Any holiday celebration is incomplete without Cooking & Baking, I'm sure all of you have started gathering and bookmarking favorite recipes for your family dinners! But, after entertaining guests for the last two weekends, and cleaning up my precious Enclume Pot Rack, I suddenly realized that though I have the recipe list ready, I don't think I have all the kitchen tools and utensils needed for the immense amount of holiday cooking that I have planned! Funny, as most of us don't think about the cooking tools right until we actually start executing a recipe! Most of the times makeshift-tools will work, but what about those large family-size pots and pans? or the holiday Bundt-cake pans? Is your Kitchen ready for some serious Holiday Cooking and Baking? [img source - Williams Sonoma]
As baking would undoubtedly be a primary contender to holiday preparations, its imperative to make sure you have all the tools and kitchen bake-ware to make your baking as stress-free as possible. I for one, need to get a new Bundt-Cake Pan, and also a simple baking Thermometer. In fact, a simple search online will get you several deals on professional cookware including cookie sheets, cake pans, measuring spoons, muffins cups, cutters, scrapers, chafers, enclume pot racks and more! Make sure you have different cookie-cutters for all your fancy Christmas cookies, and also some fancy serving trays & tableware to serve those in!
Cookware and Tableware
My biggest concern when I have to prepare a dinner for a large group is what to cook it in! Dividing the same curry into two non-stick pans will mostly never work, so make sure you have cookware large enough to cook your entire dish. Ensure that you have all your kitchen equipment in order - from casseroles to mashed potatoes, and soups and stews to serving bowls and roasting pans, everything needs to be co-ordinated, so you don't go scrambling at the last minute! And if you are going to use your ancient china, wash and clean them a few days ahead so it sparkles. Buy table linens and matching napkins as well as serving ware, as holidays are special, and a little pre-planning will keep you more relaxed on the main day. I have added a new food-processor, and perhaps a Chocolate Fondue set to my Go-Get-it list already! And perhaps some new Fall dinner set won't be bad either:)
Dinnerware & China
When it comes to a party, your dinnerware is as important as your food, and White is mostly the preferred choice at holiday dinners, mostly because they bring out the color of the food. But these days, there are a lot of designer options available. Choose a theme, and find a matching Dinner set that goes with your linen and china. Autumn themes, leaf-shapes and fall-colors are greatly flavored at such occasions, so choose what pleases you the most, as there are tonnes of options to select from! And again, artistic enclume potracks will be a perfect fit too!
Wines & Glassware
No festive dinner is complete without a fancy wine, a fitting festive Cappucino or a Fruit Cocktail! This is the time to splurge on the expensive wine labels, and choose nice and fruity champagnes. If you love making cocktails, you'd know its important to serve them in a fancy way too! Make sure your buffet table has enough of glassware, depending on what you plan to serve. I have 2 sets of wine goblets, and it really doesn't look impressive when you use two incomplete sets to serve different guests at the same party. So I'm adding some new wine glasses and some cute coffee mugs to my shopping list!
Holidays are all about family gatherings, a few times in the year when everyone gets together and spends some quality time, enjoying great food and chatting and reliving pleasant memories over a cup of coffee. As food is one of the biggest contributors to a successful Holiday gathering, one should start planning ahead, not just about what you are going to cook, but also how, when and where! Take some time see if your Kitchen is ready for the holiday season, and make sure you have all you need to impress your guests on the big day. Remember, the plate that you cook and serve the food in, is as important as how your food tastes!
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