Happy New Year at JustJenn's House o' Tradition

Friday, January 1, 2010

JustJenn's New Years
JustJenn's New Year's feast!

Happy New Year! Can you believe it is 2010 already? I'm excited that 2010 will include the Winter Olympics (with commercials featuring Morgan Freeman), World Cup, and another season of Glee. Yeah, I'm easy.

My family made a zillion pounds of mochi again last weekend. And by zillion, I mean 250 pounds of mochi. This year, JustJenn and her family came along to visit. And by visit, I mean place themselves in the factory line that is the Food Librarian's family mochi day. Read about it here or here on JustJenn's blogs.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Ozoni
Ozoni - New Years Soup with toasted mochi

So, what do the Japanese do with all that fresh mochi? We make a special soup (ozoni) and pop a toasted mochi in it. It brings you good luck all year. Or at least til tax season. Or until something not so lucky happens. Then you blame the soup.

Jenn goes all out and makes a huge feast. Tradition says that you cook enough for three days...because back in the day the stores in Japan would close so everyone can be with their families. Luckily, we have Trader Joe's, but Jenn did cook enough food for days! It was all so delicious!!

Mochi Sticker
JustJenn's son, The Kid made this sticker for me! I think I'm known as "the lady who has mochi making at her house...along with a bouncy house."

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - JustJenn's homemade pink mochi
Jenn made her own pink mochi with an (sweetened red beans inside). Recipe here.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Spam Musubi JustJenn's New Year Lunch - He who protects the Spam musubi
Spam musubi. Sure, probably not a traditional dish served in Japan, but our people made it to Los Angeles a long time ago so we have Spam musubi. And who's keeping an eye on the musubi? None other than Johnny Depp Pez. Awesome.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Kamaboko
Kamaboko - Fish cake. During New Years, you can get it with all sorts of purdy shapes inside. I'm looking for the George Clooney Kamaboko.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch JustJenn's New Year Lunch
Kinpira Gobo (Burdock Root and Carrots) - Like hella good for you (lots and lots of fiber).
Kurikinton (Sweet Potatoes and Chestnuts) - Giving you good wealth and fortune.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch JustJenn's New Year Lunch
Kuromame (Black Beans) for health and success and Tazukuri (whole little fish) for good harvest and wealth. These are way traditional...and I skip them every. single. year. Looks like I'm outta luck in 2010.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch
Ise-ebi - Shrimp salad

JustJenn's New Year Lunch JustJenn's New Year Lunch
Jenn makes cute signs with explanations. Yes, she IS the hostess with the mostess.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Edamame
Edamame in a cute holder.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Lumpia
Lumpia (egg rolls). Yeah, not traditional but who wouldn't want fried rolls of goodness for lunch?!??!

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Potato Salad. Very traditional JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Chicken
Potato salad. This is the point where I start making up the cultural significance of potato salad... :) Delicious Honey Shoyu Chicken Wings. Recipe here.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - O.G.'s Flank Steak JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Pork
Jenn's grandmother (O.G.) made this delicious flank steak before watching the Rose Parade this morning. We had a discussion about watching the Rose Parade every. single. year. without. fail.

Jenn made yummy Root Beer Pulled Pork.

Satsuma Tangerines - New Years
I heart the Satsuma Tangerine. They are my favorite winter citrus. And if the "long life" you get is based on how many you eat, I'm going to live forever.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch
Of course, JustJenn made a bunch of yummy desserts. Here are the Green Tea Cupcakes with Strawberry Mascarpone Frosting.

JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Red Velvet Cupcakes JustJenn's New Year Lunch - Broken Glass Jello
Jenn's secret recipe Red Velvet Cupcakes and Broken Glass Jello (here is my post about the Broken Glass Jello)

Whew! It was a delicious feast! THANK YOU so much JustJenn!

Of course, I'm starting my long list of resolutions tomorrow...

Happy New Year to you! Wishing you a great 2010!!! - mary the food librarian

(edited to add JustJenn's top photo! Check out her blog post here)
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26 comments:

Girl Japan: April Marie said... [Reply to comment]

Happy New Year.. what a fabulous spread you have there!

