“Come to our Thanksgiving dinner tonight! All of the friends will be there!” Sam Ding suggested enthusiastically.
“Umm… of course…” I replied with hesitation because I did not have any Thanksgiving gifts for Sam, which would be considered impolite if I were to go to this dinner. Suddenly, I remembered that I know how to cook.
“I will help your mom with dinner!” I added. Sam seemed to be very pleased.
Our dinner consisted of no turkeys. It was obvious that eating turkey, a ritual that only exists in the western tradition, would not be able to alleviate the nostalgia of a group of students who had been away from home for four months. Sam’s mom decided that we were going to make dumplings. She was not familiar with the tricks of making dumplings at that time. Consequently, I took over all the responsibilities.
She was not the only one who wanted to know more about cooking. All my peers were engrossed with learning how to make the stuffing, how to roll out the dough, and how to wrap the dumplings up. I shared my experiences with them. For example, when kneading the dough, there are three principles: flour should not be left on the hands, on the utensil, or on the dough. I also taught my friends the hardest part of making dumplings, which is rolling out the dough to make dumpling skins. One must rotate the dough when rolling the dough with a rolling pin because the skin should be the thickest in the center in order to keep the stuffing together.
All of my friends participated in the cooking. Some fried eggs, some cut chives into pieces, some cleaned the shrimp, and some tried to wrap the dumplings. On the day of family reunions, I had a wonderful time with these Abbey friends. I am glad that not only did they like the dumplings, but they also got to know more about how to make them.