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Help me plan my Thanksgiving Extravaganza

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Help me out. I usually take the day off the day before but can't this time. I have somewhere between 10 and 13 people coming. 4 are house guests and the rest hang out intermittently throughout the holiday weekend. So ideas for leftovers and the rest of the weekend are helpful too.

What can I do ahead?

Here is the menu:
Turkey (can't be done ahead, p/u from butcher day before then soaked in salt and water overnight)
Southern Comfort Sweet Potatoes
Cheesy Crock Pot Corn
Mashed potatoes
Good looking green veggie from market
Dinner rolls
Apple Pie
Pumpkin Pie
And maybe if I place an order in time for poppy seed (these are really meant for brunch stuff over the weekend): Poppy seed rolls and Slovak nut bread. I'm almost sure this needs to be done either the weekend before, or the weekend after.

Oh and bread! I need bread for sandwiches and breakfast. My bread machine is going to get a work out.

If there is enough turkey left over we make a turkey tetrazzini. Otherwise, I'm thinking I might like to attempt a soup with the bones the next day.

Am I crazy? All of this is done practically by scratch. Dh does the mashed potatoes because tools are involved (i.e. his potato ricer and the mixer) This is one of the few times of the year where I can go crazy in the kitchen because of all the babysitters present. However, I would like to spend a little time kicking back with a glass of wine while stuff is cooking.
post #2 of 4
I think that you should be able to make the pies a couple days ahead of time and they should keep. Maybe make them on Tuesday night.

Instead of doing stuffing, I would recommend doing a dressing. You can make this ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you are ready to bake it. I know there are some health concern about cooking the stuffing inside the bird, and this gets rid of those.

Also, I think that you should be able to make mashed potatoes ahead of time and reheat. If you don't want to do that, then there are tons of crock-pot mashed potato recipes...just do a quick google.

Hope this helps!
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thanks. My e-mail was off-line for awhile so I just got the reply. Yes, I think we're going to do mashed potatoes this weekend. It will be kind of nice since I think we can do them twice baked style
post #4 of 4
Are you going to stuff the stuffing inside the bird? If not, you could prepapre that i advance in an oven proof dish and keep in the fridge...pop it in the oven for 20min when ready.

I would also prepare the salad the day before and leave it covered with a damp paper towle in the fridge. I like to premix my dressing in a tupperware container as well. Try this: 3prts olive oil to 1-2 prts blasamic vinegar, mince a clove of garlic and then add some salt & pepper, YUM 9let it marinate for a day or so)

You could peel the potatoes and leave them in cool water the day before.

All of the pies could be done in the days before as well.

I find it helpful to have a small list of what I want to make and I try and estimate the time I should startto cook A, B or C etc. I tend to get a little flustered when cooking for big groups, so having some pre-done organization helps me wonders....and a glass of wine of course
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