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Chinese food as part of Thanksgiving dinner?


pcbilly
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Many Chinese families go out for Chinese food on Thanksgiving day (Peking duck is a popular choice).

But for some of us with American relatives/spouses, this is not an option.

So, how do you incorporate your Chinese heritage into this most traditional American holiday dinner? (Or Canadian Thanksgiving in Oct?)

My sister used to serve a turkey Peking duck style; but beside this, I can’t think of anything else.

What does your family do? :hmmm:

William

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Well, I usually make the turkey "Asian style" with star anise and five spice power and ginger, etc. Our traditional sides are also always Asian. We have sticky rice instead of stufing and the relatives bring such dishes as stir-fried shrimp and vegetables, "jai"--Chinese vegetarian, buns of all sorts, etc.

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I didn't know that Chinese went out for Thanksgiving. Most of the Chinese I know eat at home. I've never heard of peking duck style turkey and I'm not sure it would work very well.

The most common practice is to roast a turkey Chinese style. This usually involves marinating it with soy, ginger, star anise, etc. and/or stuffing with a traditional glutinous rice stuffing.

Edited by sheetz (log)
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My mom, who is an amazing talent with Cantonese cuisine, was never able to master Thanksgiving. The woman could wrought wonders from a whole fish steamed with scallions and ginger. But come November, we would all have to choke down a dry turkey, bland sweet potatoes, frozen pumpkin pie and thin mashed potatoes. Now that the kids are gone, she's spending next week in Hong Kong and Chiang Mai.

I'll be making mostly American Thanksgiving dishes (brined fresh turkey, oyster bread stuffing, gratin dauphinois) but I thought I'd make dry-fried string beans as one of the side dishes. Anybody made this before and have a good recipe to refer me to?

Also have been debating over biscuits vs Peking duck flatbreads (bao bing?) to wrap up turkey with scallions and hoisin sauce. Will probably end up choosing biscuits since the flatbreads would require a lot of last minute prep.

Edited by wonderbread (log)
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We also marinate our turkey with Chinese spices. And Mom makes sticky rice too. Dad just loved my gravy with mashed potatoes, so we have that as well. As us kids got older and our tastes became more Americanized, we incorporate non-Chinese sides into our dinner. But when we have Thanksgiving at Mom's house, she does the turkey and sticky rice and we take care of the rest. Oh, and we always fight over who gets the carcass so we can make turkey jook.

Peking turkey sounds great!! You can create fusion cuisine by using cranberry sauce instead of hoisin. :biggrin:

Edited by I_call_the_duck (log)

Karen C.

"Oh, suddenly life’s fun, suddenly there’s a reason to get up in the morning – it’s called bacon!" - Sookie St. James

Travelogue: Ten days in Tuscany

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We chinese have so many festive and special occasions to celebrate throughout the year, why not just go with the flow and "endure" the dry turkey, the fresh simple vegetables, the desserts? It's not as if it's all starvation food. It's nice to go cold turkey on the soy sauce once in a while. :blink::wink:

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We chinese have so many festive and special occasions to celebrate throughout the year, why not just go with the flow and "endure" the dry turkey, the fresh simple vegetables, the desserts? It's not as if it's all starvation food. It's nice to go cold turkey on the soy sauce once in a while.  :blink:  :wink:

Dry turkey? There's no such thing!

I agree with Ben, leave Thanksgiving turkey and fixings non-Asian. I used to cringe everytime a customer says, "Where's the turkey chop suey? lemon, turkey, etc."

This is not Chinese cooking, but a hint given by a local chef said to roast the bird breast down. This way, the fat will drip to the breast and keep it moist.

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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Billy, as we are spending Thanksgiving this year with our very close Chinese/Korean friends, we'll be doing both traditional American as well as Chinese food. Rachel and I are taking care of the turkey and roast ham and stuffing, and our friends will be preparing some vegetable side dishes, as well as a number of Chinese things (and some Korean) including Jiaozi.

