Awkwafina makes her family a priority during her holiday celebrations

Awkwafina cooks during a Chase Sapphire demo for the holidays, photo provided by Chase
Awkwafina cooks during a Chase Sapphire demo for the holidays, photo provided by Chase /

As the holidays approach, Awkwafina puts her family at the center of her holiday celebrations.

From stage to screen, Awkwafina has brought joy to many people. From her witty take on life to her poignant commentary on family connections, the award-winning entertainer never seems to be at a loss for words. As the holiday season approaches, her foray into the kitchen might be a whole new experience.

Recently, Awkwafina joined her friend Brooke Williamson in a cooking demo for Chase Sapphire. During the special event, the two shared many laughs, shook up a great cocktail and enjoyed a different twist on the traditional mashed potato side dish. More importantly, it was a time to enjoy being together, even virtually.

Prior to the Chase Sapphire cooking event, I had the pleasure of chatting with Awkwafina about the upcoming holiday season, some of her favorite comfort foods and even a slight cooking mishap. After watching her on so many programs, the most striking takeaway from the conversation was her deep connection to family.

Although some people might feel that 2020 might need a fast forward to 2021, she mentioned that there is a sense of collective understanding about the struggles of this year. She mentioned that there is a benefit to knowing that “you’re not the only one that feels” this emotion. Still, making certain choices is a priority.

For Awkwafina, seeing her family during the holidays is the biggest priority. She mentioned that she is willing to sacrifice testing and quarantines so that she can spend those moments with her family around the holiday table. To be around the people that she loves, she is willing to do whatever is necessary. For her, keeping those holiday moments alive is the most important thing.

While Awkwafina has the ability to make in person holiday a reality, she realizes that others might not have that opportunity. She believes that the cooking demo that she did with Williamson through Chase Sapphire shows everyone how people can connect while being apart.

As seen in the Chase Sapphire event, the laughs and fun are just as joyous in two different kitchens. Whether you accidentally put cooking spray in your eye or burn your mouth on too hot potatoes, those lighthearted moments will be memories to cherish far longer than the food on the table.

In a way, food is that universal language that connects people. From gathering around the table to sharing stories, food is the catalyst to that conversation.

For Awkwafina, those holiday dinners were times where she spoke to aunts and cousins and found that way to reconnect. Even though she might no longer sit at the kids’ table, those moments that bring people together are often centered around food.

Thinking back to her personal experiences, certain traditional, comfort foods and dishes always bring her back to her family. Whether it is scrambled eggs with scallions that her grandmother would always make her or zucchini fritters with oyster sauce, those foods are a plate full of comfort. Sometimes those simple pleasures are the most wonderful moments.

At the same time, many dishes connect her to her family and her heritage. Awkwafina said that her grandmother would always make a special Chinese sausage with rice. That dish was her grandfather’s favorite and she mentioned that eating it brought her closer to her family and her heritage. Even if she cannot recreate it exactly like her grandmother, it is a dish that is forever close to her heart. Just the aroma of that dish can bring back all those memories.

While her family might have certain food traditions, she tries to keep her friend holiday gatherings a little more approachable. Although she might want to push the envelope a little, those traditional holiday dishes will still have some universal appeal. Even if she knew that her friends would be polite in their commentary, she wants to ensure that everyone has an enjoyable time.

Even though some people might be food adventurous, the holidays might not be the best time to set a bowl of chicken feet in the middle of the table as an appetizer. Even if that chicken heart appeared on a menu, it might be surrounded by other foods and flavors that people know.

Although Awkwafina showed that she can master souffle potatoes on the Chase Sapphire cooking demo, she has had a few cooking mishaps. From soaping a chicken (FYI, Palmolive is not a seasoning) to using the correct bakeware in an oven, she has learned and adapted from those experiences. Now, she makes sure that all ovens are empty before turning them on.

If you want to be inspired for your next holiday gathering, check out the Chase Sapphire cooking demo with Awkwafina and Brooke Williamson on YouTube.

Related Story. Andrew Zimmern shares why the holidays focus on gratitude. light

What is your favorite cooking memory? How are you making the holidays special this year?