Nov 012007

Kitchen Fun with Carol

carol2007Happy Thanksgiving everyone! As the holidays approach I am putting together my cooking plans for the big festivities. Planning ahead always takes the stress out of holidays and lets me spend more time on the things that are more important such as spending time with family and friends. I plan for both Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Even if I am not hosting, it helps to have recipes made ahead for hostess gifts, potlucks, or small impromptu gatherings.

This year I am in charge of desserts and breads for the big Thanksgiving Day feast. For dessert I will be making Apple PieCherry Pie, Pumpkin Cake RollFreezer Cheesecake and Pecan Pie Bars. For the breads I will be making Crescent Rolls and No Knead Bread. My kids like to cook so they will be helping me prepare these recipes. It is fun to work in the kitchen together.

I still bought a turkey even though I am not hosting Thanksgiving this year. I could not pass up the great deal. Turkeys here are .39 a pound. We will cook the turkey sometime between Christmas and the New Year. We will have it for one meal and then the rest of the leftover meat is used for freezer cooking. Some of my favorite recipes for left over turkey are:

Chicken and Dumplings
Chicken Fried Rice
Cheesy Chicken and Noodles
Chicken/Turkey Patties (from Members Only Section)
Chicken Tetrazzini (from Members Only Section)
Country Chicken/Turkey Pot Pie (from The Freezer Cooking Manual)
Freezer Quesadillas
Turkey and Noodles

SanteeChristmas2006_043My kids are older but many of my nieces and nephews are 10 and under. We always try to plan some type of craft activity for the children. In the past we have helped the children make Holiday Jar Cookies or we have made and decorated Sugar Cookies together. One of their favorite activities is making ornaments for the Christmas tree. Last year we made foam snowmen and beaded wire ornaments. They were great fun! You can pick up kits at your local craft or fabric store. For other ideas, check out They have lots of kid friendly craft ideas for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Check out the Marshmallow Pilgrim Hats for Thanksgiving or the Scented Ornaments for Christmas.

  • Do you need some recipe ideas for the holidays?  A great source for recipes is the 30 Day Gourmet web site! Click here to access our recipe database. Choose the kind of recipe you’re looking for (Side and Salad, Bread and Breakfast, etc.) and scroll through the list to see what sounds good to you. There are hundreds of recipes to choose from.
  • Do you need help planning your holiday meal or learning how to cook for a crowd?  Then our Holiday Freezer Cooking ebook is for you. There are lots of helpful tips and hints, tally sheets, a shopping list form, and a count down sheet that helps you plan that perfect meal.

Bonus Recipes

Pumpkin Snack Cake
The is a very moist cake that tastes great warm with some whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. It is also good sprinkled with powdered sugar or with your favorite cream cheese frosting. My boys say it tastes just like pumpkin pie.

If you have never had a Snickerdoodle you are missing out! They are basically a type of sugar cookie that are cover with a cinnamon and sugar mixture. This is one of our favorite cookie recipes. We usually make them for Christmas but lately I have been making them to send for lunch. There must be a million different recipes for Snickerdoodles. This is the one my family uses.

Closing Comments from Carol

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Do you have any recipes that you would like to share? I’d love to try and share them with everyone. You can post your recipes on the 30 Day Gourmet Facebook® fan page or click here to send me an email. Or do you have any other topics that you would like me to cover? Click here to send me an email. I enjoy hearing from you!

Have fun in your kitchen!


Carol Santee

Carol is the co-author of the Big Book of Freezer Cooking and the author of 30 Day Gourmet’s Slow Cooker Freezer Favorites, Freezer Lunches To Go and Healthy Freezer Cooking eBooks. She is a computer information specialist and works for a computer software company.

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