Friday, December 3, 2010

Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

I know, I know, this post is so long overdue.  But I still wanted to share with you pictures, memories, and traditions of my most favorite holiday, the one dedicated solely to eating, Thanksgiving.

Our Thanksgivings usually begin with some half-baked ideas about what we're making and who's making what.

Then everyone comes over, usually around noon, with loads of groceries and booze.

The turkey goes in the oven (a little late), we get the apps started, and we begin eating.  And drinking.  And cooking while drinking.

Somehow, we manage to put out over twenty dishes, mostly traditional with a few Chinese ones thrown in for good measure.

The turkey comes out of the oven.  By five o'clock.  Seven, at the latest.

By the time all the dishes have been plated, we're all a little full from snacking, and a little more than a little buzzed.

We take an obligatory picture, sometimes of everyone, sometimes just the cousins (just cousins this year), and then we line up for the food, served buffet style.

We load up our plates, our eyes much bigger than our stomachs, and find the nearest empty seat, whether it's in the family room, the dining room, or the kitchen.

A moment of silence as we take our first bites.  More booze.  Before the tryptophan fog settles in, we make sure to go for seconds, serving ourselves anything that we might have missed on the first round.

We don't forget the jello mold.

Those of us strong enough go in for dessert.  We continue drinking.  At some point, people start to go home.  I pass out at 9 PM.

But Thanksgiving doesn't end there.  On Friday, we go to my aunt's house for day-after-Thanksgiving hot pot.  Hot pot at my aunt's house is a special event that takes place only twice a year, on this day and on Christmas.

She lays out a spread of shrimp, fish, fish balls, impeccably thinly sliced rib eye, sliced pork, tofu, Chinese cabbage, spinach, bean thread noodles, and other goodies.

To the side, there's different bowls of sauces.  We line up and make our own sauce.  I like mine spicy with lots of cilantro and garlic.

We gather 'round the hot pots, armed with chopsticks and ladles.  We begin by taking a piece of meat here, a handful of spinach there, a heap of dried noodles... and dunk it all into the bubbling broth.  The meat comes out quickly.  The noodles linger for a bit.

It all goes for a swim in my sauce and, you guessed it, into my belly!

Oh, Thanksgiving.  Oh, hot pot.


Best. Holiday. Ever.