Thaisgiving: The Outcome

Wan being force-fed the pumpkin-soy sauce fusion.

Yesterday I booked it home from work to start cooking. Since we didn’t have any evaporated milk for the pumpkin pie, Ngo made some fresh coconut milk. With one stove (2 working burners) and an oven (with no temperature regulation – at all) we managed to crank out all of our planned dishes. They were even ready by our normal dinner time!

Everyone (Goi (host “mom”), Wan (host “dad”), Mae Yai (grandma) and Ngo (maid – but she’s basically a member of the family) LOVED the food. Ngo helped us cook even though she doesn’t speak much English, and they were all really impressed with what we could make out of limited ingredients in a Thai kitchen.

I was super pleased with how everything turned out…except the pumpkin pie. Since the oven didn’t have a thermometer or a way to change the heat level at all, the crust on the pumpkin pie got pretty scorched. The actual filling was cooked perfectly, so the family still eagerly tasted the pie. Mae Yai LOVED the pie – including the scorched crust. She ate two slices plain, then started putting soy sauce on the third one (I don’t pretend to understand these things). I tasted the soy sauce concoction. It didn’t taste bad – it just tasted like soy sauce.

They were confused why gravy wasn’t soup, and Goi ended up putting some on the sweet potato casserole. They kept trying to understand which ingredients we used and if these dishes were at all comparable to Thai foods. I believe there was a Indian (cumin)-rice comparison with our stuffing at one point, God bless ’em.

Goi instructed Ngo to “spy” a.k.a. “remember” all our recipes so she could reproduce them in the future. We also discovered other dishes she hasn’t heard of – or tasted – before, and put them on our “to-do” list (for example, veggie burgers and s’mores).