Woman in a bright pink top and feathery cap juggling several balls in the air.

Itinerary for a Big Meal

Whenever I have to cook dinner for a large group or just have a lot of moving parts, I like to write up an itinerary. Depending on how involved the big meal is, I may schedule in specific times and overlapping dishes (read: juggling). I dug up last year’s Thanksgiving itinerary, so, here you are, the method to my madness for all your inspiration!

Turkey Day 2018: Ready, Set, Go!


9:00–9:30 – Dry brine the turkey.


17:15–17:45 – Make cranberry apple sauce (use small pot).


(I did Thanksgiving a day late; also, I use military time because I am, unashamedly, a nerd.)
9:00 – Unwrap the turkey, and leave out basting butter to soften.
13:30–15:00 – Make chocolate cake and cream cheese frosting (for the side; use honey instead of vanilla and cut sugar a bit to compensate).
15:00–16:00 – Take out turkey to rest for 1 hour. Prep bottom of pan with carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and chicken stock. See recipe.
16:00 – Put the turkey in the oven (use roaster).
16:00–16:25 – Pick out serving dishes.
16:25–16:30 – Melt butter for basting (use small pot), turn temperature to 325, flip turkey, baste, and return to oven.
16:30–17:00 – Make beet and cabbage salad (use alum bowl).
17:00 – Toss beet salad, and remove cranberry apple sauce from the fridge.
17:00–18:00 – Prep the sweet potatoes (use the long pyrex).
18:00 – Toss beet salad, and roast the sweet potatoes (use the long pyrex).
18:15 – Check turkey and remove lid to brown it up.
18:30–18:45 – Make gravy thickener (use small pot) (5 minutes).
19:00 – Toss beet salad, and remove sweet potatoes.
18:45 – Remove turkey and let it rest.
18:45–19:00 – Make gravy (use small pot).
19:15–19:30 – Have husb carve the turkey.

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