Monday, January 03, 2005


Having posted on 'supersizing' a while ago, I noticed all the more the apple pie Etsuko bought via the local co-op as dessert for our New Year’s dinner. This is a photo of the pie.

You can see by its size relative to the cigarette pack (so those of you don’t have to ask, it’s a 1916 Luckies replica from my modest expat collection) that the pie is only slightly larger than the little mass-produced “Hostess” pies sold in NY mom & pop grocery stores back in the now-museum 1950s (the 50s were so real at the time!). About a large handful in size, those pies were dessert for a workman’s (or schoolboy’s) lunch.

The apple pie shown here is meant to serve 4 people. This portional smallness is ingrained in Japan where, traditionally, food portion size is diminished and the aesthetic expanded. Also, this pie is much less sweet than the pies of old that live on in the dessert pantheon of my memory.

Though desserts of this type are not traditional in Japan, they are making inroads, but generally still in traditionally sized portions. Folks don’t groan with satiation after Japanese meals. I’d still be willing to groan after a traditional US holiday dinner, but only once (maybe twice, or more) a year.

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