Monday, November 30, 2009

Giving Thanks

I went to my uncle’s place for Thanksgiving, which is, in case you didn’t know, a major holiday in the US and an occasion for family get-togethers. The traditional Thanksgiving Day meal includes a whole turkey and pumpkin pie, among other things. I’d never has turkey before, except in a sandwich or two, and they don’t put too much of it in there. I got to see how the whole meal is prepared, how the big bird is marinated overnight and roasted in the oven. My aunt made pumpkin chiffon for dessert, a lighter, fluffier variation of pumpkin pie that I absolutely loved. This was probably the first time in my life that I had dessert that was delicious and did not make me feel over stuffed and heavy in the stomach.

I like the way Americans plan their meal for this day. They start out with the turkey and everything else at about three or four in the afternoon, and eat slowly, for an hour or so, then take a break before dessert. It combines lunch and dinner into one meal and doesn’t leave you feeling heavy at the end of it. It’s a lavish meal with a number of dishes, but none of them use a significant amount of oil or butter or anything of the sort. The turkey is roasted; the mashed potatoes are baked and then mashed, as are the mashed sweet potatoes. I don’t know about traditional pumpkin pie, but the pumpkin chiffon was lighter than air.

The weather is quite cold now. My aunt ran out of space in both of the extra large refrigerators that they have, and she put the turkey and some other stuff outside on the deck overnight. I’m thinking it was cooled better than the stuff that was actually refrigerated.

The point of this holiday is to count your blessings and be thankful for them. I am thankful that, in spite of being so far away from home, I have a place to go home for the holidays.

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