Now that I've bombarded you with delicious-sounding Thanksgiving recipes, it's only fair to share my tips for choosing the perfect holiday menu. It's the second week in November, so the time to think about this stuff is now!
- Start by choosing a theme. Traditional, bold and flavorful, Southern: the possibilities for a menu's theme are endless!
- Search a wide range of sources for recipes that match your theme.
- Know your guests. If one friend is allergic to peanuts and another is a vegetarian, respect these dietary needs by serving dishes that everyone can enjoy.
- Several vegetarians in attendance? Think about serving a vegetable entree that's a hearty alternative to turkey.
For the rest of my suggestions, keep reading.
- Combine new dishes with classic favorites.
- Think about the texture and color of the food. The items should be pleasing to the eye and palate.
- Avoid overusing a single ingredient. If you make wild rice stuffing with goat cheese, don't serve a salad with goat cheese or goat cheese-stuffed mushrooms.
- Look at the cooking technique of each dish. Because the turkey will occupy the oven, make sure some items can be made on the stove, grill, or in a slow cooker.
- Choose recipes that make sense and use seasonal ingredients.
- Don't go overboard on the appetizers. Serve enough to tide guests over, but leave plenty of room for the main meal.
- Consider your kitchen space and cooking gadgets. If you don't have a food processor, stay away from a pumpkin soup that must be pureed.
- Ask your family to get involved!
How do you select a Thanksgiving menu? What will you be serving this year?