Let's stand up for pumpkin pie

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 24 November, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 24 November, 2011, 12:00am


Get everyone home for dinner and dig out your loosest jeans, because Thanksgiving is officially here. Now, I know that Thanksgiving isn't really a big part of Hong Kong festivities, and honestly, many of us don't even know why it's celebrated. But it's worth finding out, because it's one of the warmest family-oriented celebrations of the year.

So what's the scoop? (And I'm not talking ice cream.)

Held on the fourth Thursday of November, Thanksgiving is a family holiday in the United States - think of it as an American Mid-Autumn Festival, with pumpkin pie instead of mooncakes.

The tradition dates back to 1621, when the Pilgrims celebrated the first harvest in their new land. Harvest festivals were common in Europe, but following a difficult first winter in the country, the settlers were especially grateful to have a good harvest. They received a lot of help from the local native American tribe, the Wampanoags, who gave them extra food and showed them how to catch eels and grow corn.

From then on, Americans have gathered once every autumn to give thanks and express their appreciation for life.

It is high time we brought Thanksgiving to Hong Kong, and here's why:


Topping the list, of course, is the Thanksgiving feast. Hongkongers love to eat, so the food would be one of the things we'd enjoy most about this holiday. The most important item is a roast turkey. If you want to celebrate at home but are not kitchen-savvy, shops like City'super and Olivers offer a selection of turkeys available for delivery. Don't forget to pick up a juicy slab of ham and a selection of gravy while you're at it!

Pies, pies and more pies

What's that? An excuse to own up to the cry 'Who ate all the pies?' Now that is a reason to celebrate! From juicy apple and sugary pecan to creamy pumpkin, the mouthwatering list of popular holiday pies is endless. Add a creamy scoop of vanilla ice cream and you're good to go.

Leftovers for a week

Thanksgiving is a great way to stock up the fridge for at least a week. At this special time of year, you won't have to search far for nibbles during a hard-core study session. Be it a smoky chunk of ham or a sweet slice of pie, Thanksgiving leftovers are the perfect after-school pick-me-up. Oh, and another plus? Turkey is a low-fat, high-protein, nutrient-packed food, so enjoy that turkey sandwich.

Celebrate and appreciate life

This is a celebration to remind us of the amazing things in our lives. You'd be amazed at the wonders of taking a step back to appreciate all that we have been blessed with. Not only does it give you that warm, fuzzy feeling inside, it even has the knack of warding off depression and despair in our everyday lives. So take this moment to really think about how fortunate we all are - and prepare yourself for a night purely dedicated to optimism, appreciation ... and overeating.

Family and friends together

If you find it hard to get everyone to take time out of their busy schedules for a long, undisturbed meal, look no further: Thanksgiving is the perfect excuse. Start your own tradition of sitting down with a large group of family or friends, catch up with each others' lives, and be grateful that you have each other.