Things always seem to get extra crazy during the Holidays – it’s the combination of the cold weather that makes us hungrier, plus the constant family visits that increase the number of mouths to feed.
Sometimes things get out of control and you end up driving to the grocery store 3x a day – specially if you’re cooking for everybody. (we’ve already volunteered to cook for your Outer Banks Thanksgiving to give you some peace)
Here are a couple of tips to preserve both your kitchen and your mental health:
Prepare your Kitchen. Before things get crazy, organize your pantry, fridge and freezer, use things up (go all Iron Chef on it!) and make yourself aware of which holiday pantry basics you have or need.
Plan Ahead. Plan meals and make shopping lists, being mindful of how much to buy and serve for how many people. Use the chart on our holiday website to help you figure it out.
Choose Crowd-Friendly Recipes. If you will have guests staying in your home, don’t forget to plan for meals other than Thanksgiving Day. Choose hearty, satisfying, affordable recipes. Big-pot meals with self-serve condiments are ideal: chili, curry, red beans and rice, stew, etc.
Use the Freezer. Prepare big freezer-friendly recipes ahead so you can just heat and serve later. And don’t stop at lasagna and soup, breads and muffins and cookies freeze well, too.
Practice Makes Perfect. Trying out some new dishes? Find time to get a practice trial before the big days – you dont want to take your chances at a fancy pannacotta when there are 15 hungry guests to feed. 😉
Cook something for everyone. Chances are your guest list may include someone with a special diet need. Big holiday meals are actually perfect – since there are so many dishes, there is bound to be something for everyone. Vegetarians are people too 😉
So, what are you doing to get yourself, your home and your family prepared? Share your tips in the comments below. We can get through this together, right?
If you really need some help, our personal chef service is available for holiday parties – just so you have a Plan B!