As promised, since we often like to talk about both holidays and history, this week we will tell you about Thanksgiving Day, an anniversary Italians have little information. Often, when you move to a country where different cultures are mixed, you assimilate (and often make your own) the uses and customs of the place, including traditional festivals.
We know that Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November and that the typical dish is the famous stuffed turkey. But what else do we know?
We are in the XVII Century when the Pilgrim Fathers, persecuted because of their Calvinist Christian religion, decide to leave England, set sail aboard the Mayflower and leave for "the new world". They land exhausted on the coasts of North America, hostile territory inhabited by Native Americans, bringing with them some typical seeds of their homeland. Given the conditions of the soil, the harvest at the beginning did not bear fruit. The natives, therefore, began to help them by suggesting the sowing and breeding of plants and animals that were well suited to the territory: corn, pumpkin and turkeys [ed: the advent of the turkey dates back to the Aztecs who, in the newly conquered Americas, they offered them as a gift to the Spaniards who, in turn, imported them into Europe]. The following year, their efforts were rewarded with a good harvest; therefore, the Pilgrims decided to dedicate a day to thank God. We have to wait, however, until 1676 to have the first official declaration in which Thanksgiving is proclaimed.
Since that day, of course, the tradition has evolved and, although it was born as a Christian holiday, today it is considered secular. And the infamous turkey? Doing some research, we discover that the National Thanksgiving Turkey Presentation ceremony takes place annually at the White House, or a ceremony in which two turkeys are pardoned who, subsequently, are transferred to the Frontierland ranch not before having inaugurated the parade on Main Street of Disneyland. But let's get to the culinary tradition. How is turkey cooked? What are the other typical dishes that are prepared for the occasion?
Lunch takes place strictly at home and the turkey is always cooked following the "secret" family recipe and generally accompanied with puree, vegetables, pumpkin pie or corn focaccia (more typical of the Northern states). Traditionally, you should keep the turkey in brine for 24 hours in order to soften the meat. Then we proceed with the filling which usually includes apples, onions, sage and various aromas or the classic chestnut stuffing with boiled chestnuts. In case you want to try it, don't forget to make the famous cranberry sauce!
Many of us, however, do not know that Thanksgiving is closely linked to Black Friday, the day when shops offer exceptional discounts and promotions, effectively kicking off the Christmas shopping season. It's very common to see long queues outside the shops from the early hours of the morning hoping to grab the best promotional products with discounts that can sometimes reach up to 90% of the original price. But how was Black Friday born? Let's see together some curiosities about this day.
According to some, the term refers to the crisis of the New York Stock Exchange in 1860 when the government was forced to correct some market distortions by increasing the supply of raw materials which, following the collapse in prices, caused huge economic losses in many investors. Others, on the other hand, argue that the positive connotation associated with Black Friday refers to the registers returned to profit following the large collections obtained on this day of the year, as opposed to the loss-making accounts (marked "in red").
And in Hong Kong? What is Tablo thinking to offer for Black Friday? We will offer, just for one day, the 30% discount on every purchase on our website. Obviously... we are also preparing for the Christmas season.
What are you waiting for? We are here to help you!