Celebrating Thanksgiving, Owamni-style
Happy Thanksgiving! As you gather to celebrate with friends and family, it’s a good time to reflect on the history of the holiday and how you like to celebrate it. (We're giving thanks with a Lumi Trip Giveaway. Remember to sign up if you haven't already!).
This year, Thanksgiving has me looking forward to dining with Lumi guests at Chef Sean Sherman’s popular Minneapolis restaurant, Owamni on our Minneapolis World Cup trip this February.
After growing up on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in the southwest corner of South Dakota, Sherman was inspired by a trip he took to Mexico to start The Sioux Chef and Owamni in 2014. During his travels in Mexico, he learned about the Indigenous people’s connection to their culinary traditions and left wanting to share and educate people about the foodways of Indigenous communities across North America.
Part of Sherman’s work is illuminating the true histories of colonist-Native American interactions connected to Thanksgiving. Beyond this, he likes to focus Thanksgiving celebrations on “values that apply to everybody: togetherness, generosity and gratitude” and also encourages making “the day about what everybody wants to talk and think about anyway: the food.”
You probably know that traditional Thanksgiving staples like turkey and pumpkin pie are made with ingredients indigenous to North America. These and less traditional Thanksgiving dishes made with corn, beans, or wild rice are all non-colonial foods that Sherman likes to embrace both for the holiday and at his restaurant Owamni, which is the Dakota name for the St Anthony Falls on the Mississippi River, is also the site of the restaurant.
If you’re looking for menu inspiration, Sherman’s cookbook The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen highlights recipes featuring these ingredients and more. For those Midwesterners reading this, the cookbook and restaurant also celebrate dishes special to Indigenous communities in North Dakota and Minnesota.
Similar to tickets at the Minneapolis World Cup, reservations at Owamni typically fill several months in advance. If you want to join us at the Owamni table and on the World Cup race course in Minneapolis this February, we have a few spaces left. Reach out to see the itinerary or to sign up: email@example.com
For now, I hope your table is full of friends, family and good food for the holiday! Perhaps you can even sneak outside for a little ski. Enjoy!