I'll be sure to take some photos on Thursday.

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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My daughter just reminded me that we have been doing something, "very Chinese" for Thanksgiving Dinner for over 20 + years that has become part of our ritual appreciated by all that we take doing it for granted.

The Stuffing:

We always use "Dried Chinese Chestnuts" that we soak in "Superior Soup" then brown slightly in Seseme Oil before breaking them into pieces to add to our stuffing mix. Used this way they actually taste better then "Fresh Roasted Chestnuts" and are less expensive, more consistant.

The Turkey:

Fresh Free Range, in Seattle we have purchased "Acme Brand" locally raised.

This Turkey is allowed to hang after being brined Kosher Style after doing something I learned in Hong Kong. We disjoint the Bird without breaking the skin by bending it in 1/2 back to front, next bending the wings, legs and thigh sections until the bird seems sort of floppy.

Next step is to manually loosen the skin without breaking. It's then hung with it's legs up with a fan blowing on the bird to dry and set dry.

We prepare a pyrex roaster with a grill top that fits over the top with water covering the bottom about 1 inch high.

Lay the Turkey back side up onto the grill covering the pyrex roaster and put into the oven under the Broiler. Turn on the oven to Broil and keep a check often letting the outside Brown under the high heat, when browned, turn the bird over and brown the topside under the Broiler.

After the top has browned, lower the thermostat to 225 degrees until checking the bird with a wood skewer in the thigh and breast area until the juices run without any pink color.

Remove bird from oven by taking the grill off the pyrex broiler putting the whole bird on top of a sheet pan away from the stove and let set about 12/15 minutes put on a platter or carving board slice and serve.

This method keeps the Turkey, moist, tender and juicy plus it easy to seperate the wings, legs, and thigh for slicing or seving since its already been disjointed. The Turkey cooks evenly as circulation is improved by disjointing and the liquid moistens from the pan underneath.

The liquid can be used to make a delicious Gravy, or do as we do, save the liquid to add on a plate together with the left overs being sliced for sandwiches then microwaved just long enough to be absorbed into the turkey sliced for sandwiches making it taste terrific.

The only seasoning we do is: Pepper outside bird lightly and ad several handfuls of dried onions into the cavity to enhance the flavor and absorb fats and drippings. It's disgarded after cooking.

Irwin

I don't say that I do. But don't let it get around that I don't.

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In the past few years, I've seen many families buy cooked turkey from Chinese BBQ restaurants. I've never had any but they llok like they're roasted the same way as some of the chicken.

I'm doing a traditional Thanksgiving meal this year because my grandmother is here and it's her first Thanksgiving. However, if that wasn't the case, I would have been happy doing hot pot for Thanksgiving.

A few ideas to incorpate Chinese food into Thanksgiving:

Green bean - dry sautee, Szchewan style

Greens - Chinese brocoilli w/ oyster sauce

Sweet potato - roast them in the oven w/ nothing added

Pumpkin - sliced and steam

Turkey - soy sauce turkey

Dressing - sticky rice

Corn - corn and egg flower soup

Bread - steamed buns

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! :raz:

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My family used to go over to my aunt & uncle's place for Thanksgiving. It would be part-American and part-Chinese. There would be the turkey, the ham, the cranberries, etc. Then there would be the Chinese sticky rice and some Chinese vegetables. Sometimes, my aunt's SIL would bring some sushi rolls. My cousin would bring 2-3 homemade pies. Someone would make almond jello. So, Thanksgiving dinner would be a combination of different things.

I didn't know that Chinese went out for Thanksgiving. Most of the Chinese I know eat at home.

In LA's downtown Chinatown, all the Chinese delis and dim sum places are going to be packed on Thanksgiving morning. Fathers will bring along their kids to pick up dim sum items to take back to the house and snack on them, so that the cooks can cook undistrubed! Besides, Thanksgiving is another day to make some more money!! Aiya.

Russell J. Wong aka "rjwong"

Food and I, we go way back ...

