Before last November I had never celebrated Thanksgiving, but when a couple of American students on our campus started organizing a dinner, I knew I wanted to join. Since we’re in China and Chinese people also don’t do traditional Thanksgiving dinners, the guys thought of something to replace the turkey with; so instead of turkey we had a whole roasted goat, hence Thanksgoating.
The dinner took place at a restaurant that is specialized in Xinjiang (province in the northwest of China) cuisine. First we had some normal Xinjiang dishes – one of my favorite Chinese cuisines by the way – and after that one of the men working at the restaurant got all our attention when he walked in with the goat, roasted in one piece. The goat was first placed at the table, so everyone could gaze at it and take pictures, then it got placed on a different table and was cut it into pieces.
Some people might find it disturbing to roast an animal in one piece and eat it like this, but I actually think it is one of the best ways to do it. So often we get disconnected from our meat, by buying it in pre-cut pieces in the supermarket, that we forget that there has been an animal slaughtered for us to eat it. I would say that it is more respectful towards the animal to eat it like this and seeing where the meat is coming from, than buying it in the supermarket and avoiding to think about its origins.
Anyway, my first Thanksgiving dinner was quite spectacular and a lot of fun (maybe the beer helped a little bit). And even though goat meat turned out not to be my favorite, the flavor is a bit too strong for my taste, it was such an incredibly cool experience.
Note: pictures are not taken by me.