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Thanksgiving Menu-Planning in India

November 24, 2010

Thanksgiving is a holiday I’ve always loved celebrating in the United States.  The holiday falls very close to my birthday,  sometimes even on the same day, so maybe that’s why I’m partial to it.  But, I also love spending the holiday with family and enjoying good food and company.  This year, Thanksgiving happens to fall on Amrit’s birthday (both of our birthdays are very close – only two days apart!), so I have all the more reason to celebrate the holiday with Amrit and his friends and family here in India!

Two days ago I sat down with some cookbooks I brought from America to do some menu planning and decide what I would make for our Thanksgiving/Birthday celebration.  If I were in the United States, a normal Thanksgiving menu for my family would look something like this:

  • Appetizers – cheese & crackers, dips & spreads, and deviled eggs;
  • Turkey & stuffing;
  • Mashed potatoes & gravy;
  • Cranberry Sauce;
  • Vegetable Dish – Green beans, cooked carrots, corn, peas,  etc;
  • Bread rolls & butter;
  • Dessert – pumpkin pie, apple pie, and maybe one or two other dishes


In India, though, this menu needs to be revised slightly to accommodate for what’s in-season and available at the markets.  So, keeping this in mind, here’s my revised menu for tomorrow’s meal!

  • Appetizers – cheese & crackers, dips & spreads, and deviled eggs;All of these things are available here.  We’re skipping the appetizers mainly because we don’t have enough people to eat them.  I’ll save them for the next time we have a big party!
  • Turkey & stuffing;I’m replacing this with chicken and dumplings.  Apparently, turkey is available here, but it’s imported and costs about $120!  I like turkey… but not that much.  We’ll be sticking with our whole chicken that cost $3 instead.
  • Mashed potatoes & gravy; This we will have.  Our cook makes great mashed potatoes, so I can relax knowing that even if I spoil the other food,  at least that’s taken care of.
  • Cranberry Sauce; It probably can be found here along with other imported goods, but I didn’t feel like doing too much searching.  Plus, I thought that the flavor and texture might be lost on an Indian palate.
  • Vegetable Dish – Green beans, cooked carrots, corn, peas,  etc; All of these are in-season in India right now, so we’ll have vegetables galore at our dinner!
  • Bread rolls & butter; We’ll have this, too.  Homemade rolls, in fact.
  • Dessert – pumpkin pie, apple pie, and maybe one or two other dishes.I haven’t yet bought a pie tin, and Amrit doesn’t care for pumpkin, so instead we’ll be having an apple crumble and chocolate birthday cake.

So, tomorrow, like many other Americans, I’ll be working hard in the kitchen (though not quite as hard since I have a few extra helping hands…) trying to make this meal a reality.  Wish me luck, and a very Happy Thanksgiving to all of my readers!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Katie permalink
    November 25, 2010 3:44 am


    I love checking in on your blog time and again. You are a great story teller, and I love learning through you. Honestly, you inspire me to take risks and go on an adventure of my own.

    Also, looked at the slide show of wedding saris and I’ll say two things: 1) How will you ever pick?! They are all so beautiful, and 2) This is making me rather jealous when I think about only getting to choose from boring white. I don’t look good in white anyway! Maybe I’ll adopt my OWN american wedding custom…

    xoxo from Seattle

    • November 28, 2010 4:09 pm

      Nice to hear from you Katie!

      Choosing a sari is a skill that I’m still developing. It’s especially difficult because each store has hundreds of different options, and then that’s multiplied by the number of stores you choose to visit. Slowly, though, I’m beginning to figure out what styles and colors work for me and which don’t, but that still leaves lots of options to wade through. Eventually it comes down to how much energy I have on any given day and how long I feel like looking before I decide to buy.

      You totally could wear a sari to your wedding. Besides, aren’t “fusion weddings” all the rage these days? 🙂

  2. November 26, 2010 9:22 am

    Happy Thanksgiving Katherine

    Hope your meal went well !

    I love your wedding invitations as well.

  3. Connor permalink
    November 26, 2010 2:19 pm

    So much better than my South Korean Thanksgiving. Kimchi, anyone?

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