Diaspora

Miami's many Thanksgiving traditions – Axios

Miami
Axios Miami is an Axios company.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios
There's no one right way to celebrate Thanksgiving. And in multicultural Miami, it’s a challenge to find two holiday dinners that look exactly alike.
Some of us cook our turkeys differently or skip the bird altogether. The side dishes go well beyond cranberry sauce.
Why it matters: Miami is a community of immigrants, and the diversity of our traditions highlights how families pay respect to their homelands while taking part in U.S. holidays.
We asked some neighbors how their communities celebrate Thanksgiving:
Carlos Frías, new host of "Sundial" on WLRN and former food editor for the Miami Herald, said growing up in a Cuban-American family meant turkey took a backseat to pork during his Thanksgiving dinners.
What they’re saying: "To me, only in Miami can you find turkeys made in a caja China," Frias said, calling it the "perfect confluence of Latin American and American culture."
Francois Alexandre, Haitian-born co-founder of the community empowerment group Konscious Kontraktors, didn't grow up celebrating Thanksgiving at home because he was raised a Jehovah's Witness — but he'd go over to his friend's house for Turkey Day dinner.
What they're saying: Alexandre, who said he's been on a diet and losing weight, joked that he doesn't know if he is strong enough to resist all the temptations on the Thanksgiving table.
Of note: Through Konscious Kontraktors, Alexandre distributed turkeys and other food staples in Little Haiti last weekend and is planning a Christmas toy and food drive, and a hot meal distribution Dec. 23.
Gabriel Groisman, a former mayor of Bal Harbour and an attorney, tells Axios that his Thanksgiving meals look a lot like his other family meals — and they both revolve around the Argentine asado barbecue.
What they're saying: "We have the turkey. Nobody touches it," Groisman said.
Editor's note: This story has been corrected to reflect that Gabriel Groisman does not celebrate Christmas because he is Jewish. We apologize to Groisman and deeply regret the error.
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