Sunday, November 27, 2005

Belated Thanksgiving Dinner!

Belated Thanksgiving Dinner 2005

Dear readers,
I hereby announce that I just had my belated Thanksgiving dinner, and I’m officially stuffed now. The reason why I still celebrate it alone here in Japan is explained in my 2004 Thanksgiving dinner entry, and the reason hasn’t changed.

The menu this time was not too different from last year’s Thanksgiving dinner, but there were some improvements. I made the same stuffed chicken breast, but for the stuffing I used this recipe today, because I’d always wanted to try making rice-stuffed chicken. I knew that the Thai rice I can find here will never be like wild rice, but I was willing to risk it. What’s more, hazelnuts called for in the recipe sounded absolutely tempting.

All-in-one plate

As expected, the rice made the stuffing mushy, but it tasted pretty good because of the hazelnuts! I love hazelnuts in anything, but I wasn’t sure if they’d go with chicken. They did :) I’m so happy that I bought a small bag of hazelnuts at an imported food shop in Kobe (don’t ask me when). Maybe I shouldn’t have added a little honey to the cranberry sauce… It was just an idea that popped up in my mind at the last minute. With the nutty flavor from the stuffing, I guess the sauce didn’t really need to be sweetened.

Another change from last year was the vegetables. I cooked carrots and string beans, because last year the frozen green peas turned out terrible! Mashed potato was the same instant stuff as last year, but without gravy this time.

I also used a different cornbread recipe today. Actually I was going to add the leftover sour cream, too, but I forgot. :(

And the dessert!
Yep, apple pie again, but this year, I made an apple crumble pie. (Maybe I made a mistake in conversion?? My crumbles obviously had too much butter and didn’t crumble at all, so I ended up adding some extra flour and eventually sugar, too. :P) I didn’t want this pie to occupy my oven for too long, so I pre-cooked the apple slices and used a pre-baked pie shell from the store. BTW, the ice cream I put on the warm apple pie had vanilla beans in it. Yay!

I promise. I’ll get some exercise tonight….

* I uploaded some photos of autumn leaves here, if you want to take a look.


Anonymous said...

What a fantastic looking Thanksgiving dinner. ....hope you were able to share it with someone!!!

Anonymous said...

Well, me too .. I'm always available to taste-test.
If you care to send me your address, I'll be happy to mail some wild rice to you.
God bless, Christine in Los Angeles

Winslow said...

Hi Obachan,

That Thanksgiving menu is positively mouth-watering. :)

purplecupcake said...

That looks like a beautiful Thanksgiving dinner. I'm happy to send you some American items, too if you cannot find them in Japan. I don't mind! Email when you need something.

obachan said...

glutton rabbit
Oh, sure! Please come and celebrate it with me next time (including cooking, too.) :D

Well, unfortunately there was no one to share the dinner with, so the calories and fat were all mine. Ha-ha-ha. I did go walking that night, though.

Christine in LA
Oh, how nice of you to give me such a kind offer. Okay, I guess there’s a way to order some imported foods online, so I’ll do some research on that, and if there was no way and if I’d desperately need something from the U.S., I would email you. Thanks.

Wow, thanks. I might try a totally different combination next year, though.

Boy I feel flattered. I’m making a progress? Maybe?

Oh, thank you so much for your kind offer. I’ll keep that in mind, and as I replied to Christine, I’d email you if I desperately needed something.

Annie said...

Well, I was going to offer to send you wild rice, too, so now you have three possible American sources for impossible-to-find-in-Japan ingredients!

Interesting that you include cornbread in your 'traditional American Thanksgiving dinner'. My family never included it and I only started when I began cooking the feast, myself. I don't know why. What I really wanted to make and just never got around to it was Indian Pudding. That sounds like something that might have been served at a celebration earlier in US history, doesn't it? I didn't host the dinner this year, so all I made was pumpkin pie, grated apple pie and (to go with the leftovers) collard greens and cornbread. Collards are more a southern US tradition than anywhere else but I liked them when I tried them this way. :)

obachan said...

Hi Annie,

Thank you so much for your kind offer! I feel so secure now. :)
This Indian pudding sounds really interesting. Cornmeal, molasses, raisins, walnuts and ginger… a combination I’ve never tried before. I think I’m going to give it a try sometime.
I don’t think I’ve tried grated apple pie, either. Wouldn’t the grated apple turn out runny?
I miss collard greens… :)

Anne said...


I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoy your blog. I think it is very 'erai' of you to make such a fabulous Thanksgiving meal while in Japan! I never did that, regrettably. Your blog combines my two passions- cooking and Japan-and I look forward to checking it out daily.


Annie said...

Obachan, yes, the grated apple mixture was very juicy when it went into the oven (I admit I was a little worried) but it turned out just fine. I used my favorite granny smith apples, which made for a nice sour contrast when mixed with the sugar.

obachan said...

Thank you for such a nice comment. There’s nothing ‘erai’ about making Thanksgiving meal in Japan, though… it just gives me a perfect excuse to make stuffed chicken breast and also to stuff myself with lots of food. That's all. ;)

Sounds really delish! Mmmmm….

Anonymous said...

The dishes look good, Obachan. Wish I could have a bite! :)

obachan said...

amber amethryne
Thank you. Hey, start saving money and come to Japan next year in November so that you can join my Thanksgiving dinner ;)

Randi said...

im glad to see you celebrate thanksgiving. I celebrate american thanksgiving too even though I live in canada now. Arent there any american expats around where you live? I invited other canadians to come celebrate with me because I dont know any americans here.

obachan said...

I'm glad that you had a good Thanksgiving with your Canadian friends.
I guess there are Americans around here who might be missing Thanksgiving, but if they want to eat my dinner or not is a different story. Besides, my place (both kitchen and living room) ends up in a total mess after I prepare a big dinner like this. ;P