Most individuals don’t have weights set aside for pie making and if that is the case for you – there are substitutions. You can use pennies, dried beans, uncooked rice, rocks, washers, or even screws. In any case, make sure to line your pie curst with tin foil or parchment paper.
Issue: I don’t have a cookbook stand.
Fix: Seeing as though lots of Thanksgiving main dishes, side dishes and drinks are made specifically for Thanksgiving, you are often following a recipe. Whether it is a 50-year-old flash card from your grandma or a printed piece of paper from recipe.com it takes up a lot of valuable counter space. If you don’t have a stand, the paper or the book gets spilled on, covered up and takes up space. Consider taping up your recipe onto your cabinet to have it at eye level and keep it out of the way. This also aids in keeping organized if you aren’t the only cook in the kitchen or you are making more than one dish. If you are working out of a cookbook open the cabinet and prop the book up against glasses or bowls.
Issue: My guests are asking to help.
Fix: What a shame, a considerate house guest. All jokes aside – it is very appreciated to have a guest offer to help as you run around the kitchen. Set aside things for guests to do, for example, drinks. Ask them to open wine, ask for drink orders, mix drinks, fill water glasses. Or ask them to cut pie, set the table, entertain children, hang coats, do dishes, cut the turkey, find serving utensils etc. If you don’t have to do it, allow someone else.
Issue: I am low on counter space.
Fix: There is always a point in which every Thanksgiving chef runs out of counter space. If this happens consider removing things like the blender, deep fryer, air cooker, griddle from your counter and putting them in the garage or the basement. This will not only clear space but it will also make your kitchen seem cleaner and less cluttered. If this seems to be an issue every year consider designing a layout with more kitchen countertop or adding an island. If you contact us we can set you up with a design consultation.
Thankfully, we design kitchens and cabinets to be used and we choose partners that are up for the challenge of the busiest of kitchens.