Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving in Korea

There is no doubt that we'd rather be home for the holidays, but there are so many memories to be made here that we are counting our blessings on this side of the world, too.

Blessings like safety.
A bank account with money in it.
And each other.

It's a blessing to have met friends like Bob and Trish here in Cheongju. For Thanksgiving, we got together last weekend with the four of us and a Korean family we know. We went "all out" (well, as far as you can go without a few key ingredients). I took the turkey, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie.

Turkey is non-existant in Korea other than the meat in the Subway sandwiches (which made an appearance at our dinner, if only for the novelty). So I just baked some chicken and called it good. The cranberry sauce was made from leftover apple sauce I made, Craisins (I found at Costco), and some cinnamon. The real feat was the pumpkin pie.

I searched high and low to find pumpkin to no avail. So I decided sweet potatoes and carrots would have to do and THEY DID! It turned out really well, actually. We cleaned, peeled, and cooked the veggies, added whipping cream, eggs, sugar, and cinnamon.

Trish made mashed potatoes, broccoli, and gravy. Subway provided the subs and the salad. 

James couldn't be bothered by this Thanksgiving business, so Bob coaxed him into a few bites of chicken per round of UNO.

This is Minsu, his wife, their daughter Hannah, and Trish. They were polite guests who said the food wasn't bad. SCORE!

Hannah was so kind to take a picture of us. 

Time at the Evans' always ends up as play time. There's just so many fun things to play with! Here is 45 seconds of our many attempts to balance and exchange spinning plates.

We were so grateful for this pre-Thankgiving day celebration over the weekend with friends. We also wanted to do something to celebrate on Thursday. So we made little pumpkin pies to share with our co-workers at school. They were pretty thrilled. The kids seemed to get a kick of listening to my description of Thanksgiving, too! I even got to have my first snail soup experience on Thanksgiving!

The grade 5 boys huddling around the heater which was turned on for the FIRST time today!

But Thursday night, we put on our pajamas, played Christmas music, decorated our tree, and made some yummy comfort food. I made what we'll call "Thanksgiving casserole", mashed potatoes, and gravy.

I wanted stuffing, but since I am gluten-free, bread was out of the question. So I bought some plain dok (Korean rice cake) and used it instead. The consistency was obviously a bit chewier, but mix it all up with onions, celery, chicken stock, Craisins, and almonds and it's pretty darn good!

Here's to you and yours. Wishing you lots of yummy food, time with people you love, and good memories all around. 

Happy Thanksgiving,
Heather and Jeremy