Thanksgiving in Tahiti

Holidays abroad are some of the most poignant times to be homesick.

This year was especially a hard time to be away since it was Ryder’s first holiday season.

It’s times like these that I wish I had my superhero power: the ability to be multiple places at once.

Fortunately, Jacob knew some people here in Tahiti from the LDS mission he served in New Caledonia, making it feel a bit more homey.

We cooked Thanksgiving dinner for them.

It’s not always easy to find American-style food abroad. And I’m not nearly as experienced at cooking as I probably ought to be after 4.5 years of marriage. However, we managed ham, turkey, mashed potatoes that weren’t boiled enough, green bean casserole, corn on the cob, “ants on a log” (celery with cheese and raisins) and stuffing.

The stuffing was homemade and tasted JUST LIKE Stovetop. I actually really like Stovetop dressing. I didn’t think it was imitable. They don’t have it here in Tahiti. Here is the recipe, in the sad event you are ever in a place that does not have StoveTop.

(Source: http://culinaryarts.about.com/od/chickenturkeymore/r/stuffing.htm)

Ingredients:
  • 8 slices white bread
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • ½ stick butter
  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 Tbsp chopped sage, thyme and/or marjoram
  • 1 cup chicken or turkey stock
Preparation:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 °F.
  2. Cut bread into ½-inch cubes. Spread bread cubes on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until lightly golden. Give the pan a shake midway through so the cubes brown evenly. Remove pan and let the bread cubes cool.
  3. Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Sauté the onion and celery until the onion is slightly translucent. Remove from heat and let cool.
  4. Transfer the bread cubes, chopped herbs and the cooked celery and onions to a large bowl and give it all a toss to combine.
  5. Now, drizzle a bit of the stock over the bread cubes and gently mix. Repeat until all the bread has been moistened but not too wet. You might not use all of the stock.
  6. Butter a baking dish, transfer the dressing to the dish and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is crispy. Serve hot.

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The stuffing is the one in the silver pot.

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Here’s the Tahitian family we invited to experience Thanksgiving with us.

We ended the night with some Kinect games.

Now that we have Ryder, it’s important to me that we celebrate all the holidays and don’t let them slip by without any fanfare. We’re going to start creating our own holidays wherever we are.

Kalli Hiller

Article by Kalli Hiller

Kalli Hiller is a voluntary vagabond who, with her husband Jacob, has traveled full time for the last eight years.

Kalli has written 366 awesome articles for us.

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