November 20, 2012

Food and American Culture: Thanksgiving

Once a quintessentially American meal of turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin pie, Thanksgiving dinner is beginning to reflect the ethnic melting pot of the American population.

Perhaps oddly, given the United States’ ethnically diverse population, Thanksgiving meals have traditionally looked remarkably uniform throughout the country.  According to this article in the Fort Worth, TX newspaper Star-Telegram, however, ethnic food trends during the holiday season are becoming more popular.

Items such as Mexican tamales, Turkish pumpkin soup, and turkey basted with soy sauce are making their way onto Thanksgiving menus throughout the country.

The article quotes an instructor at Le Cordon Bleu Dallas as saying that the popularity of cooking shows on television has increased people’s awareness of different, exotic recipes and cooking methods.

With grocery stores like Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s that offer a variety of international products, it is becoming easier for Americans to experiment with different cuisines.

Food plays an important role in culture, and the United States’ most food-centric holiday of the year may be finally beginning to reflect the diversity that makes up ours.

by kate marcal