1 lb. bean curd

1/2 lb. Chinese cabbage

1/2 cup lard

1 tbsp. shredded onion

2 cups broth

Salt to taste

1 tbsp. sesame oil

To Prepare:

1. Cut bean curd into small squares, cut cabbage into pieces about 4 cm. square, and parboil bean curd and cabbage separately in hot water.

2. Heat oil over a high flame, stir-fry onion, then add the cabbage, bean curd, broth and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until bean curd begins to swell. Pour into a large bowl, sprinkle with sesame oil and serve.


Check for Value Sometimes, the alien nature of beauty spa services can throw the newcomer for a loop. With an array of services that involve the use of foods, oils, creams, herbs, aromas, teas, and a dizzying assortment of substances animal, vegetable, and mineral, the beauty spa visitor can easily be in uncharted territory. Sometimes it seems as though the more obscure the treatment, the higher the price. Are you better off just putting yourself in the therapist’s hands and hoping for the best? How can you judge value for your dollars spent at a beauty spa, when you barely understand what’s being used, let alone why? It’s wise to remember that a beauty spa is a business, and, like any business, is interested in continuing to boost its revenues. This may involve a strategy as simple as repackaging their product to make it look new and different, in hopes of attracting enough customer interest to collect a higher price. Does that mean you need to thoroughly understand the entire science, philosophy, and art of massage, facials, body wraps, and each of the substances a therapist is likely to use in the process, in order to be sure you’re getting your money’s worth at a beauty spa? It’s hard to say, and probably varies from one individual to the next. It depends on how much you can relax, enjoy, and benefit from the treatment, if you suspect the value of what’s happening the whole time. Some beauty spas have now left the treatment vocabulary behind, calling the delivery of services rituals, thereby enhancing the atmosphere, the combination of services you get, the products they use and the price! You may be the type of guest who is willing to wade through all the unheard-of vocabulary, by poring over glossaries in order to determine what it is you’re really getting, beneath the packaging. On the other hand, you may simply decide going into the experience that you’re paying for the opportunity to simply lie back and let the experts treat you to a new set of sensations, and not be overly worried about whether they are really new and effective treatments. Nonetheless, if you find yourself wondering, for instance, why a treatment feels exactly like the one you had yesterday, but in a differently staged environment, using chocolate instead of tea, or oils instead of clay, and with a name that sounds vaguely Eastern instead of vaguely organic, you may be tuning in on the fact that beauty spas, like any other business, are constantly reinventing themselves to compete in a fiercely competitive business.

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