There isn’t anything typical about 2020. Thanksgiving won’t be either. It might even be better than normal.
Health officials are also urging us to change how we celebrate Thanksgiving. Instead of large family gatherings, opt for a feast with just your household, they advise.
So maybe you won’t be traveling to grandma’s house this year, but you can still have some of your family traditions – even if it is smaller scale. Maybe you will even find a few new favorites to be thankful for this year.
The change of plans might mean you are preparing a bird and all the trimmings for the first time. Here are a few of our best tips if you are preparing a feast this year:
COOKING THE BIRD
There is no shortage of tips and tricks to cook a turkey, but the USDA has put all the essential information in one place. They cover how to select your turkey, how to defrost your bird, how to cook and store leftovers. All the details are on their website.
Plan and shop safely. If you are a WIC client, get as much as you can from a primarily WIC grocery store, like JC Food Mart. You will likely be in-and-out in no time. You won’t have to spend extra time searching for WIC-approved items among all those that aren’t. Also, make a list of the items you need. It will also be helpful when you start planning your dinner. Don’t forget to wear a mask.
PLAN YOUR MEAL
When it comes to preparing Thanksgiving dinner – no matter how big or small – preparation is everything.
- Review your recipes. Make sure you have a well-balanced meal that incorporates healthy fruits and vegetables. If you are looking for recipe inspiration, visit the collection at Texas WIC. There you can find great and healthy side dishes and desserts like apple crisp, cauliflower with lemon, citrus glazed carrots, fruit salad and roasted sweet potatoes.
- Keep it simple. One of the main themes of Thanksgiving Day 2020 is to keep it small. Even though we might miss spending the day with our extended family and friends, having a smaller gathering might also be less stressful. Keep your menu simple and well balanced too.
- Also, don’t forget about the leftovers. Texas WIC also has a few great recipes to help use up your leftover poultry: chicken and rice casserole and chicken tortilla soup.
FUN FOR THE KIDS
This may be the perfect year to incorporate a few new family traditions. Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Let your kids help prepare a side or take part in the cooking. Of course, what they help prepare will depend on their age. Younger children can help make a side with your supervision. Toddlers can make crafts to decorate the table. Some fun ideas include turkeys made by tracing your hand.
- Older kids can also be in charge of setting up a group phone call with extended family and friends. You can FaceTime from an iPhone or Zoom, which is free for group calling (up to 100 people) for 40 minutes or less. Both options are free of charge.
- Everyone in the family can help prepare a side dish or help you research how to cook a bird online. It’s also a fun family tradition to tell others why you are thankful. You can write notecards for the table or take turns sharing a few words before you eat.
- Don’t forget to rest and have FUN!