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Not so much at (Canadian) Thanksgiving, but definitely an Xmas staple is sticky rice (nor mai fan). Now I always associate nor mai fan with brussel sprouts. ?? (Not in a bad way - my Mom makes brussel sprouts with bacon, so needless to say I quite like them.)

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I'll be making mostly American Thanksgiving dishes (brined fresh turkey, oyster bread stuffing, gratin dauphinois) but I thought I'd make dry-fried string beans as one of the side dishes. Anybody made this before and have a good recipe to refer me to?

Would you like something like this?

(String beans with Sa Cha Sauce)

gallery_19795_2101_1231.jpg

1 lb of string beans. 1 onion, wedged. 3-4 cloves of garlic. 1/2 jalapeno pepper, sliced. On wok, 2 tblsp of oil at high heat. Add garlic, jalapeno, then wedged onions. Add 1/2 tsp of salt. Add 3 tsp of Sa Cha Sauce. Sautee for a minute. Add string beans. Add 1/4 cup of chicken broth and a bit of water. Cook for about 10-15 minutes (medium heat), first with lid on, then with lid off half way to reduce.

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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I can't remember the recipe, but I do know that for great dry-fried string beans (gan bien shu gi do) you have to pre-deep fry the string beans before you stir fry them. Oh, and don't omit the ground pork. That makes a big difference in my book. One more thing, as many BTUs as you can muster.

Edited by hhlodesign (log)
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I can't remember the recipe, but I do know that for great dry-fried string beans (gan bien shu gi do)  you have to pre-deep fry the string beans before you stir fry them. Oh, and don't omit the ground pork. That makes a big difference in my book. One more thing, as many BTUs as you can muster.

Thanks for the suggestions! Don't know how hzrt8w happened to have a photo of green beans lying around. I haven't cooked with sa cha sauce before but I will pick up a jar this week. And I will deep fry the green beans first - I agree that the ground pork is a must.

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I can't remember the recipe, but I do know that for great dry-fried string beans (gan bien shu gi do)  you have to pre-deep fry the string beans before you stir fry them. Oh, and don't omit the ground pork. That makes a big difference in my book. One more thing, as many BTUs as you can muster.

Oh yes definitely deep fry them if you can before stir frying them.

The crunch is so much better.

Herb aka "herbacidal"

Tom is not my friend.

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This google link leads to several recipes ------ a couple of them have pork in the list of ingredients.

One time I made a dinner for a couple, and included 'dry fried green beans'. I had to adjust the meal as the gentleman had a heart problem, so no fried food and no fatty pork. For this dish, I used ground turkey, and instead of deep/frying the beans, I boiled them, dried them, then placed them under the broiler with a very thin spray of Pam to barely oil them. They blistered like the deep/fried ones! I was surprised just how good they turned out!!

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I'm going to be going to my friend's house for thanksgiving, and they said they were going to get 1 Peking duck and one Cantonese roast duck instead of making a Chinese-style turkey. Anyone else do this or know of other Chinese-American families doing this? BTW, they've done this for the past 10 or so years, I've just decided to hang out with them this year for Thanksgiving.

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I'm going to be going to my friend's house for thanksgiving, and they said they were going to get 1 Peking duck and one Cantonese roast duck instead of making a Chinese-style turkey. ,

This is reminiscent of A Christmas Story by Jean Sheperd. The turkey was left to cool on the kitchen table when the neighbor's gang of dogs raided. Off to the local Chinese restaurant for Peking Duck and singing waiters!

"Fa ra ra ra ra, ra ra ra ra" :laugh:

I love that movie, and Peking/Cantonese roast duck!

Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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I deep-fried the green beans, then sauteed them with ground pork, garlic, soy, chili-garlic bean sauce, sugar and some sesame oil. They tasted fantastic, exactly the way I remember them at the restaurant.

I did however, get lazy and try to deep-fry too many beans at once instead of doing more batches and they didn't come out as crispy as I had hoped. Thanks for the advice!

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