For your first Thanksgiving don't worry about decorating your entire house, instead make sure everything is CLEAN and light a fire if you have a fire place. Focus your energy on creating a gorgeous table setting. Start looking for table decor now — a few weeks before the dinner — and set the table several days before Thanksgiving. Cover the table with a deep chocolate brown cloth. On top of this, add a colorful red and orange runner, and matching placemats. For a beautiful yet affordable centerpiece, arrange collected, dried leaves, pumpkins, and dried wheat. Simple, shiny plates put attention on the food and not the dinnerware. Light candles and fill vases with autumn colored flowers. Invest in a large turkey serving platter, festive napkin rings, and a wine glass set complete with water glasses.
Since this is your first Thanksgiving, don't go overboard offering guests an open bar. Instead, serve beer, wine, champagne, and one specialty cocktail. A few weeks before the dinner, head to your local wine shop or Trader Joe's. Talk with the owner or the store's sommelier. Explain that you are hosting your first Thanksgiving and want a couple of bottles of wine for dinner. Tell him how many people will be in attendance and what you are serving. Zinfandel and Beaujolais pair wonderfully with turkey and a good bottle of bubbly makes for a festive cocktail with appetizers. If you prefer to pour white wine serve a Chenin Blanc, Riesling, or Gewurtraminer.
Have lots of sparkling and still water on hand, and be sure to set water glasses on the table. If you know your dad only drinks Tanqueray and tonic, tell him to bring his own supplies. Otherwise offer guests a dark and stormy to sip while they wait for the turkey to cook. Get the recipe to this classic cocktail, just read more
After a classic Thanksgiving meal, offer guests two delicious dessert options. The best thing about dessert dishes is that they can usually be made in advance. Instead of serving a pie, make a pumpkin spice roll cake with cream cheese filling. Get help from the store and use a box cake mix; no one will know the difference. Make a black bottom chocolate pie for those guests who want a more decadent dessert. To save time, purchase a chocolate cookie crumb crust when making this pie. To look at the recipes for these delicious desserts, read more
The most important thing to remember when planning your first Thanksgiving is to stay calm. Really, Thanksgiving is just like any old dinner party, but with the menu already established. Don't try to do everything yourself and do get help from the store. Start by creating a massive grocery list of everything you will need. Next, figure out a cooking timeline and schedule. Read each of the following recipes carefully.
For appetizers, create a cheese platter of three cheeses — a soft, spreadable goat, a pungent cheddar, and a creamy blue — with dried fruit, nuts, and crackers. Prosciutto wrapped figs are a delicious accompaniment. Don't take on too many dishes for the main meal. Serve the classics: roast turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and a green salad. Purchase a store bought cranberry sauce and gravy, and if desired, ask a trusted friend who enjoys cooking to make a few more sides.
To take a look at these simple yet delicious recipes, read more
To help you prepare the most perfect Thanksgiving dinner ever, I will be planning not one, but three fabulous Thanksgiving parties throughout the month of November!
To start things off, I'm creating a plan for those of you who are hosting your first Thanksgiving dinner. I planned and cooked my first Thanksgiving dinner the fall after I graduated from college. While it had plenty of crises, it was a fabulous success! By following my detailed plan of ideas yours too can be a memorable event. Let's start by making a simple, but gorgegous invitation. To see how I made the glittery one at right, read more