Subscribe to RSS feed subscribe by email twitter stumble this page  
Food For Thought Green Things
(Entered Dec. 10, 2006)
  Recent Food For Thought:

Christmas is around the corner so it's time for a certain baking tradition to be carried out. When I was young, I had a subscription to a magazine called 'World' which is kind of a National Geographic for kids. Anyway, they had a little christmas recipe section in one issue and my mom asked me to contribute to the holidays by baking something. When you're a pre-teenage boy, baking isn't really the coolest thing to be doing, but my mom wasn't to be denied. So after rebelling a bit, I ended up making a batch of what the magazine called 'holly cookies'. Needless to say, they turned out to be an amazing success with everybody who came to our yearly Christmas party, and from then on it became my responsibility to make them every year. Just goes to show you that if you do something right, you'll have to keep doing it, while if you do something wrong, you'll probably only have to do it once. Unfortunately I never really learned this lesson well....
I've never made them here in Japan, but because I'm not going home for Christmas this year, plus the fond memories they bring, I decided to give it a shot. First of all, we need to go shopping for the ingredients. These are probably the simplest cookies to make in the history of cookies. All you need is: Cornflakes, marshmallows, butter, green food colouring and some of those little cinnamon candies.

green things

Back home it would be a simple trip to the grocery store, but in Japan you have to search harder. Japan isn't big on breakfast cereal, but luckily Cornflakes is one of the few brands from back home that is readily sold in most supermarkets, although a small box is pretty expensive. Butter is of course easy to get, but marshmallows and food colouring are a bit harder. Getting marshmallows requires a trip to a foreign food store unless you want to get a tiny bag of regular Japanese ones, and I had to go to a few stores before I could find any other food colouring colour other than red. Cinnamon candies though are nowhere to be found, I had to use my imagination a bit as you will see later.
Alright let's get cooking. First step is to gently melt the butter and marshmallows in a pan.

green things

After the marshmallows have dissolved, add the food colouring. Back home food colouring is a liquid, but here in Japan it's a powder. Didn't like that too much but what can you do?

green things

Mmmm, looking good! Kumi commented that she felt like a witch brewing a potion of lizards and frogs and such. People are always turned off by the green at first. Next you add in a the cornflakes and stir them up until they're covered in the green sauce.

green things

So far so good! Grease up a tray or two, plus your hands, stick them in the whole mess and start making cookie sized lumps. Kinda look like lumps of radioactive spinach right? Now you can start to see the reason behind the name 'holly cookies'. The name never caught on though. My friend's dad (Mr. Meyer) called them 'green things' at that fateful Christmas party and their fates were sealed.

green things

'So where are the red holly berries?' you might ask. Having no cinnamon candies, whose purpose is to provide said berries, I had to improvise. Truth be told, people back home (including me) always picked off and threw out the cinnamon candies, preferring to eat the leaves by themselves. Something better was needed. How about strawberry jam? Pretty smart if I do say so myself.

green things

Voila, green things ready to eat. People are always dubious the first time, but if you like rice-krispies, you'll like holly cookies too.

green things

Kumi with her dubious expression doing a taste test. After one bite though she was hooked. People always are. Happy holidays!

green things




Pepsi Strong Shot
Zero Life
Green Cola
Pepsi Baobab
Tomato Cafe
Goya Champuru Candy
Cake Lighter Than Air
Coke Breath
Vinegar and Milk
Coke Plus Fiber
Pepsi Azuki - Red Bean Pepsi
Kit Kat's Flavour Fetish - Part 4
Sports Drink Conspiracy
Snapple Facts
Pepper Flavoured Gum
I Need Western Food, Stat!
Grilled Lamb Caramels
Free Beer
Pepsi Shiso (Beefsteak Plant)
Green Tea Coke
All Entries

Tripbase Blog Awards 2009
Tripbase Blog Awards 2009


Recent Comments...

Recent Artwork:
winter beauty

Blogroll - Friends:
Michael John Grist
Comicrocosmos by SZLIN
Jason Collin Photography
Philbuchan's Weblog
The Itinerant American

Blogroll - Japan:
Alive in Kyoto
An Englishman in Osaka
As I See Japan... From L.A.
Gaijin Tonic
i, cjw
Japan Probe
Japan Sugoi
Tokyo Times

Blogroll - Elsewhere:
Buy Absinthe
The Daily Kimchi
Travel Photo Blogging

Great Art Sites:
Red Bubble
Deviant Art



Blender Poll  
  Mike's Facts
sheep on the hunt