Holiday Meal Prep

Introduction: Holiday Meal Prep

Holiday cooking can be a very stressful time, but it doesn't have to be. If you are fortunate enough to be invited to a meal and do not need a dish to pass... You're lucky! I am the sole cook for my family of six. I admit that in the past, I would wake up the day of a Holiday meal and groan at the thought of all the food items I had to prepare. The task ahead would seem daunting and make the day overwhelming. So over the years I have accumulated a little more wisdom along with grey hair...Now I try to prepare ahead as much as possible for smooth Holiday meals. I am sharing a few of the common items that are made.

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Step 1: Butternut Squash

You Need: two medium butternut squash sliced in half length wise and scoop seeds and guts out with a spoon, non stick cooking spray, large bowl, potato masher, cookie sheet, airtight container with lid.
Preheat oven to 400°, spray cookie sheet with cooking spray, place prepared squash face down on cookie sheet, bake for 30 minutes. Once it has cooled enough to safely touch peel off the skins and put the squash in large bowl. Use the masher to get it to the desired consistency. If you prefer a creamier texture use a food processor. Store in an airtight container for 3-5 days in the fridge or freezer up to 12 months. When ready to use season with salt and pepper, butter, brown sugar etc. It's all a preference of taste.

Step 2: Ham and Green Onion Roll Ups

You Need: a package of cooked ham lunch meat (use paper towel to blot if wet), two blocks of cream cheese softened, a few bunches of green onions (dice the green part only with scissors), a dash each of salt and pepper, a sprinkle of garlic powder. Combine all ingredients except for ham. Spread over the ham then roll up like a log. Chill for 1-2 hrs. After they have chilled, slice them in 1-2 in pieces. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and put in fridge. They can be refrigerated for up to 4 days but I recommend eating the day after. The flavor is incredible!

Step 3: Green Bean Casserole

You Need: 10.5 oz can cream of mushroom soup, 3 14.5 oz cans cut green beans drained, 1tsp soy sauce, 1/2 C milk, 1/2 tsp black pepper, 1/4 tsp salt, 1 1/2 C cripsy fried onions, casserole dish, plastic wrap or lid if you have one for the dish.
Combine ingredients EXCEPT for the onions. Cover the casserole and refrigerate up to two days. When ready to use pull out if the fridge a half hour before cooking or you will need to add bake time. Preheat the oven to 350°. Cover the top of your casserole with the crispy fried onions. Bake uncovered for 30-35 minutes.

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