Last year I made many items for a Thanksgiving dinner a week early and froze them. Then, the day before Thanksgiving, we packed up a cooler and drove down to visit our daughter in Tennessee. The meal was almost complete, just a few things to make and heat up the next day. It was such a wonderful meal and so stress-free. On Thursday, we were able to go out and do some sightseeing before coming home to a wonderful meal of turkey, stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, vegetables, cranberry sauce and salad!
The turkey, gravy, stuffing, sweet potatoes and cranberry sauce were made ahead, turkey sliced and frozen separately. Before the meal, we made the mashed potatoes, vegetables and salad. Every thing tasted like it was made that day. It was such an easy and delicious way to enjoy Thanksgiving with family. With a store-bought pie, we were not missing anything!
Here are two recipes to make your day a little easier:
Sweet Potato Casserole with Streusel Topping
This can be made through step two and frozen. Defrost on Thanksgiving, top with streusel and bake.
* 4 cups sweet potato, cubed
* 1/2 cup white sugar
* 2 eggs, beaten
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 4 tablespoons butter, softened
* 1/2 cup milk
* 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
* 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
* 3 tablespoons butter, softened
* 1/2 cup chopped pecans
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Put sweet potatoes in a medium saucepan with water to cover. Cook over medium high heat until tender; drain and mash.
2. In a large bowl, mix together the sweet potatoes, sugar, eggs, salt, butter, milk and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Transfer to a 9x13-inch baking dish.
3. In medium bowl, mix the sugar and flour. Cut in the butter until the mixture is coarse. Stir in the pecans. Sprinkle the streusel mixture over the sweet potato mixture.
4. Bake in the preheated oven 30 minutes, or until the topping is lightly browned.
Adapted from Allrecipes.com
Garlic Mashed Potatoes
This can be made on Thanksgiving, but no need to wait while water boils and no draining.
• 4 pounds russet potatoes , peeled, quartered, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
• 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
• 12 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 teaspoon sugar
• 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
• 1/2 cup water
• Salt and pepper
1. Place cut potatoes in colander. Rinse under cold running water until water runs clear. Drain thoroughly.
2. Melt 4 tablespoons butter in Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook garlic and sugar, stirring often, until sticky and straw colored, 3 to 4 minutes. Add rinsed potatoes, 1 1/4 cups half-and-half, water, and 1 teaspoon salt to pot and stir to combine. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, covered and stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender and most of the liquid is absorbed, 25 to 30 minutes.
3. Off heat, add remaining butter to pot and mash with potato masher until smooth. Using rubber spatula, fold in remaining half-and-half until liquid is absorbed and potatoes are creamy. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.
Adapted from CookscountryTV.com