Leyandra's Thanksgiving Meal Tradition

I come from a very big family on both sides that is very spread out. Thanksgiving has always been a way for everyone to get together to catch up and of course eat! t for the past couple of years my dad's side of the family has made a point to get together in NY to honor my late Grandmother's tireless efforts to always keep us together.  It is something I truly look forward to every year. Our Thanksgiving tradition is to split up the dishes in a potluck format. Everyone is known for his or her famous dish and I come from a mixed family that highlights Puerto Rican and African American traditions so the blend of dishes is always so amazing. Being a Puerto Rican vegetarian is a little rough at Thanksgiving and since I'm also known as the salad queen in the family,  I always bring a salad to our dinner.  I try to switch it up each year with different ingredients, but this salad is one my favorites and one that my family really loves. It is also super easy to make! 

I love that my family is so blended and brings different foods and cultures to celebrate. Ji and I are sharing our traditions this year to highlight just how unique traditions can be and how you can totally makeup your own. We'd love to hear some of your favorite Thanksgiving traditions! You can check out the recipe to this Apple Spinach Salad below!

Serves 20

Apple Spinach Salad


1 pack of Baby Spinach

1 Cucumber chopped into slivers

1 pack Feta Cheese crumbled

3-4 HoneyCrisp Apples cut into cubes

3-5 tablespoons Olive Oil 

Salt to taste

Lemon Juice from half of a lemon


1. Chop all ingredients and mix together in a bowl

2. Add olive oil, lemon juice and salt to taste

3. Toss and enjoy!

*Random tips- Adding cooked brown makes this light, refreshing salad a bit more hearty. A chopped red onion also adds some spice and kick. Bosc Pears also make a great substitute for apples in this salad.  

Ji's Thanksgiving Meal Tradition

My family never had or did anything on Thanksgiving that lasted more than a year or two and so nothing made it to the "tradition" list. We typically had turkey at church on Sunday the week of Thanksgiving, so we always got our turkey fix out of way before Thanksgiving. We did get together and spend time together eating and eating and eating. It's just that nothing repeated year after year. Very little changed even after I got married and started a family of my own.

My husband and I still don't cook a traditional turkey feast or any sort of feast, but we do have something we can humbly and shyly call a tradition. Every Thanksgiving, we wake up pretty early, put on a sweater and Uggs. Then we head over to the Starbuck across the street, grab coffee, walk couple steps across the parking lot, stand in a line mostly of men and wait paitently for our Marie Callendar's Pecan Pie(s). Yup, that is our Thanksgiving tradition. We go get coffee and pie together as a family. We have done it every year ever since we got married and so it feels very special that we have our own thing that we do. Depending on the plans and who we'll be getting together with, we make sure we get several to gift and share. I can honestly say that we don't do it because it's just easy (although it is undeniably easier compared to actually baking a pie), but because we really do enjoy doing it every year and find ourselves looking forward to it. To me, that itself is worthy of being called a tradition.