Saturday, February 11, 2006

A Girlie Valentine's Feast

Yuko and her daughter, Kimiko (I think that’s her name)* flew from Tokyo to LA for one short week to visit Yuko’s good friend Barbie. I’m not allowed to tell the story of how Yuko and Barbie met or anything about their friendship (they’re sure there’s a book in it...I think maybe a movie!) except to say they met in a department store in Tokyo and they’re not gay. Their short week has been filled with many shopping trips (everything so cheap here!), an overnight in Vegas (Mama Mia! and big roulette wheel…I lost shirt off my stomach), the L.A. Flower Mart (we go and it stir dark) and then, as though that wasn’t enough, Barbie organized a Valentine’s Day dinner for women only! Barbie sets a mighty fine table.

She said it would be simple and none of us believed that for minute. As a matter of fact, we were all banking on the fact that it would be suitably complicated and fabulous! Here’s how simple it was…and I KNOW I’m forgetting something.

A fabulous salad to start

Lamb cutlets with a herbed crust**

Asparagus (I swear I think she peeled them)


Mashed potatoes with goat cheese

The dessert was chocolate mousse gently folded into a chocolate crepe! With a dark chocolate heart and a white chocolate arrow and, in case that wasn’t enough, strawberries and whipped cream! YEA!

And then Yuko brought out these beautifully wrapped little things. Yuko said they were sweet and passed them out. All were made from weird stuff like soy paste and soy gum (which closely resembles the end stage of a cold) and um, not really sweet, but my god, the way they were wrapped. I choose the prettiest wrapped one which most resembled snot or that clear, see-through glue we used to use in school surrounded by yellowy brown powder. Don’t blow on it, Yuko warned. She smiled and encouraged me to eat more. You like? Who wants to be rude? How can you say"Yuko, very pretty, love the packaging, but what's with the flavor???"

* Barbie set me straight...her name is Akiko

** We had racks of lamb, not cutlets...sheesh


Blogger junebee said...

You always attend the most fantastic functions!

Asian sweets are really far from the American/European ideal of sweets. Sweet bean curd just CAN'T compare to chocolate! When we went to the Korean market, Nanny G. was surprised to see candy. I said sure, Asian kids like candy too!

6:54 AM  
Blogger JB said...

"The dessert was chocolate mousse gently folded into a chocolate crepe! With a dark chocolate heart and a white chocolate arrow and, in case that wasn’t enough, strawberries and whipped cream! YEA!"

Lin, I thought I was the only one who could get this excited about food, so excited that you have to describe every single detail. But, clearly I'm not alone in my love of describing fabulous meals.

What fun! I love the pictures and the fact that it was a Vlaentine's soiree fro women only.

11:38 AM  
Blogger Lin said...

Junebee, and have you noticed a pattern...all the fantastic functions are through Barbie! I am beyond casual and couldn't set a table or cook a meal like Barbie if my life depended on it. I don't think I'll ever be able to toss these Japanese sweets because they are just too beautiful.

jb. I think (wait, I know) I love food way too much. For me, the most beautifully written stories about food were written by MFK Fischer. Have you read any of her books? Beyond fantastic.

5:49 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

MFK Fischer--haven't read the books yet or ever heard of her, but now I am REALLY curious! Great feast, and I am always amazed at how wonderful the Japanese are with presentation.

6:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I tried to post a comment before and it didn't post. Apparently if you can cook and do parties, you are probably computer-challenged! Hope this one "takes". Thank you, Linda, for your wonderful recap of the party. You may have noticed that I sat you smack dab in the center of the table (well, not literally) because I didn't want anyone to miss one word that came out of your extremely funny and witty mouth. Let me just say this: a party ain't a party without Lin! I wish the rest of you could meet her in person instead of just "reading" her. And to those of you who commented on my menu, etc.---thank you for the lovely compliments!


3:16 PM  

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