Ah- the family, the fun, the FOOD of the holidays! Spending time in the kitchen preparing the meal doesn’t have to be stressful and lonely; with these tips you can have plenty of cooks in the kitchen while keeping safety top-of-mind. Or, if you prefer to go solo, use these tips to help maximize your time and space while cooking.
- Start your easier recipes first and store them until you’re ready to cook them. Most uncooked dishes can wait at room temperature for up to 4 hours.
- Set up workspaces for each recipe if multiple have to be started at once. Like a potato-peeling station, veggie-chopping station, veggie-washing station, etc.
- Use warnings for hot pans and knives while moving through the kitchen with multiple people.
- If you have a very large turkey, enlist help to move it in and out of the oven. You can have someone open and close the oven for you, or have another person hold the other side of the roasting pan.
- Clean as you go! Tidying up your kitchen between dishes helps speed the prep process and prevents accidents with overcrowded countertops.
- If you’re frying your turkey, be sure you measure the amount of oil you need first by placing your turkey in the fryer pot and measuring the amount to fill with water. Fryer oil is extremely flammable and overflow when dropping the turkey in can cause severe injury or damage.
- Set timers to prevent burning or undercooking your food! You can get cheap timers at the dollar store- just label them with a sharpie for each recipe.
- Plan ahead so you’re prepared the day-of. Knowing when each dish should be started, or who will be making each dish can prevent rushing in a full kitchen!
- Stovetop fires can be smothered with a pan lid or baking soda. Do not use water or other liquid to extinguish stove fires- splashing will spread the fire!
This Thanksgiving, share the joy of cooking the meal while staying safe, so invite the family to join in making the dinner! You’ll be making memories together and making the day less stressful, all while staying safe.
For safety tips outside of the kitchen, check out this article for your Thanksgiving gathering: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/11/18/safety-tips-for-celebrating-thanksgiving-during-covid-19-pandemic.html