Ree Drummond enjoys giving fans an inside look at what life is like living on her busy cattle ranch in Oklahoma and showcasing how she creates delicious and comforting dinners for her family. Some of her most popular recipes are decadent blueberry pancakes, savory chicken-fried steak with gravy, and her famously gooey cinnamon rolls. However, even with decades of cooking under her belt, The Pioneer Woman still preps as far in advance as she can if she's hosting a large gathering.
Drummond told us in an exclusive interview that she first makes a detailed list of each dish she will make and all the steps involved. The cookbook author then figures out which parts of the meal she can create a week or at least a few days in advance. "Prepping ahead of time — from freezing appetizers to dicing vegetables to making pie crust to peeling potatoes — can make all the difference in the world," she explained. "I always do this, whether it's Thanksgiving dinner or a dinner party for 12."
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Her Favorite Meal To Make Ahead Of An Event
When it comes to the holidays, One of Drummond's favorite dishes to whip is her mashed potato casserole. She told us in a previous interview she makes it two days before Thanksgiving and Christmas so she can save time on the actual day of the gathering. The recipe features starchy russet potatoes, bacon, butter, sour cream, milk, cheddar, and green onions. Then you layer it in a baking dish and put it in the oven for 40 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
But while there are many things that can be made ahead of time, Drummond recommended leaving the freshest parts of the meal for the big day or just a day prior. For example, salads and charcuterie boards should really be made as close to the event as possible because you don't want your greens to get soggy or have your cheese and meat go bad. The "Big Bad Budget Battle" star explained that ultimately the goal of preparing dishes in advance is to give her more quality time to talk with her guests and enjoy the moment — which is really what parties with friends and family should be about.
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