Squid Guts & Pinkberry

What a wonderful week in Los Angeles I had!

The highlights:

1. Lunch with Rasa Malaysia

We met at Zen Grill restaurant in Beverly Hills. When I first saw her behind the wheel of her HUGE BLACK SUV, I thought, “who in the world would let their 18 year old drive such a beautiful, big car?!” I swear, if there ever was a eternal youth pill, RM should be the national spokesperson. In 40 years, when I’m smackin’ my gums and sneaking viagra in husband’s daily Metamucil, Rasa Malaysia will be prancing around in her mini-skirt and high heels seducing all the rich old men!

While lunch was so-so (how dare they serve us day-old rice and soggy fried tofu!), we did manage to go to Kiwiberry (a Pinkberry knock-off) and have this:

A few days later, I did try Pinkberry. Both tasted good….but my Co-Co Fro-Yo by a Fo-Blo

was SO MUCH BETTER! And I’m not just tootin’ my own horn – my version (well, David Lebovitz’ version) was creamier, richer and cleaner. Pink/Kiwi-Berry version was chemically-tasting. Must be that secret ingredient that they are hiding.

2. Dinner with Wandering Chopsticks and Melting Wok

We met at a Japanese izakaya restaurant called Haru Ulala (bless you!) and ordered a dish called “Squid with Guts.” The name alone should have warned us of what was to come. Raw squid bits swimming in pureed fish guts. I ate it. It was nasty. Tasted like the bottom of the bait bucket.� You’d think that they would come up with a more elegant name than “Squid with Guts.”� After that meal, Wandering Chopsticks urged us to walk around the corner and have a second dinner at a ramen noodle place, which was so totally worth the 40 minute wait! I am still dreaming about the rich, all-day-simmered ramen broth.

>>>>Edit: mmm-yoso just informed me that the squid bits with guts is called Shiokara. According to wikipedia, it is raw squid + salted and month long fermented raw fish intestine pulp that even the Japanese are even squeamish about. Great. Who the hell ordered that dish? I think it was Wandering Chopsticks. I tasted it, it was gross. So I thought, “hmmm…maybe its a dish that you drink with sake.” After 2 large bottles of sake, it still tasted like shit.

If you are REALLY interested in what we had for dinner, Wandering Chopsticks took photos of every single dish – including the famous Squid + Guts.

3. Hanging out with my brother

He took us to an Argentenian restaurant called LaLa on Melrose St., whose waiter was so freakin’ HOT that he could have served us Squid with Guts in Chimichurri Sauce and I would have gleefully eaten it. Brother also took me to Hollywood’s Farmers Market where I bought $5 worth of nectarines so that I could get close enough to this guy in the pic so I could smell his sweaty armpits.

What’s-his-name was on the The Next Food Network Super-Stud last year, and he is now selling at the farmer’s market. I don’t know about you, but I become very suspicious of anyone hawking nectarines with THOSE BEDROOM EYES. Kinda gives me heebie-jeebies!

>>>>Edit: Eliza tells me his name is Nathan Lyon. Despite the bedroom eyes, I totally respect anyone selling such awesome fruit at the farmer’s market.

4. Vote for my friends!

While I am so flattered to have been nominated in Culinate’s Grill Me contest (and I’d LOVE to go back to California), my itty bitty blog is a long shot to win, so instead please vote for some of my favorite blogs in the contest, like: Smitten Kitchen, Homesick Texan, Kalyn’s Kitchen, Oishii Eats, Tastespotting, Rice and Noodles. Maybe I can bribe the winner to CHOOSE ME as their companion to go! You can vote for as many bloggers as you like, you’re not just limited to one.

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Comments 27

  1. Kalyn

    It sounds like you had so much fun! I would love to meet any of those bloggers. I’m really looking forward to meeting a few blog friends this weekend in San Francisco. The friends I’m going on the trip with are not bloggers (not even foodies) but they’re going to allow me to lapse into my blog identity for an afternoon! After that, no endlessly talking about food all the time. BTW, my brother lives in LA too (actually in Venice Beach.) I don’t get to go there nearly often enough.

    I’m definitely a long shot to win the Grill Me contest too! But thanks for mentioning me! I would love to go to that class even if I had to pay for it, but I have a family reunion that very day!

