Anyone who's ever looked in my pantry or refrigerator can attest to the fact that I have a love for Asian (specifically Japanese) food and ingredients. And I tend to do a deep dive when I cook any cuisine and seek out the most authentic ingredients available.

So I find myself at the Asian grocery quite a bit. Which is quite fun because a trip there is not merely to stock up on specific vinegars, fermented pastes, soy sauces, vegetables, or even dinner (see: ducks, roasted).

But I also tend to walk out with a bonus item--especially if my daughter is with me.

Recent hauls have included molds to make animal shaped hard-boiled eggs (also available in quail egg size), training chopsticks, dragon dishes, and all sorts of things that get her excited about food and the whole shopping experience. In fact, she's convinced that she's getting a sword this year for Christmas (she might).

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