The significance of Thanksgiving does not need any emphasis for any of us. So it is always better to prepare as much as you possibly can for a memorable thanksgiving dinner. There are a number of dishes that can be prepared well before the big day. So let’s explore what a party plannercan make in advance of the incoming day in New Jersey.
Turkey, Gravy and Sides
Most chefs unite on the fact that items such as turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing should be prepared absolutely from scratch on the day. Doing some of the cooking beforehand saves you from the last-minute preparation stress. Although the work shouldn’t be done that early to force you to put the side dishes in freezing, as it potentially destroys their freshness and texture.
Prepare turkey stock first
Both turkey stock and chicken are great to go with. Stock is particularly required in excess amount for gravy, for keeping the sliced turkey warm, to refresh dressings, and for pans deglazing. Also that turkey stock freezes really well.
Release the turkey from the package a couple of days in advance before use
Also use a dry brine or a simple salt solution to make it go well in the roasting pan on the actual day.
Just like other cooked potatoes, mashed ones also do not freeze well
Yes, mashed potatoes refrigerate easy by mixing them with butter, chives, and sour cream. Learn how to bake them properly like a casserole. The result of a good baking will be a smooth and dense texture.
Many dressings and stuffings can get ready in advance
If the stuffings are quite moist, it can be cooked way before the day and then reheated similarly to any other casserole without affecting the true essence of its flavor. See the container is covered tightly during reheating, add tablespoons of stock as required to keep the dish smooth and utterly pleasant in smell. Do note that drier dressings and stuffings shouldn’t follow the same approach of cooking in advance, as reheating tends to dry them out even more and losing their original texture and taste.
Go for a traditional cranberry sauce a week prior, if possible
Cover the sauce properly and keep it in the fridge. Although avoid trying to freeze it, as the rigidness will leave the sauce no good but with only broken structure. However if not possible, you can always prepare raw cranberry sauce just a day or a couple in advance.
If salad is in your to-do list, wash salad greens and prepare vinaigrette three days prior
Wash and rinse the greens thoroughly, cover them loosely with paper towels, keep in a plastic bag and keep the bag in the crisper. On the other hand, if you prefer a butternut squash, then do it by peeling, seeding and cubing it. Other options include peeling and cutting carrots, beets and rutabaga, and cauliflower florets.
The secret to making desserts days prior to thanksgiving or any other occasion is to find out recipes that work best by getting baked or cooked ahead of the day. There are dishes that tastes the same or even better when prepared few days in advance as compared to the freshness and taste on the day when made.
Tortes and chocolate cakes stay up well
Besides these, the other contenders are puddings, flans, parfaits, mousses, cheesecakes, sticky gingerbread cakes, etc. The basic principle states that if you want the dessert to be served happily chilled, then place it in a fridge a day or two before the serving.
Generally, the cakes that are hard and dense tends to maintain their structure better and longer as compared to light and soft cakes
Using frost, fondant or any type of syrupy glaze can come as a potential preservative, thus, keeping the shape and freshness of the dessert intact longer.