What's your culture cooking?

Grab your forks and dig in. It is almost that time where we come together as a family and pig out on our favorite dishes. The traditional American Thanksgiving includes the turkey, which is a staple to have on Thanksgiving Day, ham, casserole, rolls and all kinds of other fixings.

We eat so much our bellies become stuffed. We unfasten that belt that was holding us back from our fullest potential and head to the kitchen for a second plate. Not only is Thanksgiving about eating delicious meals and your favorite deserts, it is also about appreciating one another.

Throughout the year, we may be too busy to sit down and enjoy one another’s company. Thanksgiving allows us to join in fellowship with each other and truly reflects on the many blessings that have been bestowed upon us that year.

With that being said, America is a giant melting pot and we have people who have come from all over to live in this great country. However, do those people of different backgrounds partake in Thanksgiving?

Seeing how it is an American holiday and there are many people from all around the globe that live here, do they eat traditional Thanksgiving food or do they celebrate Thanksgiving with their own cultural spin?

Cynthia Xu, a senior at Texas Tech University, whose ethnic background is Chinese, informed me that her and her family indeed do celebrate Thanksgiving, but with their own spin. Her family goes to a dim sum place in Ypsilanti, where they serve small plates of traditional Chinese food. Her and her family order different meals and they share them with one another.

Xu further explained that a lot of Chinese individuals who are still in China do not know about Thanksgiving. Her family is a more modern Chinese family with a bit of American tradition, who has chosen to celebrate the holiday as a Chinese-American holiday.

When asked what Thanksgiving means to her and her culture, she responded, “A time to ponder those things that I am thankful for and appreciate my family.”

Shenaz Grewal, a graduate of Eastern Michigan University, whose ethnic background is Indian, celebrates Thanksgiving the traditional American way. They will have different foods that reflect their culture, but for the most part, they are pretty standard and follow the same traditional foods as the majority of us.

Grewal stated, “Thanksgiving is just a day to me that reminds me of how important my family is to me. A day we can sit down and spend time together because we all have different schedules and lives. So it allows us to relax and enjoy each other’s company.”

Maneeshi Singh Sandu, a senior at Michigan State University, comes from a city within India called Punjab. His family has always celebrated Thanksgiving here in the states and they tend to spice things up a bit by adding their Indian cuisine to our traditional meal.

Although Thanksgiving is not recognized in India, they do have a similar holiday, which exhibits the same kind of values as the American holiday. Sandu said Thanksgiving is his favorite time of the year.

“It is an opportunity to make amazing memories with my family and friends,” he said.

Nyambara Njee, a senior at EMU, whose family is from Kenya, do not celebrate Thanksgiving even though she was born in America. To her family, it is just another day and they do not give it much attention.

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, maybe you can try a new food from a different culture and incorporate it into your American cuisine.

If your family has a unique way of incorporating different cultures into your Thanksgiving Day feast, share with us on Twitter and Instagram by tagging @TheEasternEcho.


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