  2. LunaPierCook

    You give your hubby daily doses of Metamucil??? Funny, I’ve not seen it listed in any of your recipes …

    I do remember the dude you’re wrapped around in that picture, but had problems with some of his stuff during the competition. Bedroom eyes don’t make the cook … my wife will tell you that! 😉

  3. Kirk

    Hi Jaden – Sounds like you’ve been introduced to Shiokara – when it’s good, it is so good, but when it’s bad you want to brillo pad your tongue.

    Also sounds like you had ramen at Daikokuya….really good stuff!

  4. tigerfish

    Maybe lotsa seafood is the secret of staying 18-year-young 🙂
    Too late for me to start now 🙁

    Haha….din you notice “What’s-his-name”‘s tee? From Farm to FAMILY….:O ….wonder if it’s the person or fruit ?

  5. Lynn

    Squid and guts? You are much bolder than I. And look how it pays off – you get the hunky waiter and the bedroom-eyes fruit vendor. C’est la vie. 😉

  6. The Cooking Ninja

    I couldn’t help but keep laughing about your adventure with the squid and gut dish. Boy, it must be really bad that even sake doesn’t make it better. Glad that you had a great time still. That guy is sure gorgeous.

  7. Rasa Malaysia

    LOL. Anyone there who wants me to be a spoke person now for forever-young-pill? Call me anytime at 1-800-ever-bee, or you can also leave me a message at http://www.rasamalaysia. Jaden, maybe I should toss the idea of having a cookbook and do one that teaches people how to stay young….wahahahah, like start popping Vit A, C, E the minute you are born. 😛

  8. Carol

    Hi Jaden, I’m so jealous! I wish I had a couple of food blogger girlfriends in Perth I could hang out with. Ever thought of moving Down Under??

  9. SteamyKitchen

    Kayln- I’m sure you can sneak in a few posts on your trip!

    LPC- But…bedroom eyes do make everything taste yummier.

    Melinda- lol!

    Kirk- yes, that was the restaurant! I want a bowl now…

    Karrine- Those mashed potatoes ROCKED

    Amy- You’ll have to join us next time!

    Tiger – you’ll have to ask Rasa Malaysia for her secret!

    Lynn- Squid and Guts…the new aphrodesiac

    Ninja- Oh it was BAAAD.

    RM- I LOVE YOU!! next time we’ll eat at your house!

    V- Yes, quite “gutsy” indeed!

  10. Wandering Chopsticks

    Except for the saltiness, I liked the raw squid and guts. Really. 🙂

    It was fun! And we’re totally on again next time you’re in town. Been so busy, I gotta get around to writing up our outing.

  11. Rose

    Your trip sounds like a lot of fun and full of adventures. You are so funny Jaden, I am sure having lunch with you must have been great for those lucky bloggers.

  12. eatdrinknbmerry

    hi SteamyK, how was the food at Haru Ulala? I always drive by and see it semi-full. Let me and O.Eats know again when you’ll be down again and we’ll try to meet up. how’d you like lala’s grill?

    where are my maggi sauce apron photos??? haha

  13. SteamyKitchen

    Oishii-anytime girlfriend!

    Wok&Spoon- it was non stop eating week. i need to diet now…

    WC- It was way salty! Can’t wait to see the pic and relive that first moment of squid and guts!

    Rose- We had such a blast. I love hanging out with foodie friends and just eating and eating and eating…

    EatDrinkNBMerry- I just sent you an email..

    PE- Yes of course! I’ll be up in bay area later this year. Need to get my Brother Number II fix!

  14. MeltingWok

    Lucky you had pomegranate wine to wash it down with:P I had to hold on to my stinky breath until we reached the ramen place hahaha 🙂 Thanks again for having me over that evening, it was really fun, and we should definitely do this again. How about takoyaki squid balls next time ? *grin* 🙂

  15. Steen

    Yay! I”m so glad I could help and that Haru Ulala worked out for you. I know Kappo Honda is quite a trek!

    Glad you had a fun trip!

  16. eliza

    Hi Jade…I was in California 3 weeks ago & tried Pinkberry too…another new addiction? 😀
    that guy’s name is Nathan Lyon, he has a show in Discovery Health now…

  17. SteamyKitchen

    Melting Wok- oh yeah i totally forgot about the forgettable pomegranate wine!

    Steen- thx again for the recommendation!

    SGC- awww….next time i’ll call you too!

    Eliza- oh I didn’t know he had his own show. despite the heebie jeebie bedroom eyes I respect anyone that sells amazing produce at the markets.

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