Blue Is Bleu said... [Reply to comment]

Such amazing food! 250 lbs of mochi?! lol Yikes!

kirbie said... [Reply to comment]

Happy New Year! Your food spread looks amazing. Beautiful Kamaboko! I am always looking for ones with pretty designs inside but haven't had much luck finding it in the US. In Taiwan, I see lots of colors and designs. I love all your explanations about the foods and tradition. Thanks for all the information!

carmencooks said... [Reply to comment]

So much good food! Happy New Year!!

Dorothy said... [Reply to comment]

Happy New Year! It's nice to see your family has kept up such a great tradition. That's one huge pile of mochi ya'll made! :)

Amanda said... [Reply to comment]

Wow - this all looks delicious. How fun! Happy New Year!

Beryl said... [Reply to comment]

Wow everything looks amazing! I love the mochi making stories too.

Damaris said... [Reply to comment]

Happy New years.
i just came back from Hawaii where I ate lots of spam musubi.

do you know how to make ice-cream mochi? if so please share.

The Food Librarian said... [Reply to comment]

Everyone...just want to make this clear... I went to JustJenn's house and SHE made everything. I just brought an empty stomach! :) - mary

The Food Librarian said... [Reply to comment]

Damaris, I don't know how to make mochi ice cream...I just buy it! :) - mary

Tamara Marnell said... [Reply to comment]

This is by far the most interesting New Year's post I've seen. I ate two tangerines yesterday, not knowing their significance--yay prosperity!

Esi said... [Reply to comment]

Happy new year! Looks like you had a wonderful and very delicious celebration.

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

I dare you to eat one of those creepy dried fish, Mary! hee, hee, hee!!!
P.S. Very sad I didn't get to see you while in CA but that just means you'll come out to D.C. sooner than later, right? Oh, and it's 11 degrees with the wind chill factor but that won't keep you away, will it? Happy New Year and lots of love across the miles...xoxoxo Racheal

Dawn said... [Reply to comment]

I love glee too!! I want to make green tea cupcakes so badly.
Where does Justjenn live? LOL

Rosa's Yummy Yums said... [Reply to comment]

What gorgeous food!

Happy New Year!

Cheers,

Rosa

Michael [KyotoFoodie] said... [Reply to comment]

Oh, nice article. Thanks! 250 pounds of mochi is a whole lot of mochi!

I made ozoni this year, Kyoto-style which is white and sweet.

I like the kamoboko. I haven't seen it quite like that in Kyoto.

Have a happy and tasty 2010!

Katrina said... [Reply to comment]

Wow, that IS a feast! So fun!
Happy New Year, Mary!

Maria said... [Reply to comment]

Happy New Year. Love all of that food:)

Susan C said... [Reply to comment]

I learned how to make a lot of these dishes in my Japanese cooking class (at Pasadena Buddhist Church) and could MAYBE pull off making ONE of them at a time, but for Just Jenn to pull off all of these dishes - WOW!

DailyChef said... [Reply to comment]

Wow this all looks so good. I once went to a party where we seemingly reconstructed a mochi-making factory =) And that spam masubi has got me drooling!

KK said... [Reply to comment]

Mary - this all looks amazing! I wish my family had more traditions... Happy New Year!!!

Darlene said... [Reply to comment]

Manigong Bagong Taon!

Nanette said... [Reply to comment]

So nice to see you again, Mary! Loooove your pics, as always!

Caroline said... [Reply to comment]

WOW, what a feast! And you got lumpia in there, nice! Don't be afraid of the little fish, those are pretty tasty :) (Filipinos call them dilis) Happy New Year, Mary!
P.S. Don't get me started with George Clooney ;)

pinkstripes said... [Reply to comment]

Happy New Year! 2010 is going to be awesome!!! It looks like you started the right way. YUM!

Kitchen M said... [Reply to comment]

Oooh! Your mochi looks good! And kuromame and tazukuri and and... LOL Happy New Year!

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