Lee Anne Wong

Lee Anne Wong on Anthony Bourdain, going behind-the-scenes, and Thanksgiving dinner.

on Nov 22, 2006

I am looking forward to Thanksgiving this year. My boyfriend refuses to let me near the turkey (it's "his" thing). Two years ago a friend of mine bought an outdoor deep fryer (he lived in a basement apartment in Astoria with a backyard). We deep-fried a bird for a party we threw the day before Thanksgiving at his place. Delicious. Then we actually had another party at my place and he was supposed to deep-fry another turkey and bring it over. It was sort of raining out that night so he moved the deep fryer into his hallway that cut through the basement and connected the front of the building with the backyard. Lesson #1: do not deep-fry a 15-pound turkey indoors. There is a very good chance you will come close to burning your building down.

Last year, I didn't get the chance to go home and see my family, but had dinner with Chef Zarela Martinez and her family, which includes Chef Aaron Sanchez of Paladar and Centrico. Aaron's brother, Rodrigo, had bought a caja china, or Cuban roasting box, for a pig roast we had had earlier that summer in Brooklyn. They trucked the caja china up to Zarela's apartment in Manhattan and made maybe the best turkey I have ever had, Mexican style, by brining it in tequila and lime juice and then cooking it in the caja china.