Cooking Essentials for the Christmas Perfect Dinner
What are the two things you run out for at the last minute when preparing Christmas dinner? Seasonings and utensils. Today I will address the essentials you need to be sure you have on hand when cooking Christmas dinner.
No one wants to have to make a last minute substitution because they forgot something at the store. When you are making a list of the grocery items you need, don’t forget the utensils. Unless you have a large family, most people don’t use every pot, pan and spatula in their kitchen unless it is Christmas.
To save on storage space and money, look for items that are disposable. You don’t need to purchase a new 20-piece cookware set for an additional ham. That is why the list of food and the list of utensils go together. Here are a few examples of what you might need to buy:
- Roasting pans (turkey, ham)
- Side dish pans (square aluminum pans)
- Serving utensils
- Cake pans (can be non-disposable – you may use them later)
- Trash bags (not a utensil or cookware but a necessary item for cleanup)
- Thermometer (meat, candy)
- Mixing bowls
It seems like a long list but not really. Instead of using all of your baking pans and washing them repeatedly, it is easier to cook sides and meats in disposable aluminum pans. They hold up well when cooking and can be thrown away afterwards. If a family wants to take home leftovers, you can use the extra pans you have left. This gives them one container to store their “take home” treats and a way to warm them up also.
You may have enough silverware for a service for four or six, but 26 people are out of the question. At party supply stores, they sell Christmas plastic ware that resembles real silverware. Your family won’t mind and your holiday table will still look elegant.
Anyone preparing food like meat needs a meat thermometer. Turkey takes a long time to cook and you want to be sure it is cooked throughout. A meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh will let you know when the turkey is done. Even with pop-up meters in the turkey, always check the internal temperature yourself.
A lot goes into making Christmas dinner special for family and friends. Avoid the last minute drive to the store or a sink full of dishes. Purchase what essentials you need beforehand.