baking for thanksgiving

so, we're hosting thanksgiving for an as-yet-undetermined amount of people on thursday. the guest list is a bit fluid because my sister's entire family of four has been struggling with the creeping crud and getting worse instead of better, so i'm not sure what their status will be. i'm guessing we'll have a total of 10 or 11 people, unless the four of them can't make it. anyhow, we still haven't settled on what we're serving… i think the masses are expecting lasagna, but then i opened my mouth about the pumpkin ziti in veganomicon (which i've never had but it sounds delicious), and now i'm not sure what my husband is thinking about doing. we could also do an "everything but the turkey" feast, but i started the lasagna rumor and now i think that's what everyone wants/expects. anyhow, that's dilemma number one. 

dilemma number two is what to serve for dessert. i'm not doing pumpkin pie, but i'd like to do pumpkin something. i could go with the tried-and-true pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes from VCTOTW, or i could try the pumpkin crumb cake in veganomicon… anyone give that one a shot yet? and then, because it's my family, i feel like i should do a chocolate-something too. my mom and my uncle aren't super adventurous when it comes to non-chocolate desserts, so i like to have something on hand for the doubters. ooooh, there's also chai cake! that's always good. hmm. my other thing i need to decide is: what is or isn't okay to bake a day ahead? my husband asked if there was a way for me to get baking out of the way before thursday, and i ALWAYS bake the day of, so i don't know the rules. if what i'm making involves frosting, doesn't that have to be done closer to eating-time?

on saturday we go to our second thanksgiving (we do this every year), so i'll probably try to bring a dessert to that, too… and i would have to bake a day ahead for that as well. that crowd is super vegan-friendly and always makes bunches of stuff for me, but i like to bring dessert whenever i can. 


  1. IMO, frosted cakes or cupcakes can TOTALLY be done the day before. That gives you plenty of time to let them cool before being frosted, to take the time to decorate, etc, and the frosting will “seal in the freshness”. πŸ˜€ I mean, seriously, when have you realistically ever thought to yourself, “Ew, this cake was obviously made 24 whole hours ago. Gross!” Heh. I say, bake it up on Wednesday! (That’s what I’m doing. I’m bringing cake to our friends’ house for Thanksgiving, and making it in advance. We will be long-distance cake twins! I’m going for boring regular completely mundane plain chocolate (none of your pumpkinfoolery here!), but will make the icing pretty and stacking up 2 layers so it seems fancier. :))

  2. I’m hosting this year too. For dessert, I’m making the pumpkin cheesecake from the Fat Free Vegan website (it’s SOOOO good, and not fat free, despite the name of the site) πŸ™‚ and a better-than-sex dessert to cover the chocolate aspect. I haven’t made that one before, but it has a pecan layer, chocolate pudding, whipped ‘cream’, chocolate shavings… mmm.
    I agree that it’s fine to make frosted stuff ahead of time. I don’t know if it’s necessary, but if the frosting has vegan cream cheese it it, I keep it in the fridge until maybe an hour before serving.
    Oh – have you made the carrot cake in VWAV? That’s kind of seasonal, and soooo good. I leave out the macadamia nuts and use a cream cheese frosting rather than the coconut recipe in the book.

  3. I always make the cake part of cakes the day before. and then I let it cool completely and then wrap it in plastic wrap and leave it out on the counter (or, in the oven with the oven turned off). The day of is frosting day. I always make my pies the day before, too. And cupcakes, usually. So, yeah, do that :p
    I’m making a pumpkin pie and a chocolate/vanilla pie and maybe apple pie bars. mmmm.

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