Cranberry Sauce

Some of my students asked me about Thanksgiving, and I tried to give them a good description of the holiday’s history and it’s current incarnation, while hoping they wouldn’t equate Thanksgiving with their foreign teachers singing bits of Livin’ On A Prayer in the office and giggling. My Korean students, who know my dislike for three-quarters of the food in Yantai, love asking me about American food. I think it’s their way of tormenting me for all the grammar-related hell I force on them.

They understood a turkey, and pies, but they laughed when I explained stuffing. You take a big loaf of bread, then cut it up small, let it go stale and dry, then make it wet again with broth, and then you bake it again. No, kids, it’s very different from bread. Really.

As for cranberry sauce, I explained that we take a small, tart berry, that only grows in specific environmental conditions in one part of the country, then we cook it with enough sugar to make it sweet, and ship it out the non-Cape Cod part of the US. They thought that was even funnier.

Which got me thinking… If a hard winter for a few pilgrims turned an almost inedible cranberry into a national delicacy, is it any wonder that with a huge population and decades of hunger, the Chinese can turn anything that’s not actually poisonous into dinner?

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0 Responses to Cranberry Sauce

  1. Living Online says:

    I am from China, and I am living in US now. I think Thanksgiving is not strange to Chinese students (young people), but they do not know more detail about US people like have big Thanksgiving dinner (turkey,pie) with family. I think it likes Chinese Mid-Autumn festival. I think stuffing like some Chinese food that chopped some stuff & mixed, put it into inside of chicken or duck. But stuffing that as you say they are breading, my wife like put some mushrooms & onion. That is very hard to understanding for Chinese people. I think another thing is hard to explain that is cranberry. I still do not know how to translate it to Chinese, even use dictionary that makes me more confusing. I have never see or test cranberry while I live in China.

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