With Thanksgiving just around the corner, the time has come to start planning for the big family meal and gathering. Between deciding on side-dishes and finding the juiciest turkey, thinking about the excessive amount of energy wasted while cooking the Thanksgiving feast simply just doesn’t make it on the list of “to-dos”. Lucky for you, we’ve done the thinking for you, and have a few tips to keep you from gobbling up energy this Thanksgiving holiday.
Before the Festivities Begin
Go ahead and plan out your meal by thinking about what side-dishes can be cooked at the same time the turkey is in the oven. If certain dishes can be cooked at the same temperature, you’ll cut the amount of time your oven is working dramatically. Also, consider turning down your thermostat. The oven will keep your home relatively warm, not to mention the extra bodies from out of state roaming around the house.
While You’re Cooking
Using ceramic or glass cooking wear will allow you to turn your oven down about 25 degrees and achieve the same results. Ceramic and glass retain heat very well, so your dishes will continue the cooking process even when they’re taken out of the oven. Also, stay mindful of your microwave, toaster oven, and slow-cooker. These devices use a lot less energy than your oven and stovetop, and can produce the same products without overworking your other appliances. That being said, make sure you resist the temptation to peek inside your slow-cooker. Each time the lid is removed, heat is released and can add about 25 minutes to cooking time. This rule goes for your oven as well!
There’s nothing worse than having a full belly and cleaning the dishes of your entire family. But what if we told you that your traditional way of cleaning up after the Thanksgiving meal is not only wasting energy and water, but also wasting your time? A lot of people tend to rinse their dishes fully before putting them in the dishwasher. This actually wastes a lot of water and frankly, isn’t necessary. Dishwashers are designed to extract those tough food remains from your dishes. So, try dry scraping your dishes rather than washing them before placing them into the dishwasher. To save even more energy, turn off your dishwasher before the heated dry cycle begins. Simply open the appliance door and let the dishes air dry.