How to Host a Thanksgiving Dinner

Oct 02, 2017

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The countdown to Thanksgiving is on. Whether you prefer stuffed turkey or tofu, mashed potatoes or roasted, there’s really something for everyone on the table. And from table decorations to wine, there’s a lot to consider when you host Thanksgiving dinner. Timbercreek has a few great tips to help you host a memorable holiday meal this Thanksgiving.

Timing

Pretty much every list of how to host thanksgiving starts (and finishes) with timing. Not to be pessimistic, but if the food isn’t ready for dinner, you’re doomed. If you’re serving roast Turkey (or even Tofurkey), timing is everything. The Turkey itself takes hours depending on weight. And then there’s all the side dishes -- we’re talking everything from mashed potatoes to sweet potato casserole, cranberry sauce, carrots, green bean casserole, corn, and/or squash. If you opt for scalloped potatoes or gratin potatoes you’ll add a whole other level of complexity to your timing. And then there’s the pumpkin pie. Our best advice is to carefully plan your menu and start cooking early -- the previous day if possible. Make anything you can before the day. Oh, and accept all the help you can get! If someone asks to contribute, ask them to make one of the side dishes.

Table Setting and Decoration

Gourds, gourds, gourds. While knobby and odd looking, these little suckers are sensationally seasonal. You can find them everywhere from grocery stores to Walmart in October. They are the perfect decorative accent for Thanksgiving. Pair them with few well placed candles, some colorful placemats and napkins. If your guests offer to bring something, ask for seasonal flower arrangements.

Wine

Red wine is made for Thanksgiving. While winefolly.com includes a rose and a sparkling white on their list of best wines for Thanksgiving, reds overwhelmingly win the day. Look for Beaujolais, Granache, Carignan, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese. You can’t lose when you go with red.

Beer

Stouts and heavier IPAs are perfect for Thanksgiving. They tend to be “warmer” and more substantial. Many craft breweries also offer seasonal beers to celebrate Thanksgiving. Give Great Lakes Brewery’s Pumpkin Ale a try.

Seasonal Teas and Coffee

You have to have options for the non-drinkers in the house. We’re not talking about Budweiser Prohibition. Go with seasonal teas and/or coffee: i.e. pumpkin spice, chai, and fruit teas with a medley of nuts or cinnamon, in addition to classic chai pumpkin lattes or flavoured coffees. Learn more here.

Fire Smell

There’s nothing like the smell of wood fire. It might be the most popular smell of fall. If you have a fireplace, light it up this Thanksgiving. If you’re one of many who don’t, try collecting some pine needles, dry leaves, or pick up some cedar incense or (lightly) scented candles. There’s nothing like walking into a home or apartment and getting hit with the aroma of Fall.

Conversation Topics

Good conversation makes any celebration better. It can be tricky to avoid the “So what do you do for work” or “How ‘bout that Trump” small talk. If your celebration involves guests who are strangers to each other this year, look at converstationstarters.com

Timbercreek hopes this article helps you make the most of Thanksgiving this fall. For more information about Timbercreek Communities in your city, please visit our website.

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