Time really flies during the holidays. You wake up and have your first cup of coffee and before you know it the kids are asking, "What's for dinner?"
No matter what day of the week in December, there's always a fantastically long list of to dos. And, matter what the chores of the day may bring, you'll always need to feed the family and perhaps a few guests every evening.
Here are a few ways to make cooking easier when prepping for a holiday meal.
Plan out the menu for the week. Nothing wastes more time than standing around trying to figure out what to make for dinner. Shop on a Sunday for all your meals through out the week. This is also a great way to save money. You'll be less likely to impulse buy, if you go in shopping with specific meals in mind. Don't forget the coupons. There are plenty of them this time of year!
Wash and cut vegetables as soon as your bring them home from the store. You'll be more likely to use them, and cut down on prepping time as well. Think ahead to the meals you have planned for the week, so you know how to chop each vegetable. This is a great task for a tween who loves helping in the kitchen.
Don't be afraid of frozen appetizers. Many stores now have a variety of brands that are tasty and healthful. A few options will make sure that you are never caught off guard by drop in visitors. You'll always have a nice warm treat to serve. Go ahead and take the credit, saying you made it yourself. A stash of mixed nuts and tea cookies is also a great idea.
Make good use of your slow cooker. It is great for cooking big batches of chilis, stews, or soups. Be adventurous and cook a whole roast or chicken. Whatever it is that you are making, you can be sure that it will feed a crowd. I love cooking a roast because I know I'll have dinner for that night, and probably the next night as well. Nothing like good leftovers to save some time - and money!
Moms, what are your favorite time-saving methods in the kitchen?