Posted by: vlibrizzi | November 29, 2009

Our Thanksgiving in France

Last night we joined some of our American and international friends for a Thanksgiving dinner abroad. Each person was in charge of bringing at least one dish, and for those who were celebrating Thanksgiving for the first time, the Turkey Day veterans provided recipes and precise instructions. 

Although it was difficult to find some traditional Thanksgiving ingredients in France (i.e., I had to shlep into Paris to buy cranberries, we had French’s fried onions shipped in from the U.S., and we still don’t know where or how to find brown sugar), everything came out really, really well. 

C. and I made caramelized shallot mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, cranberry butter, and an apple pie. And, I think they all turned out well, except our potatoes, which were a bit too lumpy since we don’t have a masher. You can see C. improvising by using a soup ladle to mash the potatoes in the photo to the left. What a trooper! 🙂

Besides the potatoes, cranberries, and pie, we had corn pudding, salad, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, stuffing, and two different kinds of gravy at the table last night. But of course, the best food of all at Thanksgiving was the turkey–we bought an 8 kilo bird straight from the butcher (the turkey was so fresh that our friend had to ask the butcher to remove the head and feathers!). 

 Besides sharing the lovely meal, we celebrated Thanksgiving in true corny U.S. fashion (a la kindergarden), by all sporting our festive garb: 

Pilgrim hats for the ladies

And Indian headdresses for the gentlemen

Later in the evening, to avoid letting the wine and tryptophane set in, we played charades, pictionary, and our Cranium-inspired game of “humdinger.” It was such a lovely evening.

Although I was feeling homesick the other day because we had to miss Thanksgiving, being able to celebrate with friends in France this year reminded me that I certainly do have a lot to be thankful for.



  1. So great that you shared the most American of holiday traditions……Thanksgiving…..with others.
    While we missed you at our celebrations, we know you will return with new recipes and traditions to enrich our future Thanksgivings.

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