This Thanksgiving: Let the Littles Help

ava-cooking

While you are preparing your traditional (or nontraditional) Thanksgiving dinner, please let the little ones help. I know that having extra/small hands in the kitchen can be more of a hassle than an actual help to adults, but it means so much more than simply eating dinner to them. When we let children help us in the kitchen we help them feel connected to the world.

So many of our holidays and traditions are centered around food. Having our kids in the kitchen while we prepare these foods not only teaches them what our own family traditions are, but it is the beginning step to teaching the kids how to prepare these traditional foods. I don’t even remember learning to cook because it was a very gradual process. My sisters and I were always in the kitchen, watching… then helping…then helping a little more…. then doing the cooking ourselves. Having kids help also supports our relationships with them and helps them feel like an important part of the family.

So, I ask you this Thanksgiving: Please let the littles help!

TurkeyTip Tuesday: Buy/Order Your Bird

It’s already November 1st. Thanksgiving is rapidly approaching, and you don’t want to be left holding the (empty) bag. Now is the time to purchase and freeze your turkey OR order your turkey, depending on how your supermarket does things. If you go the purchase early and freeze route, be sure to allow enough time to safely thaw your turkey in the refrigerator later.

Foodie Friday: November Menu

While September seemed to drag on, October has flown by! I feel like I just went to bed on October 1 and woke up on October 28. But I love November. I wish the weather around here would cool down so that it felt like November is supposed to feel, but I guess this heat will have to do. I feel like this November is going to be one of my best yet!

Here’s my November menu:

november-2016-menu

And here’s a printable version:

november-2016-menu

Here’s wishing you and your family the happiest of Thanksgivings! Enjoy the menu!

Turkey Tip Tuesday: The Thaw

It is so important to properly and safely thaw your turkey. AND it takes planning! The two main methods are refrigerator thawing and cold water thawing.

Refrigerator thawing takes more time, but is very easy to do. Just place your turkey (still in the wrapper) in the fridge, breast up and allow 1 day for every 4 pounds of weight.

Cold water thawing requires a little more attention. Place turkey (still in wrapper) breast down in the sink or a large tub. Cover with cold water. Change water every 30 minutes to make sure the surface doesn’t get too warm, which can cause a dangerous growth of bacteria. Allow 30 minutes thaw time per pound of turkey.

 

This is my dad carving last year’s turkey. It was delicious!

Turkey Tip Tuesday: Seasoning

Seasoning your turkey correctly makes all the difference! I love using rosemary, thyme, sage and citrus. I soften some butter, chop my herbs, zest my citrus and mix it all together with plenty of salt and pepper. Then I slather the butter all over the bird that I have patted dry with paper towels (inside and out). I slather the butter under the skinĀ  too. Then I stuff the cavity with more herbs and my citrus fruit that I already used for zest. YUM!

 

It’s all about the butter.

Turkey Tip Tuesday: How Much Turkey?

 

A good rule of thumb for deciding what size turkey to buy is one pound per person. This won’t actually be one pound of meat per person, because there’s a lot of other stuff in there adding weight. AND there will still be plenty of leftovers.

If you’re still not sure how much to buy, try the Butterball calculator. It’s fun!