Monday, January 21, 2008

Sweet treats and monsters

My friend Julie came over yesterday, to make manju - little Japanese cakes that have anko, or red bean paste on the inside, and dough on the outside. We made two kinds - mochi manju which is made with rice flour dough and yaki manju which has a sort of biscuit/pancake-y outer dough (our faves!). The mochi manju turned out a little wonky, but the yaki manju turned out just fine. Here they are cooking on the grill:

The little black bits on top are kurogoma, or black sesame seeds. Mmmmm...

Not so hard to make, but just time-consuming, since each one is hand-formed - a bit of a pain, but fun when you have good company ☺ Oddly enough, the recipe we used is Julie's grandmother's recipe, which ended up in MY mom's recipe book, via my mom's sister who knew Julie's grandmother (did ya get all that?). Julie didn't know of this recipe, so it's kind of neat in a good karma kind of way...

And Julie came bearing gifts. Look at this amazing tote bag! The pocket on the front is quilted layers of Japanese material in this lovely pattern - I'm not a sewer so I have no clue of technical terms - all I know is it's wonderfully made, I can put a lot in it, and I looove it!

Here's a close-up of the pocket:

Also included in my gift were these Godzilla (aka Gojira) stickers which made me growl - with glee. I'm not joking. I'm a fan of the old Godzilla movies, their cheesiness, and the fact that you can pretty much see the zipper on the costumes. And besides, the original movie's "no nukes" message just makes sense to me. Raaaaaaawrrrrrrr.

1 comment:

High Desert Diva said...

sounds like a fun evening